Bauchman v. West High School ( 1997 )


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  •                                                                 F I L E D
                                                              United States Court of Appeals
                                                                      Tenth Circuit
                                    PUBLISH
                                                                     DEC 18 1997
                     UNITED STATES COURT OF APPEALS
                                                                PATRICK FISHER
                                                                          Clerk
                                  TENTH CIRCUIT
    
    
    
    CHERYL BAUCHMAN, as parent and guardian for Rachel
    Bauchman,
    
          Plaintiff-Appellant,
                                                              Nos. 95-4084 &
    v.                                                             96-4101
    
    WEST HIGH SCHOOL; SALT LAKE CITY SCHOOL
    DISTRICT; RICHARD TORGERSON; WILLIAM
    BOSTON; GENE BONELLA; TERESA PIELE; DOLORES
    RILEY; DARLINE ROBLES; DALE MANNING; MARY
    JO RASMUSSEN,
    
          Defendants-Appellees,
    
    and
    
    LEILA QUINONES BARELA, by and through her father,
    Luke J. Barela; LUKE J. BARELA, in his own capacity;
    TAMRA M. BADGER, by and through her parent and
    guardian, William A. Badger; WILLIAM A. BADGER, in
    his own capacity; CINDY R. BADGER; ERIC MICHAEL
    NIELSEN, by and through his parent and guardian Greg
    Nielsen; GREG NIELSEN, in his own capacity; JO RITA
    NIELSEN; HEATHER PETTIT, by and through her parent
    and guardian, Ralph Pettit; RALPH PETTIT, in his own
    capacity; ELAINE PETTIT; JOY M. WARTHEN, by and
    through her parent and guardian, Lee Warthen;
    ALEXANDER B. WARTHEN, by and through his parent
    and guardian, Lee Warthen; LEE WARTHEN, in his own
    capacity; BARBARA WARTHEN; STEVEN C. EROR, JR.,
    by and through his parent and guardian, Steven C. Eror;
    STEVEN C. EROR, in his own capacity; JUDY H. ERROR;
     JANE CURTIS, by and through her parent and guardian,
     Marvin R. Curtis, Jr.; MARVIN R. CURTIS, JR., in his own
     capacity; JOAN C. CURTIS,
    
            Defendants-Intervenors.
    
     -----------------------------
    
     PRESBYTERIAN CHURCH (U.S.A.); UNITED CHURCH
     BOARD FOR HOMELAND MINISTRIES OF THE
     UNITED CHURCH OF CHRIST; AMERICAN JEWISH
     COMMITTEE; ANTI-DEFAMATION LEAGUE;
     GENERAL CONFERENCE OF SEVENTH-DAY
     ADVENTISTS; UNION OF AMERICAN HEBREW
     CONGREGATIONS,
    
            Amicus Curiae.
    
    
                        Appeal from the United States District Court
                                  for the District of Utah
                                   (D.C. No. 95-CV-506)
    
    
    Andrew C. Hruska, New York, New York (Edward A. Harris, Georgina E.
    Hayden, Michael W. Martin and Joseph E. Neuhaus, New York, New York; Ross
    C. Anderson and Nathan B. Wilcox of Anderson & Karrenberg, Salt Lake City,
    Utah, with him on the briefs), for Plaintiff-Appellant.
    
    David J. Jordan, of Stoel Rives LLP, Salt Lake City, Utah, and Debra J. Moore,
    Assistant Attorney General, Salt Lake City, Utah (Kenneth R. Black of Stoel
    Rives LLP, Salt Lake City, Utah, with them on the briefs), for Defendants-
    Appellees.
    
    Eric W. Treene (Kevin J. Hasson and Nancy E. Smith of The Becket Fund for
    Religious Liberty, Washington, D.C., with him on the briefs) for Defendants-
    Intervenors.
    
    Marc D. Stern and Lois C. Waldman of The American Jewish Congress, New
    
    
                                            -2-
    York, New York; Colby A. Smith and Alan H. Scheiner of Debevoise & Plimpton,
    New York, New York; Judith E. Schaeffer and Elliot M. Mincberg of People for
    the American Way, Washington, D.C.; Steven K. Green and Julie A. Segal of
    Americans United for Separation of Church and State, Washington, D.C., filed
    amici curiae briefs.
    
    
    Before BRORBY, BARRETT and MURPHY, Circuit Judges.
    
    
    BRORBY, Circuit Judge.
    
    
    
    I.    INTRODUCTION
    
          Rachel Bauchman, by and through her mother and guardian, Cheryl
    
    Bauchman sued her music teacher, Mr. Richard Torgerson, West High School, the
    
    Salt Lake City School District and several West High School and School District
    
    Administrators, claiming that defendants violated the Establishment, Free
    
    Exercise and Free Speech clauses of the United States Constitution and her civil
    
    rights under 42 U.S.C. § 1983 (1994), her rights under the Religious Freedom and
    
    Restoration Act, 42 U.S.C. § 2000bb (1994), and the Religion and Speech clauses
    
    of the Utah Constitution.
    
    
    
          The constitutional issues raised in this appeal are issues of acute public
    
    interest -- issues which evoke diverse opinions and strong emotions. The fact Ms.
    
    Bauchman's claims focus on religious neutrality in public schools only intensifies
    
    
                                            -3-
    that interest and emotion. 1 This is no more true than in Salt Lake City, Utah -- a
    
    community and state whose unique social and political history reveals a
    
    longstanding tension involving the separation of church ("The Church of Jesus
    
    Christ of Latter-day Saints" or "Mormon Church") and state. 2
    
    
    
          Acknowledging this unique history and tension, we have taken particular
    
    care in studying Ms. Bauchman's claims and legal arguments. We take seriously
    
    our obligation to uphold the First Amendment of the Constitution, which
    
    fundamentally operates to protect minority interests. Our study of the relevant
    
    facts and law leads us to affirm the district court's dismissal of Ms. Bauchman's
    
    complaint and denial of her motion to amend the complaint.
    
    II.   BACKGROUND
    
          1
              As the United States Supreme Court has recognized:
    
          The public school is at once the symbol of our democracy and the
          most pervasive means for promoting our common destiny. In no
          activity of the State is it more vital to keep out divisive forces than in
          its schools, to avoid confusing, not to say fusing, what the
          Constitution sought to keep strictly apart.
    
    Illinois ex rel. McCollum v. Board of Education, 
    333 U.S. 203
    , 231 (1948)
    (Frankfurter, J., concurring).
    
          2
            For an excellent discussion of this unique history see Society of
    Separationists, Inc. v. Whitehead, 
    870 P.2d 916
     (Utah 1993) (Utah Supreme Court
    upheld Salt Lake City Council’s practice of permitting prayer during opening
    portion of council meetings).
    
                                             -4-
          A.     SUMMARY OF FACTS AND ALLEGATIONS
    
          Rachel Bauchman was a sophomore at Salt Lake City's West High School
    
    during the 1994-95 school year. During that same year, Ms. Bauchman auditioned
    
    for and was admitted into Mr. Richard Torgerson's a capella choir class (the
    
    "Choir"), an elective course offered for credit.
    
    
    
          By way of her original complaint and proposed amended complaint, Ms.
    
    Bauchman, who is Jewish, generally alleges Mr. Torgerson "engaged for many
    
    years, and continues to engage, in the advocacy, promotion, endorsement and
    
    proselytizing of his [Mormon] religious beliefs and practices" during his public
    
    school classes and Choir performances. More specifically, she claims (1) as a
    
    member of the Choir she was required to perform a preponderance of Christian
    
    devotional music; (2) Mr. Torgerson selected songs for the religious messages
    
    they conveyed; (3) the Choir was required to perform Christian devotional songs
    
    at religious sites dominated by crucifixes and other religious symbols; (4) Mr.
    
    Torgerson selected religious sites for Choir performances with the purpose and
    
    effect of publicly identifying the Choir with religious institutions; (5) Mr.
    
    Torgerson berated and ostracized students, like herself, who dissented against his
    
    religious advocacy; (6) Mr. Torgerson covertly organized a Choir tour for select
    
    Choir members to perform religious songs at religious venues in southern
    
    
                                              -5-
    California; and (7) Mr. Torgerson deliberately scheduled the Choir to sing two
    
    explicitly Christian devotional songs during West High School's 1995 graduation.
    
    Ms. Bauchman also presents a long list of Mr. Torgerson's alleged
    
    unconstitutional practices as a public school teacher beginning some seventeen
    
    years prior to Ms. Bauchman's enrollment in his class. She alleges the remaining
    
    defendants 3 had knowledge of but consistently failed to take any effective
    
    measures to stop Mr. Torgerson from promoting religion in his Choir classes.
    
    
    
          Ms. Bauchman left West High School and enrolled in a private school for
    
    the 1996-97 school year -- her senior year. Although she expressed a desire to
    
    sing in the Choir during her senior year, she declined an invitation to audition for
    
    the 1996-97 Choir. In June 1997, subsequent to oral argument in this appeal, Ms.
    
    Bauchman graduated from high school. Hence, she will no longer have occasion
    
    to enroll in Salt Lake City public schools.
    
    
    
    
          3
             During all relevant time periods, Defendant William Boston was
    Principal of West High School; Defendants Gene Bonella and Teresa Piele were
    assistant principals; Defendant Dolores Riley was the School District’s Minority
    Liaison Coordinator; Defendant Darline Robles was the School District
    Superintendent beginning in January 1995; Defendant Dale Manning was the
    School District Interim Acting Superintendent from August 1994 - January 1995;
    and Defendant Mary Jo Rasmussen was the Salt Lake City School Board
    President.
    
                                             -6-
          B.     PROCEDURAL HISTORY
    
          Ms. Bauchman filed her complaint requesting declaratory and injunctive
    
    relief as well as damages at the end of the 1994-95 school year. Along with the
    
    complaint, Ms. Bauchman filed a Motion for a Temporary Restraining Order and
    
    Preliminary Injunction, seeking specifically to enjoin the Choir's planned
    
    performance of two songs at West High School's 1995 graduation, and more
    
    generally, to enjoin the defendants from compelling the Choir to perform or
    
    practice Christian devotional songs. Following an emergency hearing, which
    
    dealt solely with the evidence and issues pertaining to the graduation songs, the
    
    district court denied Ms. Bauchman's motion for emergency injunctive relief. The
    
    district court deliberately avoided taking evidence on or ruling with regard to Ms.
    
    Bauchman's request for broader, preliminary injunctive relief, noting that such
    
    request would require an evaluation of the merits of her constitutional claims as a
    
    whole. Ms. Bauchman nevertheless interpreted the district court's order as a final
    
    order denying all requested injunctive relief and filed her first appeal to this
    
    court. 4 Bauchman v. West High School, No. 95-4084.
    
    
          4
            Ms. Bauchman also requested an injunction pending appeal, which we
    granted, thereby enjoining the singing of two songs, "The Lord Bless You and
    Keep You" and "Friends," by the Choir at West High School's 1995 graduation
    ceremonies. When a group of students and members of the audience sang
    "Friends" notwithstanding this court's injunction, Ms. Bauchman petitioned for an
    adjudication of contempt. We partially remanded the matter to the district court
    judge to act as special master to conduct whatever proceedings were necessary to
    
                                              -7-
          Meanwhile, both Mr. Torgerson and the School District moved to dismiss
    
    Ms. Bauchman's complaint. They were joined by a group of Choir students and
    
    their parents who sought and were granted leave to intervene as defendants. For
    
    purposes of considering the motions to dismiss, the district court permitted Ms.
    
    Bauchman to file a "Verified Supplemental Pleading" containing allegations
    
    relating to the defendants' conduct at West High School's 1995 graduation
    
    exercises. After briefing and oral argument, the district court granted defendants'
    
    motions and dismissed the complaint.
    
    
    
          Ms. Bauchman then filed a Motion to Alter or Amend Judgment and for
    
    Reconsideration of Order Granting Defendants' Motions to Dismiss pursuant to
    
    Fed. R. Civ. P. 59(e). In the alternative, Ms. Bauchman sought leave to amend
    
    her complaint and proffered a proposed amended complaint together with eight
    
    affidavits. The proposed amended complaint included additional allegations
    
    regarding the knowledge and actions of the individual school district defendants,
    
    numerous allegations pertaining to Mr. Torgerson's conduct prior to the 1994-95
    
    school year and, for the first time, allegations that Mr. Torgerson selected
    
    religious songs and performance sites for the purpose of promoting religion. The
    
    
    
    resolve the allegations of the contempt petition. After careful review of the
    district court's report, findings of fact and recommendation, we denied Ms.
    Bauchman's contempt petition.
    
                                             -8-
    district court denied Ms. Bauchman's motion for reconsideration, but held her
    
    motion to amend in abeyance pending discovery on the issue of whether, during
    
    the 1994-95 school year, Mr. Torgerson's "selection and rehearsal of Christian
    
    songs as part of the music class curriculum, and the performance of such songs by
    
    the [Choir] at religious venues was primarily for a secular purpose or primarily
    
    for the purpose of promoting or proselytizing religion." Following completion of
    
    discovery, Ms. Bauchman renewed her motion for leave to amend, electing to
    
    stand on the amended pleading proffered prior to discovery; she did, however,
    
    present the district court with numerous affidavits and deposition excerpts to
    
    consider in conjunction with the proposed amended complaint. The district court
    
    denied Ms. Bauchman's renewed motion after full briefing and oral argument.
    
    
    
          Ms. Bauchman's second appeal contests the district court's orders (1)
    
    dismissing her complaint, (2) denying her motion for reconsideration and (3)
    
    denying her motion for leave to amend her complaint. Bauchman v. West High
    
    School, No. 96-4101. We consolidated Ms. Bauchman's two appeals for purposes
    
    of argument and disposition. Additionally, we permitted The American Jewish
    
    Congress to file a brief as amicus curiae in appeal No. 95-4084, and Americans
    
    United for Separation of Church and State and People for the American Way,
    
    Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.), United Church Board for Homeland Ministries of
    
    
                                             -9-
    the United Church of Christ, The American Jewish Committee, Anti-Defamation
    
    League, General Conference of Seventh-Day Adventists, and Union of American
    
    Hebrew Congregations to file briefs as amici curiae in appeal No. 96-4101.
    
    
    
          In June 1997, subsequent to oral argument, the Defendant-Intervenors filed
    
    a "Suggestion of Mootness." Mr. Torgerson and the School District joined in this
    
    suggestion, which asserts Ms. Bauchman's graduation from high school renders
    
    her claims for injunctive and declaratory relief moot and requests that we dismiss
    
    those claims. Mr. Torgerson and the School District further assert Ms.
    
    Bauchman's damage claims under 42 U.S.C. § 1983 should be dismissed as (1) the
    
    individual defendants are qualifiedly immune, and (2) Ms. Bauchman has failed to
    
    allege sufficient facts to establish supervisory liability against the school district.
    
    In response, Ms. Bauchman denies any of her claims are moot and urges this court
    
    to retain jurisdiction over all aspects of her appeal, except for her Religious
    
    Freedom Restoration Act claims. 5
    
    
    
    
          5
             As Ms. Bauchman does not appeal the dismissal of her Religious
    Freedom and Restoration Act claim, nor, apparently, the dismissal of her claims
    against the High School itself, we do not further address those claims.
    
    
                                              -10-
    III.   MOOTNESS AND PENDENT JURISDICTION DETERMINATIONS
    
           A.    DISMISSAL OF APPEAL NO. 95-4084
    
           As indicated above, Ms. Bauchman's first appeal challenges the district
    
    court's denial of her Motion for Temporary Restraining Order and Preliminary
    
    Injunction. Notably, however, this court's injunction pending appeal and
    
    subsequent order adopting the district court's recommendation to dismiss Ms.
    
    Bauchman's contempt petition effectively resolved all issues pertaining to the
    
    Choir's performance of "Friends" and "The Lord Bless You and Keep You" at
    
    West High School's 1995 graduation. After carefully examining the briefs and
    
    record in both appeals, we conclude that all issues concerning the merits of Ms.
    
    Bauchman's broader request for a preliminary injunction are subsumed into the
    
    issues raised in her second appeal, Bauchman v. West High School, No. 96-4101.
    
    We therefore dismiss appeal No. 95-4084 as moot and limit our discussion to the
    
    issues raised in appeal No. 96-4101.
    
