BURLESON, Texas, June 9 (UPI) -- Texas school officials said "content" was not the issue when they cut the microphone on a valedictorian who deviated from a pre-approved speech to praise Jesus.
Joshua High School valedictorian Remington Reimer spoke for about a minute during his graduation speech Thursday before school officials cut the microphone, the Fort Worth Star-Telegram reported Saturday.
Reimer thanked God for "sending his only son to die for me and the rest of the world," and then talked about constitutional guarantees of free speech, the Burleson Star reported.
The newspaper said the mic was cut just after he told his audience "yesterday, I was threatened with having the mic turned off and ... ."
Superintendent Fran Marek said speakers were told "if they deviated from the speech that the mic would be turned off. It had nothing to do with the content."
The district's policy requires valedictorian, salutatorian and historian speeches at graduation to be submitted ahead of the ceremony and approved by school officials, the Star-Telegram said.
Reimer -- who plans to attend the U.S. Naval Academy -- continued his speech without a microphone. When he finished, some students led many in the audience in a standing ovation, said Serena Bair, who was in the crowd to watch her daughter graduate.