    
    
           B.    DISMISSAL OF DECLARATORY AND INJUNCTIVE CLAIMS
    
           This court may only adjudicate live controversies -- controversies that exist
    
    at all stages of appellate review, not just on the date the lawsuit or appeal is
    
    initiated. Fischbach v. New Mexico Activities Ass'n, 
    38 F.3d 1159
    , 1160 (10th
    
    Cir. 1994). We have held that when an individual graduates from school there no
    
    
                                              -11-
    longer exists a live controversy necessary to support an action to participate in
    
    interscholastic activity. Accordingly, such action is deemed moot upon
    
    graduation. Id. at 1160. As Ms. Bauchman has now graduated from high school,
    
    there can be no reasonable expectation that she could again be subjected to the
    
    alleged unconstitutional conduct of Mr. Torgerson or the other Salt Lake City
    
    School District defendants. The defendants no longer have the power or
    
    opportunity to adversely affect Ms. Bauchman's constitutional rights. We
    
    therefore agree with defendants Ms. Bauchman's claims for injunctive relief are
    
    moot and dismiss her appeal as to those claims. For these same reasons we deny
    
    Ms. Bauchman's Application for an Injunction Pending Appeal filed August 21,
    
    1996.
    
    
    
            Although the question is a closer one, we further agree with defendants Ms.
    
    Bauchman's claims for declaratory relief are now moot. Green v. Branson, 
    108 F.3d 1296
     (10th Cir. 1997) controls our decision. Since Ms. Bauchman has
    
    successfully completed her secondary education, she is no longer subject to the
    
    curriculum chosen by or the conduct of Mr. Torgerson or the other school district
    
    defendants. The entry of a declaratory judgment in Ms. Bauchman's favor
    
    therefore would have no effect on the defendants' behavior toward her as a
    
    student. It would merely amount to a declaration the defendants had violated her
    
    
                                             -12-
    constitutional rights. Thus, as in Green, declaratory relief would be superfluous
    
    to the adjudication of Ms. Bauchman's §1983 damages claim. Id. at 1299, 1300.
    
    
    
          Ms. Bauchman's attempt to salvage her claims for declaratory relief by
    
    suggesting both she and her mother, Cheryl Bauchman, "maintain an active legal
    
    interest in the education of the younger Bauchman children," is to no avail. The
    
    only rights and interests asserted in the complaint and amended complaint are
    
    those personal to Ms. Rachel Bauchman. Her mother is referenced in the
    
    pleadings solely as the "parent and guardian" (i.e. representative) of Ms. Rachel
    
    Bauchman. Under these circumstances where (1) the parent is not described as a
    
    plaintiff, (2) no theories have been advanced to support an individual action by
    
    the parent, and (3) the complaint contains no allegations as to other children, we
    
    conclude Ms. Rachel Bauchman is the only plaintiff before the court. See Adler
    
    v. Duval County Sch. Bd., 
    112 F.3d 1475
    , 1478 (11th Cir. 1997); see also
    
    Laurenzo v. Mississippi High Sch. Activities Ass'n, 
    662 F.2d 1117
    , 1120-21 (5th
    
    Cir. 1981). As the law requires that Ms. Bauchman's legal interest in the outcome
    
    of this appeal be greater than the mere satisfaction of a declaration she was
    
    wronged, we deem her claims for declaratory relief moot and dismiss her appeal
    
    
    
    
                                             -13-
    as to those claims. 6
    
    
    
           C.     REMAND FOR DISMISSAL OF STATE CONSTITUTIONAL
                  CLAIMS
    
           Ms. Bauchman asserts defendants' conduct violated her state as well as
    
    federal constitutional rights. More specifically, she alleges the defendants'
    
    policies and actions (1) "constitute the enactment of a law respecting the
    
    establishment of religion and infringing plaintiff's right of conscience in violation
    
    of Article I, Section 4 of the Constitution of Utah," (2) "have prevented [her]
    
    from freely exercising her own religion ... in violation of Article I, Section 4 of
    
    the Constitution of Utah," (3) "deprived [her] of her freedom of speech ... in
    
    violation of Article I, Section 15 of the Constitution of Utah," and (4) "deprived
    
    [her] of her rights to a public education free from sectarian control in violation of
    
    
           6
              Relying on Anderson v. Green, 
    513 U.S. 557
     (1995) (per curiam), Ms.
    Bauchman requests that we remand her claims for declaratory and injunctive
    relief to the district court with instructions to vacate all parts of the district court's
    decisions that concerned those claims. While we agree with Ms. Bauchman the
    circumstances in this case involuntarily mooted her declaratory and injunctive
    claims, this case differs from Anderson in one important respect -- in Anderson
    the Supreme Court dismissed the entire appeal, not just certain claims. Id. at 560.
    Since we proceed to decide the substantive merits of Ms. Bauchman's § 1983
    claim, we decline to parse out and vacate certain portions of the district court's
    decision which, in fact, may be inseparable from the substantive issues we
    address. However, by dismissing Ms. Bauchman's appeal as to her claims for
    injunctive and declaratory relief we do not intend to prohibit the parties from
    making any appropriate requests to the district court regarding its final disposition
    of those claims.
    
                                               -14-
    Article X, Section 1 of the Constitution of Utah." After disposing of Ms.
    
    Bauchman's federal claims, the district court dismissed Ms. Bauchman's state
    
    constitutional claims on the merits, concluding the state constitutional provisions
    
    upon which Ms. Bauchman relies "are not self-executing and contain no
    
    provisions or mechanism for a court action or remedy." The district court further
    
    ruled Ms. Bauchman's state law claims were barred by the Utah Governmental
    
    Immunity Act, Utah Code Ann., § 63-30-3(1).
    
    
    
          The district court considered Ms. Bauchman's state law claims under the
    
    doctrine of pendent jurisdiction. Pendent jurisdiction is exercised on a
    
    discretionary basis, keeping in mind considerations of judicial economy,
    
    convenience and fairness to the litigants. United Mine Workers v. Gibbs, 
    383 U.S. 715
    , 726 (1966); see also 28 U.S.C. § 1367(c)(3). The United States
    
    Supreme Court has counseled, pendent jurisdiction "need not be exercised in
    
    every case in which it is found to exist.... Needless decisions of state law should
    
    be avoided both as a matter of comity and to promote justice between the parties,
    
    by procuring for them a surer-footed reading of applicable law." Gibbs, 383 U.S.
    
    at 726. If federal claims are dismissed before trial, leaving only issues of state
    
    law, "the federal court should decline the exercise of jurisdiction by dismissing
    
    the case without prejudice." Carnegie-Mellon University v. Cohill, 
    484 U.S. 343
    ,
    
    
                                             -15-
    350 (1988); Gibbs, 383 U.S. at 726.
    
    
    
          The district court dismissed Ms. Bauchman's federal claims on the
    
    pleadings. We are upholding that decision. The state law questions presented in
    
    this appeal concern whether the Utah Constitution provides a private right of
    
    action against government establishment of religion, infringement of freedom of
    
    conscience and sectarian control of public schools. Utah courts have never
    
    squarely addressed this issue. Accordingly, any exercise of federal jurisdiction
    
    over Ms. Bauchman's state claims seriously implicates principles of comity.
    
    Under these circumstances, Carnegie-Mellon University and Gibbs counsel us to
    
    leave the development and application of private causes of action under the Utah
    
    Constitution to the Utah courts. See Ball v. Renner, 
    54 F.3d 664
    , 669 (10th Cir.
    
    1995). The beneficial effect of permitting a Utah state court to determine the
    
    private rights of action under the Utah Constitution far outweighs any negative
    
    consequences (i.e., delay) of declining to exercise pendent jurisdiction. We
    
    therefore decline to review the merits of Ms. Bauchman's state law claims.
    
    Instead, we conclude the district court abused its discretion by exercising
    
    jurisdiction over those claims and remand Ms. Bauchman's state law claims to the
    
    district court with instructions to dismiss without prejudice for want of federal
    
    jurisdiction.
    
    
                                             -16-
    IV.   DISCUSSION
    
          Having narrowed our adjudication to Ms. Bauchman's § 1983 claim, we
    
    proceed to address the threshold inquiry in the examination of such a claim:
    
    whether Ms. Bauchman has sufficiently alleged a violation of her clearly
    
    established constitutional rights. Because we hold the facts alleged by Ms.
    
    Bauchman cannot be held to state a claim for denial of her constitutional rights
    
    under the Free Speech, Free Exercise and Establishment clauses of the First
    
    Amendment, we do not further consider whether the various defendants are
    
    entitled to immunity. Siegert v. Gilley, 
    500 U.S. 226
    , 227, 233 (1991); see also,
    
    Doe v. Bagan, 
    41 F.3d 571
    , 577 n.7 (10th Cir. 1994).
    
    
    
          A.     DISMISSAL OF MS. BAUCHMAN'S ORIGINAL COMPLAINT
    
          The district court dismissed Ms. Bauchman's original complaint inter alia
    
    because the complaint and supplemental pleading, construed in a light most
    
    favorable to Ms. Bauchman, failed to allege sufficient facts to support her
    
    Establishment, Free Exercise and Free Speech claims. On appeal, Ms. Bauchman
    
    argues her original complaint satisfied liberal federal pleading requirements and
    
    adequately stated a cause of action under the federal constitution.
    
    
    
    
                                            -17-
                 1.    Standard of Review.
    
          It is well established the sufficiency of a complaint to withstand a motion
    
    to dismiss under Fed. R. Civ. P. 12(b)(6) is a question of law we review de novo. 7
    
    Jojola v. Chavez, 
    55 F.3d 488
    , 490 (10th Cir. 1995). In conducting such review,
    
    we must accept all the well-pleaded facts of the complaint as true and must
    
    construe them in the light most favorable to the plaintiff. Id.; Ramirez v.
    
    Oklahoma Dep’t of Mental Health, 
    41 F.3d 584
    , 586 (10th Cir. 1994). Dismissal
    
    is appropriate only if the plaintiff can prove no set of facts in support of the claim
    
    entitling her to relief. Ramirez, 41 F.3d at 586. However, counsel may not
    
    overcome pleading deficiencies with arguments that extend beyond the
    
    allegations contained in the complaint. The complaint itself must show Ms.
    
    Bauchman is "entitled to relief" under each claim raised. Fed. R. Civ. P. 8(a))(2).
    
    
    
    
          7
             We acknowledge this court has never settled on a standard for review of
    "constitutional facts" such as a district court's findings concerning First
    Amendment violations. Gaylor v. United States, 
    74 F.3d 214
    , 216 (10th Cir.),
    cert. denied, 
    116 S. Ct. 1830
     (1996); Robinson v. City of Edmond, 
    68 F.3d 1226
    ,
    1230 n.7 (10th Cir. 1995), cert. denied, 
    116 S. Ct. 1702
    . Nevertheless, we
    decline an opportunity to do so in this case as the facts are insufficient to support
    Ms. Bauchman's constitutional claims under either a de novo or a clearly
    erroneous standard.
    
    
                                             -18-
                 2.     Sufficiency of Allegations to Support Ms. Bauchman's First
                        Amendment Claims
    
                        a.    Establishment Clause.
    
          The gravamen of Ms. Bauchman's complaint is her claim the defendants'
    
    policies and actions violate the Establishment Clause of the First Amendment.
    
    The First Amendment states the government "shall make no law respecting an
    
    establishment of religion." This prohibition extends to state government,
    
    including the Utah public schools, by operation of the Fourteenth Amendment.
    
    
    
          Determining whether Ms. Bauchman has alleged facts sufficient to support
    
    her claim that defendants have violated this prohibition is not an easy task, as
    
    there is no bright line standard we can apply. The United States Supreme Court
    
    repeatedly has recognized there can be no precise Establishment Clause test
    
    capable of ready application, and therefore has resisted confining such sensitive
    
    analyses to "any single test or criterion." Lynch v. Donnelly, 
    465 U.S. 668
    , 678-
    
    79 (1984). Moreover, the Supreme Court has never specifically addressed
    
    circumstances like those presented here, i.e., the constitutionality of a public
    
    school teacher's conduct in selecting course materials with religious content as
    
    part of a broader, secular curriculum. To the extent the Supreme Court has
    
    attempted to prescribe a general analytic framework within which to evaluate
    
    Establishment Clause claims, its efforts have proven ineffective. Indeed, many
    
                                             -19-
    believe the Court's modern Establishment Clause jurisprudence is in "hopeless
    
    disarray," Rosenberger v. University of Virginia, 
    55 U.S. 819
    , 861 (1995)
    
    (Thomas, J. concurring), and in need of "[s]ubstantial revision." County of
    
    Allegheny v. American Civil Liberties Union, 
    492 U.S. 573
    , 656 (1989) (Kennedy,
    
    J. concurring in part and dissenting in part).
    
    
    
          Our attempt to glean an appropriate standard for this case from existing,
    
    muddled Establishment Clause precedent begins with Lemon v. Kurtzman, 
    403 U.S. 602
     (1971), which is recognized as the benchmark case for Establishment
    
    Clause analysis. Applying Lemon, government action does not violate the
    
    Establishment Clause so long as it (1) has a secular purpose, (2) does not have the
    
    principal or primary effect of advancing or inhibiting religion, and (3) does not
    
    foster an excessive entanglement. 403 U.S. at 612-13.
    
    
    
          Beginning in the 1980s, however, the Lemon analysis came under vigorous
    
    attack by Justices and commentators alike. See, e.g., County of Allegheny, 492
    
    U.S. at 655 (Kennedy, J. concurring in part and dissenting in part) (does not
    
    advocate or adopt Lemon test as primary guide for resolving difficult
    
    Establishment Clause issues); Texas Monthly, Inc. v. Bullock, 
    489 U.S. 1
    , 33
    
    (1989) (Scalia, J., dissenting) (use of Lemon to deny tax exemption not founded
    
    
                                             -20-
    on Constitution, precedent, or history); Edwards v. Aguillard, 
    482 U.S. 578
    , 639-
    
    40 (1987) (Scalia, J., dissenting) (criticizing inconsistent application of Lemon
    
    test); Aguilar v. Felton, 
    473 U.S. 402
    , 419 (1985) (Burger, C.J., dissenting)
    
    (Lemon test too formalistic); Wallace v. Jaffree, 
    472 U.S. 38
    , 112 (1985)
    
    (Rehnquist, C.J., dissenting) (Lemon test blurred and indistinct); Lynch, 465 U.S.
    
    at 679 (Lemon test not overriding criteria); Mueller v. Allen, 
    463 U.S. 388
    , 394
    
    (1983) (Lemon test nothing but helpful signpost); Marsh v. Chambers, 
    463 U.S. 783
    , 792-95 (1983) (Court ignored Lemon in favor of historical argument); see
    
    also, Stuart W. Bowen, Jr., Is Lemon a Lemon? Crosscurrents in Contemporary
    
    Establishment Clause Jurisprudence, 22 St. Mary's L.J. 129 (1990) ("the Court
    
    should clarify its [Establishment Clause] analysis by abandoning Lemon and
    
    adopting a test that more accurately reflects the framers' original understanding of
    
    the word 'establishment'"). Acknowledging Lemon's weaknesses, Justice
    
    O'Connor seized the opportunity in Lynch v. Donnelly to draft a concurring
    
    opinion encouraging the Court to refine the Lemon analysis to focus more on
    
    whether the government is "endorsing" religion. 465 U.S. at 687-94.
    
    
    
          Applying Justice O'Connor's refined analysis, the government
    
    impermissibly endorses religion if its conduct has either (1) the purpose or (2) the
    
    effect of conveying a message that "religion or a particular religious belief is
    
    
                                             -21-
    favored or preferred." County of Allegheny, 492 U.S. at 592-93; see also Capitol
    
    Square Review & Advisory Bd. v. Pinette, 
    515 U.S. 753
    , 763 (1995) (plurality);
    
    Lynch 465 U.S. at 687-94 (O'Connor, J., concurring). Recent cases suggest the
    
    purpose component of the endorsement test should evaluate whether the
    
    government's "actual" purpose is to endorse or disapprove of religion (i.e., did
    
    the government intend to endorse or disapprove of religion); Edwards, 482 U.S. at
    
    585; Jaffree, 472 U.S. at 56 (adopting Justice O'Connor's revision of the purpose
    
    component from Lynch v. Donnelly). The effect component, on the other hand,
    
    should evaluate whether a "reasonable observer," aware of the history and context
    
    of the community in which the conduct occurs, would view the practice as
    
    communicating a message of government endorsement or disapproval. Capitol
    
    Square, 115 S. Ct. at 2455 (O'Connor, J., concurring).
    
    
    
          Justice O'Connor's "endorsement test" is now widely accepted as the
    
    controlling analytical framework for evaluating Establishment Clause claims. See
    
    James M. Lewis & Michael L. Vild, A Controversial Twist of Lemon: The
    
    Endorsement Test as the Establishment Clause Standard, 65 Notre Dame L. Rev.
    
    671 (1990). It would be wrong, however, to suggest the Court is unanimous in its
    
    adoption of the endorsement test. Moreover, even the Justices who have adopted
    
    the endorsement test do not agree on how it should be applied. Id. at 687-88.
    
    
                                            -22-
          For example, although the Court has indicated a failure to satisfy the
    
    purpose component of the endorsement test alone is sufficient to invalidate
    
    government action, Edwards, 482 U.S. at 585; cf., id. at 610 (Scalia, J.,
    
    dissenting) (questioning the premise that government action can be invalidated on
    
    the basis of motivation alone, without regard to the effect), the Court rarely has
    
    decided cases based solely on the purpose component. See Jaffree, 472 U.S. at 75
    
    (O'Connor, J. concurring). When it has, the overriding religious purpose of the
    
    government action has been obvious, leaving little need to elaborate on the
    
    appropriate scope of the purpose inquiry. See Edwards, 482 U.S. at 613 (Scalia,
    
    J., dissenting) (citations omitted); Lynch, 465 U.S. at 680 (citations omitted). To
    
    the extent the Court has delved into the government's subjective intent in its
    
    evaluation of the actual purpose, such approach has been openly condemned by
    
    two members of the present Court -- Chief Justice Rehnquist and Justice Scalia.
    
    Edwards, 482 U.S. at 610 (Rehnquist, C.J, and Scalia, J., dissenting). According
    
    to Justice Scalia, who has proposed eliminating the purpose component
    
    altogether, discerning the government's subjective intent is "almost always an
    
    impossible task ... [t]o look for the sole purpose of even a single legislator is
    
    probably to look for something that does not exist." Id. at 636-37 (emphasis in
    
    original). Consequently, despite Sisyphean efforts, application of this component
    
    yields unprincipled results. Id. at 636; Jaffree, 472 U.S. at 112 (Rehnquist, J.,
    
    
                                              -23-
    dissenting).
    
    
    
          Having struggled to meaningfully apply the purpose component of the
    
    endorsement test to the alleged Establishment Clause violation in this case, we
    
    agree it is an unworkable standard that offers no useful guidance to courts,
    
    legislators or other government actors who must assess whether government
    
    conduct goes against the grain of religious liberty the Establishment Clause is
    
    intended to protect. Nevertheless, the uncertainty surrounding the present Court's
    
    position regarding the appropriate scope of the endorsement test and the
    
    appropriate Establishment Clause analysis, in general, cautions us to apply both
    
    the purpose and effect components of the refined endorsement test, together with
    
    the entanglement criterion imposed by Lemon, when evaluating Ms. Bauchman's
    
    Establishment Clause claim. 8 To survive a motion to dismiss, Ms. Bauchman
    
    
          8
             The Court also has examined the coercive effect a school-sponsored
    religious activity may have on students. See Lee v. Weisman, 
    505 U.S. 577
    , 592
    (1992). In Lee, the Court reaffirmed its longstanding recognition "that prayer
    exercises in public schools carry a particular risk of indirect coercion," and
    rejected the government's argument that providing a student with the option of not
    attending her high school graduation excused any inducement or coercion inherent
    in the ceremony itself. Id. at 592-99. According to the Court, it is overly
    formalistic to suggest a teenage student has a real choice not to attend her
    graduation -- "one of life's most significant occasions." Id. at 595.
    
          For reasons discussed more thoroughly below, we do not believe the
    singing of religious songs alone constitutes prayer. Nor do we consider the
    singing of religious songs in religious venues to constitute prayer without
    
                                            -24-
    must allege facts which, accepted as true, suggest a violation of any part of this
    
    analysis.
    
    
    
          Ms. Bauchman's factual allegations concerning violation of her
    
    Establishment Clause rights fall into three categories: the performance of
    
    religious music, the performance at religious sites, and the public ridicule and
    
    harassment she experienced as a result of the defendants' collective response to
    
    her objections. More precisely, Ms. Bauchman first claims she was repeatedly
    
    required to practice and publicly perform Christian devotional music with lyrics
    
    that sing praise to "Jesus Christ our savior" and "Jesus Christ our Lord," and that
    
    include other devotional references to God. She alleges a preponderance of the
    
    religious songs represented the works of contemporary Christian songwriters.
    
    Second, Ms. Bauchman claims Mr. Torgerson selected explicitly Christian
    
    religious sites such as the Church of the Madeleine, the First Presbyterian Church
    
    and Temple Square for Choir performances. She alleges these sites are dominated
    
    by crosses and other religious images. Finally, Ms. Bauchman alleges when she
    
    and her parents expressed their opposition to Mr. Torgerson's selection of songs
    
    
    
    
    additional facts showing that such activity took place in a worshipful context.
    The facts as alleged by Ms. Bauchman simply do not identify a religious activity
    analogous to that addressed in Lee or other school prayer cases. Accordingly, we
    conclude a coercion analysis is inapplicable to the facts at hand.
    
                                             -25-
    and performance venues, Mr. Torgerson (1) criticized Ms. Bauchman in front of
    
    her classmates, "specifically and by inference"; (2) blamed Ms. Bauchman and her
    
    parents for the cancellation of the Choir's spring tour and rebuffed Ms.
    
    Bauchman's inquiry regarding the "Covert Tour" organized for Christian Choir
    
    members "under the guise of creating a Boy Scout Explorer Post"; (3) "directed
    
    the Choir class's attention to the fact that plaintiff is a Jew in such a way as to
    
    emphasize that her beliefs deviated from those of the Christian majority's"; (4)
    
    shared a letter he had received from Mr. Bauchman with the father of another
    
    Choir member "with the expectation and desire that [the Choir member's father]
    
    would distribute the letter to other parents of students in the Choir Class so as to
    
    incite those parents and their children to punish [Ms. Bauchman] and her parents
    
    by means of public ridicule and vilification"; and (5) stated he would not change
    
    his conduct. Ms. Bauchman alleges Mr. Torgerson "intended to promote hostility
    
    toward and ridicule of [Ms. Bauchman] by her fellow students as punishment for
    
    her assertion of her constitutional rights or in an attempt to pressure her to
    
    abandon those rights," and as a result of Mr. Torgerson's actions, she "was
    
    subjected to public ridicule and humiliation, manifesting itself, in part, in racial
    
    and religious epithets from her fellow students."
    
    
    
          We first consider whether allegations regarding the singing of religious
    
    
                                              -26-
    songs at religious sites, alone, state a claim under the criteria we have set forth.
    
    Notably, in her original complaint, Ms. Bauchman alleges no facts to expressly
    
    indicate the purpose for selecting a majority of religious songs to be sung at
    
    religious venues or that the Choir curriculum has the effect on a reasonable
    
    observer of advancing or endorsing religious beliefs. Nor does she allege she was
    
    required to sing religious songs as part of a religious exercise per se. Rather, Ms.
    
    Bauchman simply alleges Mr. Torgerson selected and required her to perform a
    
    preponderance of "Christian devotional" songs in places dominated by crosses and
    
    other religious symbols. We will not infer an impermissible purpose or effect in
    
    the absence of any supporting factual allegations. See Lynch, 465 U.S. at 680
    
    (district court erroneously inferred from religious nature of crèche that city had no
    
    secular purpose for display); Mueller v. Allen, 
    463 U.S. 388
    , 394-95 (1983)
    
    (Court is reluctant to attribute unconstitutional motives to the states). However,
    
    we will evaluate whether Ms. Bauchman's allegations concerning the selection
    
    and performance of songs alone suggest religious endorsement or the school's
    
    excessive entanglement with religion.
    
    
    
    
                                              -27-
    Endorsement
    
          Vis à Vis Purpose
    
          Notwithstanding existing uncertainty regarding the propriety or scope of
    
    this component of the endorsement test, certain principles governing our inquiry
    
    into the government's actual purpose are beyond dispute. Namely, the
    
    Constitution does not require that the purpose of every government-sanctioned
    
    activity be unrelated to religion. Jaffree, 472 U.S. at 64; City of Albuquerque v.
    
    Browner, 
    97 F.3d 415
    , 428 (10th Cir. 1996), cert. denied, 
    118 S. Ct. 410
     (1997).
    
    Courts have long recognized the historical, social and cultural significance of
    
    religion in our lives and in the world, generally. Courts also have recognized that
    
    "a variety of motives and purposes are implicated" by government activity in a
    
    pluralistic society. Lynch, 465 U.S. at 680. Accordingly, there is a legitimate
    
    time, manner and place for the discussion of religion in the public classroom.
    
    School Dist. of Abington v. Schempp, 
    374 U.S. 203
    , 225 (1963); Florey v. Sioux
    
    Falls Sch. Dist. 49-5, 
    619 F.2d 1311
    , 1315-16 (8th Cir. 1980).
    
    
    
          To sustain her Establishment Clause claim, Ms. Bauchman therefore must
    
    allege facts indicating the defendants have no "clearly secular purpose" for
    
    selecting songs with religious content and requiring the choir to perform in
    
    religious venues. See Jaffree, 472 U.S. at 56 (conduct violates the Establishment
    
    
                                             -28-
    Clause if it is "entirely motivated by a purpose to advance religion"). In the
    
    alternative, Ms. Bauchman can allege facts showing that in spite of the existence
    
    of a legitimate secular purpose(s), the defendants' "actual" purpose is to endorse
    
    or disapprove of religion. See County of Allegheny, 492 U.S. at 592; Edwards,
    
    482 U.S. at 585; Jaffree, 472 U.S. at 56; Lynch, 465 U.S. at 690 (O'Connor, J.
    
    concurring). Notably, however, we cannot allow Ms. Bauchman to support her
    
    claim with allegations focused solely on the religious component of classroom
    
    activity, since such approach would inevitably lead to invalidation of the activity
    
    under the Establishment Clause. See Lynch, 465 U.S. at 680. At the same time,
    
    our inquiry into the government's purpose should be "deferential and limited."
    
    Jaffree. 472 U.S. at 74 (O'Connor, J., concurring) We should resist attributing
    
    unconstitutional motives to the government, particularly where we can discern a
    
    plausible secular purpose. See id. at 74-75; Mueller, 463 U.S. at 394-95 (1983).
    
    
    
          Here, we discern a number of plausible secular purposes for the defendants'
    
    conduct. 9 For example, it is recognized that a significant percentage of serious
    
    
          9
             This is not a case in which we can evaluate the legitimacy and sincerity
    of a legislative statement regarding a statute's secular purpose, as the Supreme
    Court has so often done in its Establishment Clause cases. Moreover, since Ms.
    Bauchman's Complaint was dismissed pursuant to Fed. R. Civ. P. 12(b)(6), and
    our review therefore is limited to the allegations in her complaint, we cannot
    evaluate direct statements from Mr. Torgerson or the other defendants regarding
    the purpose for selecting religious songs and religious venues as part of the
    
                                             -29-
    choral music is based on religious themes or text. See, e.g., Doe v. Duncanville
    
    Indp. Sch. Dist., 
    70 F.3d 402
    , 407-08 (5th Cir. 1995). Any choral curriculum
    
    designed to expose students to the full array of vocal music culture therefore can
    
    be expected to reflect a significant number of religious songs. Moreover, a vocal
    
    music instructor would be expected to select any particular piece of sacred choral
    
    music, like any particular piece of secular choral music, in part for its unique
    
    qualities useful to teach a variety of vocal music skills (i.e., sight reading,
    
    intonation, harmonization, expression). Plausible secular reasons also exist for
    
    performing school choir concerts in churches and other venues associated with
    
    religious institutions. Such venues often are acoustically superior to high school
    
    auditoriums or gymnasiums, yet still provide adequate seating capacity.
    
    Moreover, by performing in such venues, an instructor can showcase his choir to
    
    the general public in an atmosphere conducive to the performance of serious
    
    choral music.
    
    
    
    
    broader vocal music curriculum at West High School. We do not believe,
    however, that the procedural posture of this case should prevent us from
    acknowledging prevalent, archetypical secular purposes for defendants' conduct.
    See Jaffree, 472 U.S. at 75 (O'Connor, J., concurring) (reasoning even if there is
    no express secular purpose, a statute "should be held to have an improper purpose
    only if it is beyond purview that endorsement of religion or a religious belief 'was
    and is the law's reason for existence'") (quoting Epperson v. Arkansas, 
    393 U.S. 97
    , 108 (1968)). If we were so limited, Establishment Clause claims would be
    immune from attack under Fed. R. Civ. P. Rule 12(b)(6).
    
                                              -30-
          Ms. Bauchman does not allege in her complaint that defendants lacked a
    
    secular purpose. Ms. Bauchman further fails to allege any facts indicating (1)
    
    West High School's vocal music curriculum was out of step with traditional public
    
    high school vocal music curricula, (2) the acoustics and/or seating at the selected
    
    performance venues were unsuitable for the performance and public enjoyment of
    
    serious vocal music, or (3) the defendants' "actual" purpose was otherwise
    
    inconsistent with the prevalent secular objectives noted above. Ms. Bauchman's
    
    allegations instead focus solely on (1) the religious component of the Choir's
    
    activities -- she was required to practice and perform songs with religious lyrics at
    
    sites dominated by crosses and other religious images, and (2) the defendants'
    
    conduct, not in selecting such songs and venues (the challenged activity), but in
    
    response to her objections -- she was ridiculed for objecting to such songs and
    
    performance sites, and defendants inadequately and inappropriately responded to
    
    her objections. These allegations are insufficient to support her Establishment
    
    Clause claim given the obvious secular purposes for defendants' conduct. We see
    
    no reason to conclude that defendants' selection of religious songs and religious
    
    performance venues serves an impermissible purpose simply because some of
    
    those songs and venues, which undisputedly represent only part of the Choir's
    
    repertoire and performance venues, may coincide with religious beliefs different
    
    from those of Ms. Bauchman. See Edwards, 482 U.S. at 605 (Powell, J.,
    
    
                                             -31-
    concurring) (emphasizing that a decision respecting the subject matter to be
    
    taught in public schools does not violate the Establishment Clause simply because
    
    the material to be taught happens to coincide or harmonize with the tenets of
    
    some or all religions) (quotations omitted); Bowen v. Kendrick, 
    487 U.S. 589
    , 604
    
    n.8 (1988). Accordingly, Ms. Bauchman's complaint fails to state an
    
    Establishment Clause claim under the purpose component of the endorsement test.
    
    
    
          Vis à Vis Effect
    
          To state a claim under this component of the endorsement test, Ms.
    
    Bauchman must allege facts indicating the Choir curriculum or Choir activities
    
    have a principle or primary effect of advancing or endorsing religion. United
    
    States Supreme Court precedent "plainly contemplate[s] that on occasion some
    
    advancement of religion will result from governmental action." Lynch, 465 U.S.
    
    at 683. However, not every governmental activity that confers a remote,
    
    incidental or indirect benefit upon religion is constitutionally invalid. Id. Thus,
    
    as noted above, the Constitution does not forbid all mention of religion in public
    
    schools. The Establishment Clause prohibits only those school activities which,
    
    in the eyes of a reasonable observer, advance or promote religion or a particular
    
    religious belief. This is an objective inquiry, not an inquiry into whether
    
    particular individuals might be offended by the content or location of the Choir's
    
    
                                             -32-
    performance, or consider such performances to endorse religion. Gaylor, 74 F.3d
    
    at 217.
    
    
    
          We believe a reasonable observer aware of the purpose, context and history
    
    of public education in Salt Lake City, including the historical tension between the
    
    government and the Mormon Church, and the traditional and ubiquitous presence
    
    of religious themes in vocal music, would perceive the following with respect to
    
    Ms. Bauchman's factual allegations concerning the Choir curriculum and
    
    performance venues: the Choir represents one of Salt Lake City's public high
    
    schools and is comprised of a diverse group of students; many of the Choir's
    
    songs have religious content -- content predominately representative of Judeo-
    
    Christian beliefs; in contrast to a church choir, this Choir also performs a variety
    
    of secular songs; the Choir's talent is displayed in the diverse array of songs
    
    performed and in a number of different public (religious and nonreligious)
    
    settings, all of which reflect the community's culture and heritage. Certainly, any
    
    given observer will give more or less meaning to the lyrics of a particular song
    
    sung in a particular venue based on that observer's individual experiences and
    
    spiritual beliefs. However, the natural consequences of the Choir's alleged
    
    activities, viewed in context and in their entirety by a reasonable observer, would
    
    not be the advancement or endorsement of religion. Ms. Bauchman's complaint
    
    
                                             -33-
    therefore fails to support a claim that the Choir curriculum or Choir activities
    
    have a principle or primary effect of endorsing religion.
    
    
    
    Entanglement
    
          The entanglement analysis typically is applied to circumstances in which
    
    the state is involving itself with a recognized religious activity or institution. See
    
    Florey, 619 F.2d at 1318. For the reasons discussed above, we have rejected the
    
    notion that Ms. Bauchman's allegations regarding the Choir's singing of religious
    
    songs in religious venues alone support a claim that defendants' conduct endorses
    
    religion. Instead, we believe a reasonable observer would conclude the selection
    
    of religious songs from a body of choral music predominated by songs with
    
    religious themes and text, and the selection of public performance venues
    
    affiliated with religious institutions, without more, amount to religiously neutral
    
    educational choices. 10 Consequently, we perceive no state involvement with
    
    recognized religious activity.
    
    
    
          To the extent Ms. Bauchman suggests her allegations regarding past Spring
    
    
          10
              Accordingly, we decline Ms. Bauchman's invitation to more closely
    evaluate the number and quality of religious songs selected for the Choir. The
    Constitution does not contemplate nor require judicial micro-management of the
    religious content of public education. Indeed, it would be entirely impractical to
    attempt such an endeavor.
    
                                              -34-
    Choir tours and a "covert" 1995 Spring tour are sufficient to support a claim of
    
    impermissible entanglement, we disagree. Ms. Bauchman fails to allege she
    
    participated in any past Spring tours and thus cannot be heard to claim her
    
    constitutional rights were violated as a result of any alleged Choir participation in
    
    religious services which may have occurred during those tours. Ms. Bauchman's
    
    allegation Mr. Torgerson "covertly organized a new Choir Class tour ... on public
    
    school property under the pretense of creating a Boy Scout 'Explorer Post'" lacks
    
    any facts to indicate such tour was conducted or actions were taken to involve the
    
    Choir in religious activity. In sum, we find no basis in Ms. Bauchman's complaint
    
    to suggest Defendants' alleged conduct amounts to unconstitutional entanglement.
    
    
    
    Extraneous Allegations
    
          Having determined Ms. Bauchman's allegations concerning the singing of
    
    religious songs at religious sites do not implicate the Establishment Clause, we
    
    must next address the relevance, if any, of her remaining allegations that she was
    
    subjected to public ridicule and harassment as a result of defendants' conduct.
    
    Certainly, Ms. Bauchman's allegations she was criticized and retaliated against for
    
    opposing the religious content of the Choir curriculum, taken as true, evidence a
    
    lack of sensitivity, crudeness and poor judgment unbefitting of high school
    
    students, their parents, and especially, public school teachers and administrators.
    
    
                                             -35-
    However, such claims do not rise to the level of a constitutional violation. Nor
    
    can they be used to breathe constitutional life into otherwise unactionable
    
    conduct. The fact that the defendants did not change their behavior in accordance
    
    with Ms. Bauchman's demands and reacted negatively and/or offensively to those
    
    demands simply cannot be viewed as support for her claim that the Choir's
    
    performance of religious music at religious venues furthered a religious purpose,
    
    advanced or favored religion or a particular religious belief, or otherwise
    
    entangled the public school with religion. We reject this "backdoor" attempt to
    
    substantiate an otherwise flawed constitutional claim and conclude the district
    
    court properly dismissed Ms. Bauchman's Establishment Clause claim.
    
    
    
                        b.    Free Exercise Clause.
    
          Ms. Bauchman claims defendants violated the Free Exercise Clause by
    
    compelling her to participate in religious exercises in a public school setting,
    
    against her expressed desires and religious convictions. Her factual allegations in
    
    support of this contention can be summarized as follows: Mr. Torgerson
    
    repeatedly required Ms. Bauchman, a Jewish student, to practice and publicly
    
    perform Christian devotional music containing lyrics referencing praise to Jesus
    
    Christ and God at religious sites dominated by crosses and other religious images,
    
    as part of the regular, graded, required Choir activities. Ms. Bauchman further
    
    
                                             -36-
    alleges when she opposed such activity in the context of the Choir's Christmas
    
    concert series, Mr. Torgerson gave her the choice of not participating in the
    
    singing of songs she found offensive and told her that her nonparticipation would
    
    not adversely affect her Choir grade. 11 Relying largely on Lee v. Weisman, 
    505 U.S. 577
     (1992), Ms. Bauchman's counsel nevertheless concludes that such a
    
    choice is "constitutionally infirm", and proclaims that Ms. Bauchman's allegations
    
    therefore establish a Free Exercise violation.
    
    
    
          To state a claim for relief under the Free Exercise Clause, Ms. Bauchman
    
    must allege something more than the fact the song lyrics and performance sites
    
    offended her personal religious beliefs. She must allege facts demonstrating the
    
    challenged action created a burden on the exercise of her religion. United States
    
    v. Lee, 
    455 U.S. 252
    , 256-57 (1982). A plaintiff states a claim her exercise of
    
    religion is burdened if the challenged action is coercive or compulsory in nature.
    
    See Lyng v. Northwest Indian Cemetery Protective Ass'n., 
    485 U.S. 439
    , 448-51
    
    (1988); School Dist. of Abington, 374 U.S. at 222; Messiah Baptist Church v.
    
    Jefferson County, 
    859 F.2d 820
    , 824 (10th Cir. 1988), cert. denied, 
    490 U.S. 1005
    
    
          11
             We take judicial notice of the fact that Ms. Bauchman's opportunity to
    waive participation in the Christmas concerts or any other Choir activity was
    protected by Utah's "Recognizing Constitutional Freedoms in Public School Act,"
    Utah Code Ann. § 53A-13-101.2, and the State Office of Education's regulations
    implementing that Act, Utah Admin. Code R. 277-105-5.
    
                                            -37-
    (1989). Therefore, to state a Free Exercise claim, Ms. Bauchman must allege
    
    facts showing she was "coerced" into singing songs contrary to her religious
    
    beliefs. Messiah Baptist Church, 859 F.2d at 824. This she has failed to do.
    
    
    
          On its face, Ms. Bauchman's complaint states the songs and performances
    
    were a required, graded component of Choir participation, but she was given the
    
    option of not participating to the extent such participation conflicted with her
    
    religious beliefs. Moreover, she was assured her Choir grade would not be
    
    affected by any limited participation. We conclude the fact Ms. Bauchman had a
    
    choice whether or not to sing songs she believed infringed upon her exercise of
    
    religious freedom, with no adverse impact on her academic record, negates the
    
    element of coercion and therefore defeats her Free Exercise claim. See Grove v.
    
    Mead School Dist. No. 354, 
    753 F.2d 1528
    , 1533 (9th Cir.) (court held no Free
    
    Exercise violation where student was given permission to avoid classroom
    
    discussion of book The Learning Tree), cert. denied, 
    373 U.S. 826
     (1985); Florey,
    
    619 F.2d at 1318 (court held no Free Exercise violation where school board
    
    expressly provided students may be excused from activities permitted under rules
    
    outlining the bounds of permissible school activities on religious holidays), cert.
    
    denied, 
    449 U.S. 987
     (1980).
    
    
    
    
                                             -38-
          The district court correctly concluded Lee v. Weisman fails to support Ms.
    
    Bauchman's Free Exercise claim. In Lee, the Supreme Court rejected the notion
    
    that providing a student an option whether to participate in graduation was
    
    sufficient to avoid the Establishment Clause problem with graduation prayer. 505
    
    U.S. at 594-95. The Lee Court did not address state coercion in the Free Exercise
    
    context. For Ms. Bauchman to argue it is impermissible to excuse her from
    
    participation, but rather she must be allowed to participate in a Choir that only
    
    performs songs of the nature she demands, appears to be an attempt to bootstrap
    
    her Free Exercise claim with her Establishment Clause argument. Courts have
    
    long recognized that absent an Establishment Clause violation, the existence of a
    
    conflict between an individual student's or her parents' religious beliefs and a
    
    school activity does not necessarily require the prohibition of a school activity.
    
    Such conflicts are inevitable. Florey, 619 F.2d at 1318. In other words, while the
    
    Free Exercise clause protects, to a degree, an individual's right to practice her
    
    religion within the dictates of her conscience, it does not convene on an
    
    individual the right to dictate a school's curricula to conform to her religion.
    
    
    
          "'[T]he Free Exercise clause is written in terms of what the government
    
    cannot do to the individual, not in terms of what the individual can exact from the
    
    government.'" Lyng v. Northwest Indian Cemetery Protective Ass'n, 485 U.S.
    
    
                                             -39-
    439, 451 (1988) (quoting Sherbert v. Verner, 
    374 U.S. 398
    , 412 (1963) (Douglas,
    
    J. concurring)). Accordingly, "public schools are not required to delete from the
    
    curriculum all materials that may offend any religious sensibility." Florey, 619
    
    F.2d at 1318. Having concluded the State of Utah is not coercing Ms. Bauchman
    
    to violate her religious beliefs, we reject any invitation to obscure the appropriate
    
    scope of her Free Exercise claim by addressing issues of curriculum content. We
    
    leave those issues to our analysis of Ms. Bauchman's Establishment Clause claim,
    
    and uphold the district court's conclusion she failed to state a Free Exercise claim.
    
    
    
                        c.    Freedom of Speech Clause.
    
          Ms. Bauchman relies on the same allegations she asserted in her Free
    
    Exercise claim to support her Free Speech claim. In essence, she argues the
    
    practice and performance of Christian devotional music at religious sites as part
    
    of the regular, graded, Choir curriculum have deprived her of her constitutional
    
    right to refrain from speaking.
    
    
    
          The First Amendment certainly prohibits the government from compelling
    
    speech. See, e.g., Wooley v. Maynard, 
    430 U.S. 705
    , 714 (1977). Here again,
    
    however, a threshold element of Ms. Bauchman's claim is coercion or compulsion.
    
    See id. at 714-15; Mountain States Legal Foundation v. Costle, 
    630 F.2d 754
    ,
    
    
                                             -40-
    769-70 (10th Cir. 1980), cert. denied, 
    450 U.S. 1050
     (1981). For the same
    
    reasons discussed in the context of Ms. Bauchman's Free Exercise claim, we
    
    conclude her complaint fails to allege facts sufficient to show she was coerced or
    
    compelled to engage in any Choir activities (practicing or performing songs she
    
    found offensive in venues she found offensive) against her will. The district
    
    court properly dismissed Ms. Bauchman's Free Speech claim for having failed to
    
    establish a necessary element of the alleged violation.
    
    
    
          B.     DENIAL OF OPPORTUNITY TO AMEND 12
    
          The district court concluded the only material difference between Ms.
    
    Bauchman's proposed amended complaint and her original pleadings was a "new"
    
    allegation or theory that it was not just the singing of Christian songs in religious
    
    venues that violated her constitutional rights, but rather the fact that Mr.
    
    Torgerson selected and performed Christian music at religious venues for the
    
    specific purpose of promoting religion. In light of this new theory, the district
    
    court deferred ruling on Ms. Bauchman's motion to amend until the parties had an
    
    opportunity to complete limited discovery regarding the purpose of Mr.
    
    
    
          12
              We have fully addressed the issues Ms. Bauchman raised in protest of
    the district court's denial of her motion for reconsideration in our affirmance of
    the district court's order dismissing Ms. Bauchman's complaint. The remainder of
    our analysis therefore focuses on Ms. Bauchman's motion to amend her complaint.
    
                                             -41-
    Torgerson's alleged unconstitutional conduct. The district court further limited
    
    discovery to Mr. Torgerson's actions during the year Ms. Bauchman was a Choir
    
    member, unless Ms. Bauchman could establish a "clear and concise nexus"
    
    between Mr. Torgerson's alleged past conduct and the injuries she claims she
    
    incurred in 1994-95.
    
    
    
          After considering the parties' post-discovery evidence and argument
    
    pertaining to the motion to amend, the district court rejected Ms. Bauchman's
    
    efforts to resurrect her Free Exercise, Free Speech, Religious Freedom
    
    Restoration Act, and State constitutional claims, and reaffirmed its original ruling
    
    that "choir singing of religious music does not automatically equate with praying,
    
    and that the selection of Christian songs and the singing of Christian music in
    
    religious venues does not per se constitute a violation of the Establishment
    
    Clause." As to Ms. Bauchman's claim Mr. Torgerson pursued religious rather
    
    than secular purposes, the district court ruled that Ms. Bauchman's allegations and
    
    evidence, when judged by a reasonable observer standard, were insufficient to
    
    sustain an Establishment Clause claim. According to the district court, any
    
    pursuit of Ms. Bauchman's proposed amended complaint would be futile, as the
    
    allegations failed to state an Establishment Cause claim, and the undisputed
    
    materials facts would support a dismissal on summary judgment. The district
    
    
                                            -42-
    court further concluded Ms. Bauchman's motion to amend was untimely, since the
    
    essential facts upon which she based her proposed amendment were known prior
    
    to dismissal of her original complaint.
    
    
    
          Ms. Bauchman challenges these rulings, arguing (1) the proposed amended
    
    complaint adequately states a cause of action and therefore is not futile; (2) the
    
    district court committed plain error by refusing to permit discovery of, or to
    
    consider, evidence of Mr. Torgerson's conduct prior to the 1994-95 school year;
    
    (3) the district court improperly applied a summary judgment standard to her
    
    motion to amend; and, (4) her motion to amend was timely. We consider Ms.
    
    Bauchman’s arguments in turn.
    
    
    
                 1.     Standard of Review.
    
          To safeguard a plaintiff's opportunity to test her claims on the merits, Rule
    
    15(a) of the Federal Rules of Civil Procedure provides that leave of the court to
    
    amend the pleadings should be freely given when justice requires. Fed. R. Civ. P.
    
    15(a). Accordingly, a district court must justify its denial of a motion to amend
    
    with reasons such as futility of amendment or undue delay. See Foman v. Davis,
    
    
    371 U.S. 178
    , 182 (1962); Hom v. Squire, 
    81 F.3d 969
    , 973 (10th Cir. 1996). We
    
    review the district court's decision that Ms. Bauchman's motion to amend her
    
    
                                              -43-
    complaint was both futile and untimely for abuse of discretion. Hom, 81 F.3d at
    
    973.
    
    
    
                 2.    Futility.
    
           As to the allegations supporting Ms. Bauchman's Free Exercise and Free
    
    Speech claims, we agree with the district court there is no material difference
    
    between the two complaints. Consequently, because we hold the district court did
    
    not err in dismissing Ms. Bauchman's Free Exercise and Free Speech claims, we
    
    necessarily conclude the district court did not abuse its discretion by denying Ms.
    
    Bauchman's motion to amend. Further analysis beyond our evaluation of the
    
    district court's order dismissing those claims is unnecessary.
    
    
    
           As to Ms. Bauchman's Establishment Clause claim, we note the following
    
    material differences between the original and amended complaints: (1) the
    
    amended complaint clearly asserts defendants' conduct was motivated by a
    
    religious purpose; (2) the amended complaint contains numerous allegations to
    
    support Ms. Bauchman's claim that Mr. Torgerson has unconstitutionally
    
    promoted his religious beliefs in the classroom for over twenty years; and (3) the
    
    amended complaint meticulously identifies each individual defendant together
    
    with his or her alleged responsibility for Mr. Torgerson's conduct or curriculum
    
    
                                             -44-
    choices. Ms. Bauchman also presented the district court with eight affidavits in
    
    support of her amended complaint. Aside from Ms. Bauchman's affidavit
    
    concerning her Choir experiences during the 1994-95 school year and Ms. Deirdre
    
    Lynch's affidavit concerning the events at West High School's 1995 graduation
    
    exercises, the remaining affidavits describe Mr. Torgerson's alleged conduct as a
    
    music teacher during the two decades prior to the 1994-95 school year. Both
    
    parties relied on deposition transcripts and exhibits collected during the course of
    
    discovery to support their respective arguments regarding the propriety of Ms.
    
    Bauchman's motion to amend. The test is whether the proposed amendments, as
    
    supported by the affidavits or other evidence, cure the deficiencies in the original
    
    complaint. See, e.g., Mountain View Pharmacy v. Abbott Lab., 
    630 F.2d 1383
    ,
    
    1386, 1389 (10th Cir. 1980) (court of appeals gave plaintiffs benefit of any
    
    supporting allegations contained in sworn factual certificate submitted with the
    
    amended complaint when evaluating motion for leave to amend).
    
    
    
          We first consider the allegations and evidence concerning Mr. Torgerson's
    
    conduct prior to the 1994-95 school year. Relying on Justice O'Connor's
    
    concurring opinion in Capitol Square Review & Advisory Bd. v. Pinette, 
    515 U.S. 753
    , 777-79 (1995), Ms. Bauchman asserts Mr. Torgerson's "pattern of conduct"
    
    dating back twenty years is necessary to understand the "pattern, history and
    
    
                                             -45-
    context" of the alleged unconstitutional conduct and thus establish that Mr.
    
    Torgerson was furthering a religious purpose through his direction of Choir
    
    activities in 1994-95. Thus, she argues the district court improperly curtailed
    
    discovery to that period of time Ms. Bauchman was a Choir member. We
    
    disagree.
    
    
    
          Ms. Bauchman's allegations regarding Mr. Torgerson's past conduct are
    
    irrelevant to her Establishment Clause claim for three reasons. First, as
    
    previously discussed, the "actual" purpose component of the endorsement analysis
    
    begins by asking whether there is a lack of a clearly secular purpose, not whether
    
    there is any religious purpose present. See Jaffre, 472 U.S. at 56; Lynch, 465 U.S.
    
    at 680-81. This threshold determination is an objective one, removed from any
    
    subjective intent Mr. Torgerson may have. As previously discussed, Ms.
    
    Bauchman never alleged the defendants lacked a secular purpose.
    
    
    
          Second, while Justice O'Connor noted a reasonable observer evaluating
    
    whether government conduct has the effect of endorsing religion "must be deemed
    
    aware of the history and context of the community and forum" in which the
    
    conduct occurs, she imparted such knowledge to the reasonable observer in the
    
    broad sense of community awareness, not in the sense that a reasonable observer
    
    
                                            -46-
    would have knowledge of every alleged past constitutional violation of a
    
    particular defendant. Capitol Square, 115 S. Ct. at 2454-55 (O'Connor, J.,
    
    concurring). There simply is no indication Justice O'Connor intended her
    
    statements to condone the use of alleged past violations suffered by nonparties to
    
    bootstrap the constitutional claims of a present litigant. Ms. Bauchman has never
    
    claimed to be suing in a representative capacity for past Choir members. Her
    
    standing to sue therefore is limited to claims related to the infringement of her
    
    own constitutional rights while she was a Choir member. Accordingly, the
    
    allegations and evidence relevant to Ms. Bauchman's claims are limited to
    
    defendants' conduct and events during the 1994-95 school year. The district court
    
    did not abuse its discretion by so limiting discovery and its analysis of Ms.
    
    Bauchman's claims.
    
    
    
          Finally, any attempt to use allegations regarding Mr. Torgerson's past
    
    conduct to evidence a continual, controlling unexpressed or psychological motive
    
    to further a religious purpose by selecting religious songs and religious
    
    performance venues oversteps what we believe are pragmatic limits on the nature
    
    of our inquiry into the "actual" purpose of the challenged conduct. Put simply,
    
    our examination must stop short of an attempt to discern a defendant's
    
    psychological motives vis à vis his past conduct, underlying belief system or
    
    
                                             -47-
    religious character. See Westside Community Bd. of Educ. v. Mergens, 
    496 U.S. 226
    , 249 (1990) (plurality) (recognizing distinction between "actual" religious
    
    purpose and possible religious motives); Jaffre, 472 U.S. at 74 (O'Connor, J.,
    
    concurring) (same). We must focus instead on objectively discernible conduct or
    
    communication that is temporally connected to the challenged activity and
    
    manifests a subjective intent by the defendant to favor religion or a particular
    
    religious belief.
    
    
    
          We focus our inquiry on concrete manifestations of intent for a number of
    
    reasons. First, it is likely impossible to discern a sole psychological motive for
    
    Mr. Torgerson's conduct, past or present. See Edwards, 482 U.S. at 636-37
    
    (Scalia, J., dissenting). Additionally, we fear that to impose constitutional
    
    liability on curriculum decisions based on psychological motives inferred from a
    
    teacher's past conduct or religious character would be to (1) impermissibly subject
    
    religious teachers to a unique disability simply by virtue of their devout status,
    
    see Mergens, 496 U.S. at 248 (O'Connor, J., plurality opinion); Edwards, 482
    
    U.S. at 615 (Scalia, J. dissenting) (court does not presume "the sole purpose of a
    
    law is to advance religion merely because it is supported strongly by organized
    
    religions or by adherents of particular faiths"); (2) render legitimate public school
    
    curricula decisions affecting a diverse array of students vulnerable to protracted
    
    
                                             -48-
    litigation initiated by a single, "offended" student, thereby involving the courts in
    
    educational policy decisions best left to the states and locally elected school
    
    boards, Edwards, 482 U.S. at 605 (Powell, J., concurring) (interference with the
    
    decisions of local public school authorities is "warranted only when the purpose
    
    for their decisions is clearly religious"); (3) discourage school districts from
    
    hiring teachers known to have strong religious beliefs; and (4) due to the inherent
    
    difficulty of attempting to discern an individual's unexpressed or psychological
    
    motive, exacerbate what is already perceived to be a morass of inconsistent
    
    Establishment Clause decisions. The Establishment Clause does not require such
    
    results. Instead, an Establishment Clause claim like the one before us must be
    
    supported by allegations of conduct or statements that expressly (without
    
    resorting to psychoanalysis) indicate the defendant believed his selection of songs
    
    and performance venues would serve a religious purpose -- e.g., constitute
    
    religious exercises, cause students to become religious, or cause students to adopt
    
    particular religious beliefs. Ms. Bauchman's allegations concerning Mr.
    
    Torgerson's past conduct provide no such indication of a religious purpose during
    
    the 1994-95 school year.
    
    
    
          Next, we evaluate whether the remaining allegations or evidence change
    
    our earlier analysis that Ms. Bauchman failed to allege an Establishment Clause
    
    
                                             -49-
    violation. Ms. Bauchman's proposed amended complaint and supplemental
    
    materials expand upon and emphasize certain conduct and events related to the
    
    allegations in her original complaint (i.e., the performance of religious music, the
    
    performance at religious sites, and the public ridicule and harassment she
    
    experienced as a result of the defendants' collective response to her objections.)
    
    The specific nature of Ms. Bauchman's augmented allegations and the evidence
    
    pertaining to those allegations are thoroughly addressed in the district court's
    
    Memorandum Decision and Order Denying Leave to Amend. Bauchman v. West
    
    High Sch., 
    1996 WL 407856
     (D. Utah May 30, 1996). We can add little to the
    
    district court's analysis. Having carefully reviewed the entire record before the
    
    district court, we respect Ms. Bauchman's individual perception as to the religious
    
    purpose and effect of these events and Mr. Torgerson's conduct, generally.
    
    Ultimately, however, we conclude that although Ms. Bauchman's allegations may
    
    support an observation that Mr. Torgerson is a religious man who struggles to
    
    expunge his spiritual convictions from his teaching, they fall short of supporting
    
    the required elements of an Establishment Clause claim -- e.g., Mr. Torgerson
    
    actually taught or proselytized his religious beliefs, advocated Christianity in
    
    
    
    
                                             -50-
    general, condemned or criticized others' beliefs, conducted or permitted prayer or
    
    other religious exercises by or with Choir members. 13
    
    
    
          Apparently based on the district court's statement that her proposed
    
    amended complaint "would be subject to dismissal under a motion for summary
    
    judgment," Ms. Bauchman urges us to conclude the district court improperly
    
    applied a summary judgment standard when considering her motion to amend.
    
    The district court's order, read as a whole, makes clear the court did not grant
    
    summary judgment against Ms. Bauchman. Rather, the district court thoroughly
    
    considered Ms. Bauchman's amended complaint together with any support for her
    
    allegations from the affidavits, deposition transcripts and exhibits presented by
    
    both parties, and after such review concluded Ms. Bauchman still failed to state a
    
    claim under the Establishment Clause. As discussed above, we agree with and
    
    uphold that conclusion. The district court went further to conclude the relevant
    
    undisputed facts related to defendants' conduct during the 1994-95 school year
    
    would subject Ms. Bauchman's proposed amended complaint to dismissal on
    
    summary judgment as well. This conclusion in and of itself did not convert the
    
    
    
          13
             It follows that absent sufficient factual allegations to support an
    Establishment Clause claim, the remaining allegations in Ms. Bauchman's
    amended complaint concerning the identity, role and liability of individual
    defendants are of no import.
    
                                            -51-
    district court's analysis into a ruling on summary judgment. It simply provided an
    
    alternative ground for application of the futility doctrine. A court properly may
    
    deny a motion for leave to amend as futile when the proposed amended complaint
    
    would be subject to dismissal for any reason, including that the amendment would
    
    not survive a motion for summary judgment. See, e.g., AM Int'l, Inc. v. Graphic
    
    Management Assocs., Inc., 
    44 F.3d 573
    , 578 (7th Cir. 1995); Wilson v. American
    
    Trans Air, Inc., 
    874 F.2d 386
    , 392 (7th Cir. 1989). Ms. Bauchman's argument to
    
    the contrary is without merit and seems disingenuous, since she herself
    
    participated in discovery and presented supporting materials for the court's
    
    consideration.
    
    
    
          In sum, we agree with the district court that Ms. Bauchman's proffered
    
    amended complaint and supporting evidence and affidavits fail to cure the
    
    deficiencies in her original complaint. As such, the district court did not abuse its
    
    discretion by denying Ms. Bauchman's motion for leave to amend as futile.
    
    
    
                 3.    Timeliness.
    
          The district court cited Ms. Bauchman's failure to amend prior to a ruling
    
    on defendants' motion to dismiss and her failure to allege any "essential" facts not
    
    otherwise known prior to the dismissal of her original complaint as an alternative
    
    
                                             -52-
    ground for denying Ms. Bauchman's motion to amend her complaint. We question
    
    the district court's rationale under circumstances where, as here, the court
    
    deliberately deferred ruling on Ms. Bauchman's motion to amend pending the
    
    completion of additional, limited discovery related to her newly asserted theory
    
    that defendants' conduct was primarily for the purpose of promoting or
    
    proselytizing religion. We need not decide this issue, however, in light of our
    
    concurrence with the district court's decision that Ms. Bauchman's motion to
    
    amend was futile. Further discussion of the timeliness of an amended complaint
    
    proffered after dismissal and subsequent court-authorized discovery is best left
    
    for another day.
    
    
    
    V.    CONCLUSION
    
          We acknowledge, as has the United States Supreme Court, that
    
    jurisprudence in this arena "is of necessity one of line-drawing, of determining at
    
    what point a dissenter's rights of religious freedom are infringed by the State."
    
    Lee v. Weisman, 505 U.S. at 598. The task of distinguishing between real
    
    constitutional threat and "'mere shadow'" is a difficult one, id. (quoting School
    
    Dist. of Abington v. Schempp, 
    374 U.S. 203
    , 308 (1963) (Goldberg, J.,
    
    concurring)), and is perhaps more appropriately undertaken on summary judgment
    
    or after trial. However, for the reasons stated above, we conclude Ms. Bauchman
    
    
                                             -53-
    has failed to demonstrate a real constitutional threat by way of her complaint or
    
    proposed amended complaint. We therefore AFFIRM the district court's
    
    dismissal of Ms. Bauchman's § 1983 claims. We also AFFIRM the district
    
    court's decision denying Ms. Bauchman leave to amend her complaint. We
    
    REMAND Ms. Bauchman's state constitutional claims to the district court, with
    
    instructions to dismiss those claims without prejudice for lack of federal subject
    
    matter jurisdiction. Finally, we DISMISS Ms. Bauchman's claims for injunctive
    
    and declaratory relief as moot.
    
    
    
    
                                            -54-
    95-4084, 96-4101, Bauchman v. West High School, et al.
    
    Murphy, Circuit Judge, concurring in part and dissenting in part.
    
    
    
                                  I. INTRODUCTION
    
          The court today holds that detailed allegations of deliberate, intentional,
    
    and purposeful endorsement of religion by a public high school teacher are
    
    insufficient to state an Establishment Clause civil rights claim. Majority Op. at
    
    44-50. Because the majority’s ruling, reasoning, and the necessary consequences
    
    thereof are inconsistent with the Establishment Clause as interpreted by the
    
    Supreme Court, I respectfully dissent.
    
          The majority appears to reach its conclusion by finding a distinction
    
    between Richard Torgerson’s 1 “motive” and “purpose.” In light of this
    
    distinction, never before applied by this court or the Supreme Court in the context
    
    of an Establishment Clause civil rights claim, the majority holds that Torgerson’s
    
    “psychological motive” in selecting the Choir’s repertoire and performance
    
    venues is constitutionally irrelevant in determining whether he acted with the
    
    
          1
            Because the liability of each defendant in this case is in some sense
    derivative from Torgerson’s liability, the majority opinion focuses exclusively on
    the alleged conduct of Torgerson in analyzing whether Bauchman’s original or
    proposed amended complaint states a claim upon which relief can be granted.
    This separate opinion does likewise. This is not to say, however, that the
    governmental defendant, Salt Lake City School District, is in any way responsible
    for Torgerson’s or the other individual defendants’ alleged unconstitutional acts
    under the doctrine of respondeat superior. See Monell v. Department of Soc.
    Servs., 
    436 U.S. 658
    , 690-91 (1978).
    “actual purpose” of advancing religion. Id. at 47-50. Finally, taking its new
    
    constitutional rule of relevance to an extreme, the majority holds that Torgerson’s
    
    alleged past acts of religious endorsement are also irrelevant because past acts
    
    demonstrate only “psychological motive,” not “actual purpose.” Id.
    
          As detailed below, the majority’s rigid view of pleading and proof of an
    
    Establishment Clause civil rights claim is inconsistent with Supreme Court
    
    precedent. In sharp contrast to the constitutional distinction drawn by the
    
    majority, the Supreme Court has routinely used the terms “motive” and “purpose”
    
    interchangeably in this context. Furthermore, the cases cited by the majority for
    
    the conclusion that motive is never relevant under the endorsement test’s purpose
    
    prong are inapplicable and the policy concerns identified by the majority in
    
    support of its new rule of relevance are far from compelling. Finally, the
    
    majority’s unexplained conclusion that past acts of misconduct are always
    
    irrelevant is inconsistent with the Federal Rules of Evidence and with precedent
    
    in an analogous area of the law.
    
          The majority has so radically restricted pleading and proof of an improper
    
    purpose as to nullify the endorsement test’s purpose prong. Beyond eviscerating
    
    the Establishment Clause as a protective citadel against religious and antireligious
    
    conduct by teachers and other public employees, the majority’s approach defies a
    
    fundamental constitutional precept: “If there is any fixed star in our constitutional
    
    
                                             -2-
    constellation, it is that no official, high or petty, can prescribe what shall be
    
    orthodox in politics, nationalism, religion, or other matters of opinion or force
    
    citizens to confess by word or act their faith therein.” West Va. State Bd. of Educ.
    
    v. Barnette, 
    319 U.S. 624
    , 642 (1943). Unfortunately, that “fixed star” shines less
    
    brightly today.
    
    
    
                II. THE ENDORSEMENT TEST’S PURPOSE PRONG
    
          The Establishment Clause of the First Amendment provides that the federal
    
    government “shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion.” U.S.
    
    Const. amend. I. This prohibition extends to state governments and their political
    
    subdivisions by operation of the Fourteenth Amendment. See Wallace v. Jaffree,
    
    
    472 U.S. 38
    , 48-49 (1985); Engel v. Vitale, 
    370 U.S. 421
    , 430 (1962). To
    
    determine whether Bauchman’s original or proposed amended complaint states a
    
    claim upon which relief can be granted, this court must evaluate whether
    
    Torgerson’s alleged conduct violates the Establishment Clause under the criteria
    
    set forth by the Supreme Court in Lemon v. Kurtzman, 
    403 U.S. 602
    , 612-13
    
    (1971), and its progeny.
    
          In Lemon, the seminal Establishment Clause case, the Supreme Court set
    
    forth a three-part test for evaluating the constitutionality of government action.
    
    Under that test, a government action will not violate the Establishment Clause as
    
    
                                               -3-
    long as (1) it has a secular purpose, (2) does not have a principal or primary effect
    
    that either advances or inhibits religion, and (3) does not foster an excessive
    
    government entanglement with religion. See id.
    
          Although the Supreme Court continued to apply the three-part Lemon test to
    
    Establishment Clause claims throughout the 1970s, Lemon came under increasing
    
    attack in the early 1980s. See Majority Op. at 20-21 (collecting cases attacking
    
    Lemon). In 1984, Justice O’Connor utilized the opportunity presented in Lynch v.
    
    Donnelly, 
    465 U.S. 668
     (1984), to suggest a “clarification” of the Supreme
    
    Court’s Establishment Clause jurisprudence. That “clarification” has come to be
    
    known as the endorsement test.
    
          In Lynch, a divided Supreme Court held that the city of Pawtucket’s
    
    inclusion of a crèche, along with a wide array of secular Christmas decorations, in
    
    a downtown Christmas display did not violate the Establishment Clause. See id.
    
    at 685, 687 (plurality opinion); id. at 694 (O’Connor, J., concurring). In a
    
    concurring opinion, Justice O’Connor identified the bedrock principles underlying
    
    the Establishment Clause and opined that there was not a clear nexus between
    
    those principles and the criteria set out in Lemon. According to Justice
    
    O’Connor:
    
                The Establishment Clause prohibits government from making
          adherence to a religion relevant in any way to a person’s standing in
          the political community. Government can run afoul of that
          prohibition in two principal ways. One is excessive entanglement
    
                                              -4-
          with religious institutions . . . . The second and more direct
          infringement is government endorsement or disapproval of
          religion. . . .
    
                 Our prior cases have used the three-part test articulated in
          Lemon v. Kurtzman, 
    403 U.S. 602
    , 612-13 (1971), as a guide to
          detecting these two forms of unconstitutional government action. It
          has never been entirely clear, however, how the three parts of the test
          relate to the principles enshrined in the Establishment Clause.
          Focusing on institutional entanglement and on endorsement or
          disapproval of religion clarifies the Lemon test as an analytical
          device.
    
    Id. at 687-89 (O’Connor, J., concurring) (citations and footnote omitted).
    
          As to the endorsement component of her clarified Establishment Clause
    
    analysis, Justice O’Connor noted:
    
                The central issue in this case is whether Pawtucket has
          endorsed Christianity by its display of the crèche. To answer that
          question, we must examine both what Pawtucket intended to
          communicate in displaying the crèche and what message the city’s
          display actually conveyed. The purpose and effect prongs of the
          Lemon test represent these two aspects of the meaning of the city’s
          action.
    
                 The meaning of a statement to its audience depends both on
          the intention of the speaker and on the “objective” meaning of the
          statement in the community. Some listeners need not rely solely on
          the words themselves in discerning the speaker’s intent: they can
          judge the intent by, for example, examining the context of the
          statement or asking questions of the speaker. Other listeners do not
          have or will not seek access to such evidence of intent. They will
          rely instead on the words themselves; for them the message actually
          conveyed may be something not actually intended. If the audience is
          large, as it always is when government “speaks” by word or deed,
          some portion of the audience will inevitably receive a message
          determined by the “objective” content of the statement, and some
          portion will inevitably receive the intended message. Examination of
    
                                             -5-
          both the subjective and the objective components of the message
          communicated by a government action is therefore necessary to
          determine whether the action carries a forbidden meaning.
    
                The purpose prong of the Lemon test asks whether
          government’s actual purpose is to endorse or disapprove of religion.
          The effect prong asks whether, irrespective of government’s actual
          purpose, the practice under review in fact conveys a message of
          endorsement or disapproval. An affirmative answer to either
          question should render the challenged practice invalid.
    
    Id. at 690 (O’Connor, J., concurring) (emphasis added).
    
          In focusing specifically on the purpose prong of her endorsement test,
    
    Justice O’Connor noted that “[t]he purpose prong of the Lemon test requires that a
    
    government activity have a secular purpose.” Id. (O’Connor, J., concurring).
    
    According to Justice O’Connor, however, “[t]hat requirement is not satisfied . . .
    
    by the mere existence of some secular purpose, however dominated by religious
    
    purposes.” Id. at 690-91 (O’Connor, J., concurring) (emphasis added). Thus,
    
    under the endorsement test formulated by Justice O’Connor, “[t]he proper inquiry
    
    under the purpose prong of Lemon . . . is whether the government intends to
    
    convey a message of endorsement or disapproval of religion.” Id. at 691
    
    (O’Connor, J., concurring).
    
          The above-quoted passages establish that Justice O’Connor, the originator
    
    of the endorsement test, believes the proper focus of the purpose prong is the
    
    subjective purpose of the governmental actor. The question then becomes
    
    whether a majority of the Court has embraced the endorsement test and, if so,
    
                                             -6-
    whether a majority has embraced Justice O’Connor’s views of the purpose prong.
    
    Unfortunately, the task of parsing the Supreme Court’s recent Establishment
    
    Clause cases is nothing short of Herculean. A careful reading of the Court’s post-
    
    Lynch opinions, however, leads to the conclusion that a majority of the Court has
    
    adopted Justice O’Connor’s emphasis on endorsement. See County of Allegheny
    
    v. ACLU, 
    492 U.S. 573
    , 592 (1989) (holding for majority of court that “[i]n recent
    
    years, we have paid particularly close attention to whether the challenged
    
    governmental practice either has the purpose or effect of ‘endorsing’ religion”).
    
    Although the Supreme Court’s discussion of the issue is perhaps opaque, recent
    
    cases support the conclusion that a majority of the Court would invalidate any
    
    governmental action subjectively intended to endorse religion.
    
          In Wallace v. Jaffree, 
    472 U.S. 38
    , 56-61 (1985), the Supreme Court struck
    
    down under Lemon’s purpose prong an Alabama statute authorizing a one-minute
    
    moment of silence in all public schools “for meditation or voluntary prayer.”
    
    Citing to Justice O’Connor’s concurring opinion and Justice Brennan’s dissenting
    
    opinion in Lynch, the Court in Wallace noted that “even though a statute that is
    
    motivated in part by a religious purpose may satisfy [Lemon’s] first criterion, the
    
    First Amendment requires that a statute must be invalidated if it is entirely
    
    motivated by a purpose to advance religion.” Id. at 56 (citation omitted).
    
    According to Wallace, “In applying the purpose test, it is appropriate to ask
    
    
                                             -7-
    ‘whether government’s actual purpose is to endorse or disapprove of religion.’”
    
    Id. (quoting Lynch, 465 U.S. at 690 (O’Connor, J., concurring)). In concluding
    
    that the statute at issue was actually motivated by a religious purpose, the Court
    
    examined the legislative history of the statute, focusing particularly on statements
    
    of the Act’s sponsor that the motivation behind the Act was to return prayer to
    
    public schools. See id. at 56-57, 57 n.43.
    
          It is clear that the Court focused on the Alabama legislature’s subjective
    
    legislative purpose, rather than some possible objectively identifiable secular
    
    purpose for enacting the statute at issue. That focus on subjective legislative
    
    purpose is mirrored and amplified in the concurring opinions of Justices Powell
    
    and O’Connor. In his concurring opinion, Justice Powell stated the test as
    
    follows: “The first inquiry under Lemon is whether the challenged statute has a
    
    ‘secular legislative purpose.’ As Justice O’Connor recognizes, this secular
    
    purpose must be ‘sincere’; a law will not pass constitutional muster if the secular
    
    purpose articulated by the legislature is merely a ‘sham.’” Id. at 64 (Powell, J.,
    
    concurring) (citations omitted).
    
          Employing the analysis she developed in Lynch, Justice O’Connor also
    
    found the Act at issue unconstitutional. As was the case with Justice Powell, it is
    
    clear that Justice O’Connor’s opinion is based on an analysis of the legislature’s
    
    subjective intent in passing the Act. See id. at 75-79 (O’Connor, J., concurring in
    
    
                                              -8-
    judgment); cf. Edwards v. Aguillard, 
    482 U.S. 578
    , 585, 590-92 (1987) (striking
    
    down Louisiana Creationism Act because legislature’s “preeminent,”
    
    “predominant,” “primary,” and “actual” purpose in passing the legislation was to
    
    advance religion); id. at 610 (Scalia, J., dissenting) (“Even if I agreed with the
    
    questionable premise that legislation can be invalidated under the Establishment
    
    Clause on the basis of its motivation alone, without regard to its effects, I would
    
    still find no justification for today’s decision.”).
    
          The decisions in Wallace and Edwards illustrate that in recent years the
    
    Supreme Court has focused on the subjective intent of the governmental actor in
    
    analyzing whether governmental action fails for an improper purpose. 2 Cf. Board
    
    
          2
            According to Justice O’Connor, the Supreme Court’s focus on “actual”
    subjective intent is the reason that so few cases are decided under Lemon’s
    purpose prong. Evidence of a subjective intent to advance religion is often
    difficult to develop. Nevertheless, Justice O’Connor, the developer of the
    endorsement test, seems undeterred by this fact. According to Justice O’Connor:
           It is not a trivial matter . . . to require that the legislature manifest a
           secular purpose and omit all sectarian endorsements from its laws.
           That requirement is precisely tailored to the Establishment Clause’s
           purpose of assuring that government not intentionally endorse
           religion or a religious practice. It is of course possible that a
           legislature will enunciate a sham secular purpose for a statute. I
           have little doubt that our courts are capable of distinguishing a sham
           secular purpose from a sincere one, or that the Lemon inquiry into the
           effect of an enactment would help decide those close cases where the
           validity of an expressed secular purpose is in doubt. While the
           secular purpose requirement alone may rarely be determinative in
           striking down a statute, it nevertheless serves an important function.
           It reminds government that when it acts it should do so without
           endorsing a particular religious belief or practice that all citizens do
    
                                               -9-
    of Educ. v. Grumet, 
    512 U.S. 687
    , 737 (1994) (Scalia, J., dissenting) (noting that
    
    Court’s decision to strike down specially created school district was based, in
    
    part, on its conclusion that creation of district was “religiously motivated”).
    
    Thus, it is equally clear that this court must focus on subjective purpose in
    
    deciding whether Bauchman’s original or proposed amended complaint states a
    
    viable Establishment Clause civil rights claim.
    
    
    
                            III. THE MAJORITY OPINION
    
          The majority begins its analysis of Lemon in a seemingly unexceptional
    
    manner. It correctly notes that this court must apply the Lemon criteria as
    
    clarified by recent Supreme Court cases which focus on whether the challenged
    
    governmental action “endorses” religion. See Majority Op. at 19-25. As to the
    
    endorsement test, the majority notes the effect prong “should evaluate whether a
    
    ‘reasonable observer,’ aware of the history and context of the community in
    
    which the conduct occurs, would view the practice as communicating a message
    
    of government endorsement or disapproval.” Id. at 22. The majority also
    
    grudgingly recites that the purpose prong encompasses a subjective analysis
    
    which “should evaluate whether the government’s ‘actual’ purpose is to endorse
    
    
    
         not share.
    Wallace v. Jaffree, 
    472 U.S. 38
    , 75-76 (1985) (O’Connor, J., concurring in
    judgment).
    
                                             -10-
    or disapprove of religion.” Id. at 22, 24 (concluding that purpose prong contains a
    
    subjective test of “actual purpose” but opining that the purpose prong is an
    
    “unworkable standard” that “yields unprincipled results”). Finally, after again
    
    expressing its displeasure, the majority correctly concludes that a violation of
    
    either the subjective purpose prong or the objective effect prong is sufficient to
    
    invalidate the challenged practice under the First Amendment. See id at 24-25.
    
          Thus, the majority’s initial articulation of the endorsement test’s purpose
    
    prong appears no different than the articulation in this separate opinion. Compare
    
    id. at 19-25 with supra Section II of this separate opinion. The majority departs,
    
    however, when it applies the endorsement test’s purpose prong to Bauchman’s
    
    proposed amended complaint. In concluding that the proposed amended
    
    complaint fails to state an Establishment Clause civil rights claim, the majority
    
    holds as follows:
    
          [A]ny attempt to use allegations regarding Mr. Torgerson’s past
          conduct to evidence a continual, controlling unexpressed or
          psychological motive to further a religious purpose by selecting
          religious songs and religious performance venues oversteps what we
          believe are pragmatic limits on the nature of our inquiry into the
          “actual” purpose of the challenged conduct. Put simply, our
          examination must stop short of an attempt to discern a defendant’s
          psychological motives vis à vis his past conduct, underlying belief
          system or religious character. We must focus instead on objectively
          discernible conduct or communication that is temporally connected
          to the challenged activity and manifests a subjective intent by the
          defendant to favor religion or a particular religious belief.
    
    
    
                                             -11-
    Majority Op. at 47-48 (citations omitted) (third emphasis added). The majority
    
    thereafter repeatedly declares that Torgerson’s motivation in undertaking the acts
    
    at issue here is irrelevant and, furthermore, that his alleged past acts of
    
    endorsement are only demonstrative of motive and, therefore, are also irrelevant.
    
    See id. at 46-50. Finally, the majority concludes that an Establishment Clause
    
    civil rights claim will always fail at the pleading stage unless it is supported by
    
    allegations of “conduct or statements” which are “temporally connected to the
    
    challenged activity” and “expressly (without resorting to psychoanalysis) indicate
    
    the defendant believed his” actions would serve a religious purpose. See id.
    
          The limitations imposed by the majority on the pleading and proof of an
    
    improper purpose under the Establishment Clause are unprecedented. The
    
    distinction drawn by the majority between motive and purpose finds no support in
    
    Supreme Court precedent. Furthermore, the majority’s rigid views of allegations
    
    supportive of an improper purpose claim is at odds with the well-established rule
    
    that evidence of prior acts is relevant and admissible for the purpose of
    
    demonstrating “motive, opportunity, intent, preparation, plan, [and] knowledge.”
    
    Fed. R. Evid. 404(b).
    
    
    
    
                                              -12-
          A. Supreme Court Precedent
    
          The primary problem with the distinction drawn by the majority, and its
    
    concomitant rule of relevance, is that it finds no support in the Supreme Court’s
    
    Establishment Clause jurisprudence. 3 In fact, the Supreme Court has routinely
    
    used the terms “motive” and “purpose” interchangeably in discussing and
    
    applying the endorsement test’s purpose prong. See, e.g., Wallace, 472 U.S. at 56
    
    (“For even though a statute that is motivated in part by a religious purpose may
    
    satisfy the first criterion, the First Amendment requires that a statute must be
    
    invalidated if it is entirely motivated by a purpose to advance religion.”
    
    (citation omitted) (emphasis added)); id. at 59-60 (“We must, therefore, conclude
    
    that the Alabama Legislature . . . was motivated by the same purpose that the
    
    Governor’s answer the second amended complaint expressly admitted . . . .”
    
    (emphasis added)); id. at 64 n.6 (Powell, J., concurring) (agreeing with majority
    
    that “‘a statute must be invalidated if it is entirely motivated by a purpose to
    
    advance religion’”); id. at 86-87 (Burger, C.J., dissenting) (dissenting from
    
    
    
          3
           It is clear that the law generally draws a distinction between an actor’s
    motive and his intent or purpose. See Black’s Law Dictionary 1014 (6th ed.
    1990) (setting out differences between motive and intent). The question,
    however, is whether the Supreme Court has recognized that distinction in the
    context of the endorsement test’s purpose prong and, more importantly, whether
    the Supreme Court has adopted a constitutional rule of relevance which makes
    evidence of motive invariably inadmissible to prove purpose. As detailed more
    fully below, the answer to both questions is no.
    
                                             -13-
    majority conclusion that Alabama moment of silence statute was motivated by an
    
    improper purpose on ground that there was “not a shred of evidence that the
    
    legislature as a whole shared the sponsor’s motive” (emphasis added)); Edwards,
    
    482 U.S. at 613 (Scalia, J., dissenting) (“It is clear, first of all, that regardless of
    
    what “legislative purpose” may mean in other contexts, for the purpose of the
    
    Lemon test it means the “actual” motives of those responsible for the challenged
    
    action.” (emphasis added)); id. at 614 (Scalia, J., dissenting) (“In all three cases
    
    in which we struck down laws under the Establishment Clause for lack of a
    
    secular purpose, we found that the legislature’s sole motive was to promote
    
    religion.” (emphasis added)); id. at 619 (Scalia, J., dissenting) (dissenting from
    
    majority’s conclusion of improper purpose because court had “relatively little
    
    information upon which to judge the motives of those who supported the Act”
    
    (emphasis added)); Bowen v. Kendrick, 
    487 U.S. 589
    , 602-03 (1988) (repeatedly
    
    using the terms “motive” and “purpose” interchangeably in discussing whether act
    
    violated Establishment Clause); Texas Monthly, Inc. v. Bullock, 
    489 U.S. 1
    , 14 n.4
    
    (1989) (using terms interchangeably in concluding exemption violated
    
    Establishment Clause); Grumet, 512 U.S. at 737 (Scalia, J., dissenting) (noting
    
    that Court’s decision to strike down specially created school district was based, in
    
    part, on its conclusion that creation of district was “religiously motivated”
    
    (emphasis added)). As this lengthy list of citations and quotations demonstrates,
    
    
                                               -14-
    the Supreme Court has never drawn the sharp distinction between motive and
    
    purpose advocated in the majority opinion and has certainly never stated that a
    
    governmental actor’s motives are immutably irrelevant to determining whether he
    
    acted with the purpose of approving or disapproving religion.
    
          To the extent that the majority opinion relies on the Supreme Court’s
    
    decision in Board of Education v. Mergens, 
    496 U.S. 226
    , 249 (1990) (plurality
    
    opinion) to support its conclusion that Torgerson’s motive is constitutionally
    
    irrelevant, the majority misreads the opinion. See Majority Op. at 48.
    
           In Mergens, the Supreme Court upheld the Equal Access Act, 20 U.S.C.
    
    §§ 4071-4074, against, inter alia, an Establishment Clause challenge. See 496
    
    U.S. at 247-53 (plurality opinion); id. at 260-62 (Kennedy, J., concurring in part
    
    and concurring in the judgment); id. at 262-70 (Marshall, J., concurring in the
    
    judgment). During the process of applying the purpose prong to the Equal Access
    
    Act, a plurality of the Court noted as follows: “Even if some legislators were
    
    motivated by a conviction that religious speech in particular was valuable and
    
    worthy of protection, that alone would not invalidate the Act, because what is
    
    relevant is the legislative purpose of the statute, not the possibly religious motives
    
    of the legislators who enacted the law.” Id. at 249 (plurality opinion). Contrary
    
    to the majority’s implicit assertion to the contrary, Mergens does not stand for the
    
    proposition that the personal motives of the sole state actor in this case,
    
    
                                             -15-
    Torgerson, are invariably irrelevant under the endorsement test’s subjectively
    
    oriented purpose prong.
    
          There is a simple, clear, and threshold distinction rendering Mergens
    
    inapplicable to cases such as this one: Mergens did not involve a § 1983 civil
    
    rights claim against an individual state actor. Mergens instead involved the
    
    constitutionality of a legislative enactment. See id. at 247-53 (plurality opinion).
    
    The majority’s reliance on Mergens in addressing the wholly distinguishable
    
    setting in which Bauchman challenges the acts of a single state actor, who was
    
    solely or principally responsible for the challenged conduct, is misplaced.
    
          The plurality in Mergens noted that any inquiry into the purpose of a
    
    legislative enactment should be deferential and limited. See id. at 248-49
    
    (plurality opinion). Such deference is predicated on the Supreme Court’s respect
    
    for the role of Congress as a coequal branch of the federal government. See id. at
    
    251 (plurality opinion). Nothing in this case indicates that the Court is likely to
    
    apply a similarly deferential standard to the actions of an individual state actor in
    
    an Establishment Clause civil rights suit under § 1983. In contrast to its
    
    deference to the collective actions of legislatures, the Supreme Court has
    
    specifically noted the unique power which public school teachers may wield over
    
    students. See Edwards, 482 U.S. at 583-84. More importantly, the Supreme
    
    Court refused to analyze the motives of individual legislators in Mergens because
    
    
                                             -16-
    the individual views of a single legislator say little about the legislative body’s
    
    collective purpose in enacting a statute. See Mergens, 496 U.S. at 249 (plurality
    
    opinion). Because it is the collective purpose of the legislative body that is at
    
    issue when a statute is challenged under the Establishment Clause, a particular
    
    legislator’s impermissible motives for introducing or voting for a statute are
    
    irrelevant. The motive, intent, and purpose of a state actor solely or principally
    
    responsible for conduct challenged under § 1983, however, is paramount.
    
          B. Constitutional Policy
    
          In addition to its reliance on Mergens, the majority asserts that
    
    constitutional policy compels indifference to Torgerson’s individual motivation.
    
    According to the majority, “to impose constitutional liability on curriculum
    
    decisions based on psychological motives inferred from a teacher’s past conduct”
    
    would (1) “impermissibly subject religious teachers to a unique disability simply
    
    by virtue of their devout status”; (2) render legitimate curriculum decisions
    
    vulnerable to litigation and involve “the courts in educational policy decisions
    
    best left to the states and locally elected school boards”; (3) discourage school
    
    districts from hiring teachers known to have strong religious beliefs; and (4)
    
    “exacerbate what is already perceived to be a morass of inconsistent
    
    Establishment Clause decisions.” Majority Op. at 48-49. Unfortunately, the
    
    majority merely recites this litany and does not further elaborate.
    
    
                                              -17-
          The majority’s concern that religiously devout teachers will be disabled if
    
    their motives are deemed probative, the first and third policy arguments in the
    
    majority’s litany, confuses the concepts of belief and purpose. Torgerson’s
    
    religious beliefs are irrelevant to the determination of his purpose. See Mergens,
    
    496 U.S. at 248 (plurality opinion). Allegations that Torgerson included religious
    
    songs in the Choir’s repertoire, that he chose religious sites for performances, or
    
    that he is a devoutly religious man are insufficient to state a civil rights claim
    
    under the endorsement test’s purpose prong. See Edwards, 482 U.S. at 605
    
    (Powell, J., concurring); see also infra (concluding that Bauchman’s original
    
    complaint fails to state a civil rights claim under the Establishment Clause). But
    
    merely because a religious person is not constitutionally presumed to have a
    
    religious purpose does not immunize that person from civil rights liability for
    
    intentional endorsement or disapproval of religion. 4
    
    
    
    
          4
            To the extent that the majority’s public policy concerns focus on the
    dangers of considering a governmental actor’s deeply held religious beliefs, as
    opposed to specific instances of past religious endorsement or disapproval, the
    concerns identified by the majority are not triggered in this case. Bauchman
    never argued on appeal that allegations regarding Torgerson’s religious beliefs,
    either standing alone or in combination with his alleged past acts of misconduct,
    were sufficient to state a civil rights claim under the Establishment Clause.
    Instead, she has simply argued the unremarkable position that Torgerson’s alleged
    past acts of misconduct, set out more fully below, are relevant to the question of
    whether he chose the Choir’s repertoire and performance venues for the purpose
    of advancing religion.
    
                                              -18-
          The second policy in the majority’s litany, the importance of local control
    
    over education, is equally unavailing. This court has not been asked to overturn a
    
    religiously neutral state or local school board policy, but has simply been asked
    
    whether the following allegation states a claim upon which relief can be granted:
    
    an individual teacher undertook certain actions in a secondary education
    
    classroom for the direct and specific purpose of advancing religion. Answering
    
    that question in the affirmative would not necessarily subject local school boards
    
    to any special danger. Instead, it would provide content to the Establishment
    
    Clause by prohibiting public school teachers from purposefully using their
    
    positions in the classroom to endorse or disapprove religion. Furthermore,
    
    although states and local school boards are “generally afforded considerable
    
    discretion in operating public schools,” 5 the Supreme Court has recognized “that
    
    the discretion of the States and local school boards in matters of education must
    
    be exercised in a manner that comports with the transcendent imperatives of the
    
    First Amendment.” Board of Educ. v. Pico, 
    457 U.S. 853
    , 864 (1982). Moreover,
    
    the Court has repeatedly expressed the necessity of “monitoring compliance with
    
    the Establishment Clause in elementary and secondary schools.” Edwards, 482
    
    U.S. at 583-84. Its reasoning is unassailable:
    
    
    
    
          5
              Edwards, 482 U.S. at 583.
    
                                            -19-
          Families entrust public schools with the education of their children,
          but condition their trust on the understanding that the classroom will
          not purposely be used to advance religious views that may conflict
          with the private beliefs of the student and his or her family. Students
          in such institutions are impressionable and their attendance is
          involuntary. The State exerts great authority and coercive power
          through mandatory attendance requirements, and because of the
          students’ emulation of teachers as role models and the children’s
          susceptibility to peer pressure. Furthermore, “[t]he public school is
          at once the symbol of our democracy and the most pervasive means
          for promoting our common destiny. In no activity of the State is it
          more vital to keep out divisive forces than in its schools . . . .”
    
    Id. at 584 (quoting Illinois ex rel. McCollum v. Board of Educ., 
    333 U.S. 203
    , 231
    
    (1948) (Opinion of Frankfurter, J.)) (citations omitted) (alteration and ellipses in
    
    original).
    
          Finally, the majority concludes its litany with the wholly unsupported
    
    suggestion that to attribute any significance to a public school teacher’s motives
    
    will “exacerbate what is already perceived to be a morass of inconsistent
    
    Establishment Clause decisions.” Majority Op. at 49. Conceding for the sake of
    
    argument the characterization of the Supreme Court’s Establishment Clause
    
    jurisprudence as being in “hopeless disarray” and in need of “[s]ubstantial
    
    revision,” id. at 20, attributing constitutional significance to the motives of a
    
    public school teacher, who is principally, if not solely, responsible for the
    
    challenged conduct neither contributes to the disarray nor creates the need for
    
    revision. Consideration of the motivation of a teacher who is alleged to have
    
    
    
                                              -20-
    deliberately, intentionally, and purposefully endorsed or disapproved of religion
    
    will not further complicate Establishment Clause jurisprudence.
    
          C. Relevance of Prior Acts
    
          It must be further noted the majority’s conclusion that Torgerson’s alleged
    
    past acts are irrelevant is suspect for the following three reasons: (1) the majority
    
    offers no reasoning at all for its conclusion that Torgerson’s past acts of
    
    misconduct only demonstrate a “continual, controlling . . . motive to further a
    
    religious purpose,” Majority Op. at 47, as opposed to a continual, controlling
    
    purpose to endorse religion; (2) the conclusion of irrelevance is at odds with
    
    Federal Rule of Evidence 404(b), which specifically provides that evidence of
    
    past conduct is admissible for the purpose of proving motive, intent, and
    
    knowledge; and (3) the conclusion of irrelevance is inconsistent with analogous
    
    case law under Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964, 42 U.S.C. §§ 2000e-17.
    
          At the very heart of the majority’s decision in this case is the conclusion
    
    that Torgerson’s past conduct of endorsement is irrelevant because it only serves
    
    to demonstrate a continuing psychological “motive” to “further a religious
    
    purpose,” rather than a distinct purpose to endorse religion. 6 Majority Op. at 47;
    
    
    
          6
           It is worth noting, albeit repetitiously, that the Supreme Court, using
    language identical to that rejected by the majority, has held “the First Amendment
    requires that a statute must be invalidated if it is entirely motivated by a purpose
    to advance religion.” Wallace, 472 U.S. at 56 (emphasis added).
    
                                             -21-
    see also id. (“[A]llegations and evidence relevant to Ms. Bauchman’s claims are
    
    limited to defendants’ conduct and events during the 1994-95 school year.”). The
    
    problem is that the majority never explains why past instances of misconduct only
    
    show a continuing motive rather than a continuing purpose to advance religion.
    
    Under the majority’s rigid rule of relevance, a past expression of “actual purpose”
    
    is apparently converted into an irrelevant expression of motive by the mere
    
    passage of time. Under this novel view of relevance, an admission by a public
    
    school teacher that she constructed the curriculum for the direct purpose of
    
    advancing religion is somehow converted into a mere expression of motive during
    
    a subsequent year, even if the curriculum in question remains unchanged.
    
    Unfortunately, the majority has not cited any support for this novel proposition.
    
    A review of the relevant Supreme Court jurisprudence reveals the reason: no
    
    support for the proposition exists. Even assuming for the sake of argument that
    
    the majority’s novel rule of past conduct is correct and allegations of Torgerson’s
    
    past conduct of endorsement are somehow converted into mere expressions of
    
    motive, that motive is still relevant to prove that Torgerson acted with an
    
    improper purpose during the year in question.
    
          The majority’s conclusion that allegations concerning Torgerson’s past acts
    
    of endorsement are irrelevant is also inconsistent with the Federal Rules of
    
    Evidence. The Federal Rules of Evidence provide as follows: “Evidence of other
    
    
                                            -22-
    crimes, wrongs, or acts is not admissible to prove the character of a person in
    
    order to show action in conformity therewith. It may, however, be admissible for
    
    other purposes, such as proof of motive, opportunity, intent, preparation, plan,
    
    knowledge, identity, or absence of mistake or accident . . . .” Fed. R. Evid.
    
    404(b). According to at least one noted commentator, “Rule 404(b) adopts an
    
    inclusionary approach, generally providing for the admission of all evidence of
    
    other acts that is relevant to an issue in trial, excepting only evidence offered to
    
    prove criminal propensity.” Weinstein’s Federal Evidence § 404.20[3] (Joseph
    
    M. McLaughlin ed., 2d ed. 1997). Furthermore, prior acts or wrongs are most
    
    frequently admitted in both civil and criminal trials to “show a pattern of
    
    operation that would suggest intent.” Id. § 404.22[1][a]; see also Turley v. State
    
    Farm Mut. Auto. Ins. Co., 
    944 F.2d 669
    , 674-75 (10th Cir. 1991). As detailed
    
    below, a pattern of conduct that would suggest intent is exactly what Bauchman
    
    alleged in her amended complaint. The majority’s conclusion that Torgerson’s
    
    alleged past acts are irrelevant is clearly at odds with the “inclusionary approach”
    
    to such evidence set forth in the Federal Rules.
    
          Finally, the majority’s exclusion of Torgerson’s alleged prior acts of
    
    misconduct is also inconsistent with this circuit’s treatment of past misconduct in
    
    Title VII discrimination cases. Title VII cases are particularly instructive on the
    
    admissibility of past acts of misconduct. In both the Title VII arena and under the
    
    
                                              -23-
    endorsement test’s purpose prong an otherwise perfectly lawful act becomes
    
    unlawful if it is undertaken with an interdicted state of mind.
    
          This circuit has long held that evidence of prior or concurrent acts of
    
    discrimination against others is relevant and admissible to prove an otherwise
    
    unrelated claim of discrimination. See Lowe v. Angelo’s Italian Foods, Inc., 
    87 F.3d 1170
    , 1175 (10th Cir. 1996); Honce v. Vigil, 
    1 F.3d 1085
    , 1090 (10th Cir.
    
    1993); Pitre v. Western Elec. Co., 
    843 F.2d 1262
    , 1266-67 (10th Cir. 1988). As
    
    this court explained in Pitre, prior acts of discrimination are “‘quite probative’”
    
    of the question whether current conduct is discriminatory. 843 F.2d at 1267
    
    (quoting Bazemore v. Friday, 
    478 U.S. 385
    , 402 n.13 (1986)). This is especially
    
    true when the decision-making process has remained unchanged and the same
    
    person or persons are still in charge of making the hiring, promotion, and
    
    termination decisions, a circumstance, as detailed below, closely analogous to that
    
    in the instant case. See id. In those situations, “evidence of prior discrimination
    
    ‘might in some circumstances support the inference that such discrimination
    
    continued.’” Id. (quoting Bazemore, 478 U.S. at 402). In light of the analogous
    
    nature of the inquiries under Title VII and Establishment Clause claims such as
    
    this, it seems particularly incongruous to exclude past acts of misconduct under
    
    the endorsement test when those same prior alleged acts of misconduct would be
    
    admissible to prove discriminatory intent under Title VII.
    
    
                                             -24-
          D. Conclusion
    
          The distinction drawn by the majority between motive and purpose is at
    
    odds with the Supreme Court’s consistent practice of using the terms
    
    interchangeably. At a minimum, even if an appropriate distinction can be drawn
    
    between the two, the Supreme Court’s jurisprudence offers no support for the
    
    assertion that Torgerson’s motive, while not dispositive, is irrelevant for the
    
    purpose of pleading and proving that he acted with an improper purpose.
    
    Furthermore, the policy arguments advanced by the majority in support of its
    
    position are far from compelling. Finally, the majority’s rigid rule of relevance is
    
    inconsistent with the “inclusive approach” to such evidence embodied in the
    
    Federal Rules of Evidence and is inconsistent with this circuit’s precedent in the
    
    analogous area of Title VII.
    
    
    
    III. APPLICATION OF THE ENDORSEMENT TEST’S PURPOSE PRONG
    
          A proper application of the endorsement test’s purpose prong justifies the
    
    district court’s dismissal of Bauchman’s original complaint for failure to state a
    
    claim. The district court erred, however, in denying Bauchman an opportunity to
    
    amend her complaint.
    
    
    
    
                                             -25-
          A. Bauchman’s Original Complaint
    
          As aptly noted by the majority, the gravamen of Bauchman’s original
    
    complaint is as follows: the inclusion of religious songs in the Choir’s repertoire
    
    and the performance of those songs at religious sites, standing alone, constituted a
    
    violation of the Establishment Clause. Bauchman does not allege in her original
    
    complaint that Torgerson selected either the Choir’s repertoire or places of
    
    performance with the subjective purpose of advancing religion. Instead,
    
    Bauchman’s allegations are limited to an implicit claim that the actions of
    
    Torgerson had the effect of endorsing religion. See Majority Op. at 25-27
    
    (explaining at length basis for Bauchman’s original complaint). So interpreted,
    
    the district court did not err in dismissing Bauchman’s original complaint.
    
          The inclusion of religious songs as part of a choir repertoire and the
    
    performance of a high school choir at churches, synagogues, wards, and other
    
    religious venues, standing alone, do not constitute per se violations of the
    
    Establishment Clause. See Edwards, 482 U.S. at 605 (Powell, J., concurring). As
    
    noted by the Fifth Circuit in Doe v. Duncanville Independent School District, 
    70 F.3d 402
    , 407 (5th Cir. 1995), a large percentage of choral music is “based on
    
    sacred themes or text.” Given the prevalence of devotional lyrics in choral music,
    
    no reasonable person could conclude that the inclusion of religious songs in the
    
    Choir’s repertoire had the effect of endorsing religion. Furthermore, no
    
    
                                             -26-
    reasonable, objective person could conclude that, standing alone, the inclusion of
    
    religious venues in the Choir’s performance sites had the effect of endorsing
    
    religion. As a consequence, Bauchman’s original complaint, which does not
    
    allege Torgerson acted with the purpose of advancing religion, fails to state a
    
    claim upon which relief can be granted.
    
          B. Bauchman’s Amended Complaint
    
          Rule 15(a) of the Federal Rules of Civil Procedure provides that a party
    
    may amend the pleadings after the time for amending as a matter of right “only by
    
    leave of court or by written consent of the adverse party; and leave shall be freely
    
    given when justice so requires.” Fed. R. Civ. P. 15(a). In Foman v. Davis, 
    371 U.S. 178
     (1962), the Supreme Court explained the approach that district courts
    
    should take in deciding whether to permit a party to amend the pleadings:
    
          If the underlying facts or circumstances relied upon by a plaintiff
          may be a proper subject of relief, he ought to be afforded an
          opportunity to test his claim on the merits. In the absence of any
          apparent or declared reason--such as undue delay, bad faith or
          dilatory motive on the part of the movant, repeated failure to cure
          deficiencies by amendments previously allowed, undue prejudice to
          the opposing party by virtue of allowance of the amendment, futility
          of amendment, etc.--the leave sought should, as the rules require, be
          “freely given.”
    
    Id. at 182. This court reviews the district court’s decision to deny Bauchman’s
    
    motion to amend for abuse of discretion. See Hom v. Squire, 
    81 F.3d 969
    , 973
    
    (10th Cir. 1996).
    
    
                                              -27-
    1. Futility
    
          The district court denied Bauchman’s motion to amend on the grounds that
    
    her proposed amendments were futile. The majority also concludes that
    
    Bauchman’s proposed amendments are futile, 7 and thus affirms the district court’s
    
    denial of Bauchman’s proposed amendments. The majority’s conclusion that
    
    Bauchman’s proposed amendments are futile is based, however, on its unduly
    
    rigid view of the nature of the endorsement test’s purpose prong. Under a proper
    
    view of the Establishment Clause, Bauchman’s proposed amended complaint, by
    
    alleging that Torgerson chose the Choir’s repertoire and performance venues with
    
    the express purpose of advancing religion, along with her allegations regarding
    
    Torgerson’s twenty-year pattern of misconduct, states a claim upon which relief
    
    can be granted. 8 Accordingly, the district court abused its discretion in rejecting
    
          7
            The majority apparently reaches this conclusion on a significantly different
    ground than did the district court. The district court concluded that both the
    effect and purpose prongs of the endorsement test must be viewed objectively
    and, therefore, “actual” purpose was irrelevant. The majority explicitly rejects
    the district court’s mistaken construction of the endorsement test’s purpose prong,
    holding that Bauchman can state an Establishment Clause claim by demonstrating
    that the defendants’ “‘actual’ purpose is to endorse or disapprove of religion.”
    Majority Op. at 22.
          8
           In conducting this futility analysis, it is important to be mindful of the
    procedural posture of this case. The district court dismissed Bauchman’s original
    complaint under Fed. R. Civ. P. 12(b)(6) because that complaint failed to state a
    claim. On appeal, this court’s analysis of futility must center on whether
    Bauchman’s proposed amendments, as supported by the affidavits attached to her
    complaint, cure the deficiencies in her original complaint. See Mountain View
    Pharmacy v. Abbott Lab., 
    630 F.2d 1383
    , 1386 (10th Cir. 1980). Thus, the real
    
                                             -28-
    Bauchman’s proposed amendments as futile. See Reliance Ins. Co. v. Mast
    
    Constr. Co., 
    84 F.3d 372
    , 375-76 (10th Cir. 1996) (holding that abuse of
    
    discretion is established if district court’s decision is based on an error of law).
    
          As the majority notes, Bauchman’s proposed amended complaint “clearly
    
    asserts [Torgerson’s] conduct was motivated by a religious purpose” and
    
    “contains numerous allegations to support [Bauchman’s] claim that [Torgerson]
    
    has unconstitutionally promoted his religious beliefs in the classroom for over
    
    twenty years.” Majority Op. at 44-46. In particular, Bauchman’s proposed
    
    amended complaint and supporting affidavits allege that “Torgerson engaged for
    
    many years, and continues to engage, in the advocacy, promotion, endorsement
    
    and proselytizing of his religious beliefs and practices, which included requiring
    
    students to attend and participate in events during which religious worship has
    
    
    
    
    question is whether Bauchman’s proposed amendments state a claim upon which
    relief can be granted. In deciding whether Bauchman’s proposed amendments
    state a claim,
           “We will uphold a dismissal [under Federal Rule of Civil Procedure
           12(b)(6)] only when it appears that the plaintiff can prove no set of
           facts in support of the claims that would entitle the plaintiff to
           relief.” In performing our review, we accept all well-pleaded
           allegations as true and construe them in the light most favorable to
           plaintiffs. We note that “‘[t]he Federal Rules of Civil Procedure
           erect a powerful presumption against rejecting pleadings for failure
           to state a claim.’”
    Maez v. Mountain States Tel. & Tel., 
    54 F.3d 1488
    , 1496 (10th Cir. 1995)
    (quotations and citations omitted).
    
                                              -29-
    occurred.” The proposed amended complaint further alleges that Torgerson
    
    undertook this course of activity for the express purpose of endorsing religion.
    
          In support of her allegation that Torgerson chose the Choir’s repertoire and
    
    places of performance with the express purpose of endorsing religion, Bauchman
    
    alleges a twenty-year pattern of misconduct on the part of Torgerson in the
    
    administration of the Choir. 9 This alleged misconduct included, among other
    
    allegations, the following: 10
    
                In 1977, while employed as director of the A Cappella Choir
          Class at South High School in Salt Lake City, Torgerson forced the
    
          9
           Bauchman’s ability to discover evidence of Torgerson’s past conduct was
    seriously hampered by the district court’s ruling which limited discovery to the
    1994-95 school year. The district court’s order was based on its erroneous
    conclusion that evidence of “actual” purpose and intent was irrelevant because the
    endorsement test’s purpose prong is viewed from an objective perspective. See
    supra note 7; see also supra Section III of this separate opinion (noting that
    Torgerson’s past conduct is relevant and admissible for the purpose of proving
    Torgerson’s motive, intent, and knowledge during the 1994-95 school year).
          10
            In reciting the lengthy list of Torgerson’s alleged past misdeeds, this
    separate opinion does not express any opinion on the ultimate admissibility upon
    a motion for summary judgment or at trial of any of the alleged past misdeeds.
    Nevertheless, the allegations raise a serious and substantial question about
    patterns of misconduct which may be admissible under Fed. R. Evid. 404(b) to
    prove intent, knowledge, and motive. See supra Section III of this separate
    opinion (discussing admissibility of Torgerson’s alleged past misconduct for
    purpose of proving motive, intent, or knowledge). It must be noted, however, that
    before these alleged misdeeds could be admitted under Rule 404(b), they would
    be subject to the balancing of probativeness and prejudice set out in Fed. R. Evid.
    403, a task that the district court did not undertake in light of its erroneous
    conclusion that the endorsement test’s purpose prong operates as an objective test
    and its subsequent resolution of the case on the pleadings. See supra note 7
    (discussing approach taken by district court).
    
                                            -30-
    students in his Choir class to attend the offering of prayers and
    sacraments at LDS worship services a[s] part of the regular, required,
    graded public school curriculum.
           ....
           During 1980, through his position as the director of the A
    Cappella Choir Class at South High School, Torgerson used an
    application form for admission to the Choir Class that inquired as to
    the applicant’s religious affiliation. Torgerson inquired about the
    applicants religious affiliations in order to limit the Choir Class to
    members of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints (“LDS
    Church”) because the Choir Class regularly participated in LDS
    religious services, which participation included speaking and singing
    presentations by students. The Choir Class did not participate in the
    religious services of any other religious organization.
           During the 1992-93 school year, when Torgerson was
    employed as the director of the A Cappella Choir class at West High
    School, Torgerson required the Choir Class to perform approximately
    once each month at LDS worship services.
           ....
           During the 1992-93 school year, and in the years following,
    Torgerson frequently discussed the religious content of the many
    religious devotional songs he required the West High School Choir
    Classes to sing and used the religious content of the songs to
    advocate his own religious beliefs.
           During the 1993-94 school year, while employed as the
    director of the A Cappella Choir Class at West High School,
    Torgerson repeatedly advocated his religion in the Choir Class,
    frequently stated that he was aware of and disagreed with the United
    States Supreme Court decisions forbidding the advocacy of religion
    in public school classes, and frequently stated that he would continue
    in his advocacy of religion in public school classes even though he
    knew that doing so violated established law.
           During the 1993-94 school year, Torgerson required the West
    High School Choir Classes to practice the religious song, “Lamb of
    God.” During the practicing of “Lamb of God,” Torgerson turned off
    the lights in the classroom and, to the outrage of several students,
    instructed the Choir Class to visualize “Jesus dying for our sins.”
           ....
           During [a] Pacific Northwest Tour in Salem, Oregon, the West
    High School Choir Class performed at an LDS “fireside” service,
    
                                     -31-
          where Torgerson portrayed the Choir Class as an LDS religious
          choir. At the “fireside”, LDS Choir Class members “bore their
          testimonies” about their personal relationship with Jesus and
          proclaimed that the LDS Church is the only true religion. The Choir
          Class performed solely Christian devotional music as part of the LDS
          worship services.
    
          The proposed amended complaint and attached affidavits further allege that
    
    in the year immediately preceding the 1994-95 school year, Torgerson (1)
    
    utilized the religious content of the Choir’s devotional songs to advocate his own
    
    religious beliefs; and (2) had the Choir perform at religious worship services
    
    where “LDS Choir Class members ‘bore their testimonies’ about their personal
    
    relationship with Jesus and proclaimed that the LDS Church is the only true
    
    religion.” These subsidiary allegations relate directly to Bauchman’s allegation
    
    that Torgerson chose the Choir’s repertoire and performance venues for the
    
    prohibited purpose of advancing religion. 11 Under the majority’s curious new rule
    
    of constitutional relevance, these past manifestations of purpose are somehow
    
    converted into mere irrelevant expressions of motive which fail to state an
    
    
    
          11
             These subsidiary allegations are particularly significant in light of the fact
    Torgerson was officially reprimanded in April 1994 for offering a prayer before a
    Choir performance that took place at a Mormon worship service. At that service,
    the Choir allegedly performed only religious devotional music and Torgerson
    allegedly portrayed the Choir Class as an LDS religious choir. Because the
    Choir’s repertoire remained the same and the Choir continued to perform at
    religious venues during the 1994-95 school year, a reasonable inference may be
    that Torgerson’s pre-1994-95 expressed intent to endorse religion remained, but
    that his same intent was now merely unexpressed in light of the reprimand.
    
                                             -32-
    Establishment Clause civil rights claim. As detailed at length above, this is a
    
    particularly thin reed upon which to base a finding of futility.
    
          The allegations that Torgerson chose the Choir’s repertoire and
    
    performance venues for the specific purpose of advancing religion, along with the
    
    detailed supporting allegations, state a claim upon which relief can be granted.
    
    See Jaffree, 472 U.S. at 56; Edwards, 482 U.S. at 585; Lynch, 465 U.S. at 690
    
    (O’Connor, J., concurring). Accordingly, the district court erred in concluding
    
    that Bauchman’s proposed amendments were futile. 12 See supra note 8 (noting
    
    that the futility analysis in this case must focus on whether Bauchman’s proposed
    
    amendments state a claim upon which relief can be granted and noting that
    
    12(b)(6) dismissals are highly disfavored). Unfortunately, the majority
    
    compounds the district court’s error and makes it the law of the circuit when it
    
    affirms the district court’s finding of futility.
    
    
          12
             As an alternative ground for concluding that Bauchman’s proposed
    amendments were futile, the district court concluded that Bauchman’s proposed
    amended complaint would also be subject to dismissal on summary judgment.
    Although the majority does not reach the merits of the district court’s conclusion,
    it does note that proposed amendments may be denied as futile on this ground.
    Majority Op. at 51-52. The district court’s conclusion that Bauchman’s proposed
    amendments would not survive summary judgment is seriously flawed. As
    indicated above, the district court’s conclusion was based on the erroneous
    assumption that the endorsement test’s purpose prong is viewed objectively rather
    than subjectively. See supra note 7. Furthermore, because the district court erred
    in limiting formal discovery to the 1994-95 school year, see supra note 9, it did
    not have an adequate evidentiary picture upon which to resolve the summary
    judgment question.
    
                                               -33-
    2. Timeliness
    
          The district court held that Bauchman’s failure to amend her complaint
    
    prior to a ruling on defendants’ motion to dismiss and her failure to allege any
    
    “essential” facts not otherwise known prior to the dismissal of her original
    
    complaint was an alternate ground for denying Bauchman’s motion to amend.
    
    Because it concludes that Bauchman’s proposed amendments are futile, the
    
    majority decides not to reach the district court’s conclusion that Bauchman’s
    
    proposed amended complaint was untimely. See Majority Op. at 52-53.
    
    Nevertheless, the majority “question[s] the district court’s rationale under
    
    circumstances where, as here, the court deliberately deferred ruling on
    
    [Bauchman’s] motion to amend pending the completion of additional, limited
    
    discovery related to her newly asserted theory that defendants’ conduct was
    
    primarily for the purpose of promoting or proselytizing religion.” Id.
    
          The district court’s “question[able]” conclusion that Bauchman’s proposed
    
    amended complaint was untimely is manifestly unreasonable. See F.D.I.C. v.
    
    Oldenburg, 
    34 F.3d 1529
    , 1555 (10th Cir. 1994) (defining abuse of discretion as
    
    an arbitrary, capricious, whimsical, or manifestly unreasonable judgment). The
    
    fact that Bauchman did not allege any new “essential” facts in the amended
    
    complaint results from the district court’s erroneous ruling which precluded any
    
    discovery concerning Torgerson’s pre-1994-95 conduct on the theory that such
    
    
                                             -34-
    conduct was irrelevant to Bauchman’s claim under the endorsement test’s purpose
    
    prong. As indicated above, however, Torgerson’s personal intent and motivation
    
    in selecting the Choir’s repertoire and performance venues are relevant under the
    
    endorsement test’s purpose prong and Torgerson’s past conduct is relevant and
    
    potentially admissible under the Federal Rules of Evidence for the purpose of
    
    proving Torgerson’s motive, intent, and knowledge during the 1994-95 school
    
    year.
    
            Most importantly, there is no indication in the record and no district court
    
    findings that the defendants would have been prejudiced by allowing Bauchman
    
    to amend her complaint or that the proposed amendments were the product of bad
    
    faith or a dilatory motive on the part of Bauchman. See Davis, 371 U.S. at 182
    
    (holding that leave to amend must be “freely given” in the absence of undue
    
    delay, bad faith, dilatory motive, or futility). In light of the absence of either bad
    
    faith, a dilatory motive, or prejudice to the defendants, the district court’s
    
    decision that Bauchman’s proposed amended complaint was untimely is
    
    manifestly unreasonable.
    
    
    
    
                                              -35-
                                   V. CONCLUSION
    
          Purposeful, deliberate, and intentional efforts to advance or disapprove
    
    religion violate the Establishment Clause. See Lynch, 465 U.S. at 687-90
    
    (O’Connor, J., concurring). Bauchman’s original complaint fails to state a claim
    
    upon which relief can be granted under this standard. Her original complaint does
    
    not contain a claim that Torgerson acted with the purpose of advancing religion
    
    and none of the actions alleged in the complaint have the inherent effect of
    
    advancing religion. Bauchman’s proposed amended complaint, on the other hand,
    
    does state a claim upon which relief can be granted. The proposed amended
    
    complaint alleges that Torgerson selected the Choir’s repertoire and places of
    
    performance with the deliberate purpose of advancing religion. Furthermore,
    
    Bauchman’s amended complaint contains numerous subsidiary allegations which
    
    detail at length Torgerson’s manifestations of that improper purpose over the
    
    previous twenty years. Despite the majority’s conclusion to the contrary, the
    
    allegations regarding Torgerson’s alleged past instances of misconduct are
    
    relevant to Bauchman’s claim of an improper purpose and are sufficient to state
    
    an Establishment Clause civil rights claim.
    
          A proper reading of Supreme Court precedent establishes that the
    
    Establishment Clause prohibits public school teachers from utilizing their
    
    positions for the deliberate purpose of endorsing or disapproving religion.
    
    
                                            -36-
    Bauchman’s proposed amended complaint states a claim for relief under this
    
    standard. The bare sufficiency of Bauchman’s proposed amended complaint does
    
    not, however, suggest that Bauchman should prevail on the merits or that she is
    
    even necessarily entitled to a trial on the merits. It means only that she has
    
    demonstrated the filing of her proposed amended complaint was not futile, she is
    
    entitled to discovery unconfined to the 1994-95 school year, and she should be
    
    allowed to proceed to the next appropriate test on the substantive issues under the
    
    Establishment Clause, whether that test be a motion for summary judgment or a
    
    trial on the merits. In short, the Establishment Clause issue in this case is in need
    
    of an adequate record. 13
    
    
    
    
          13
            In light of the majority’s resolution of this case on the threshold issue that
    Bauchman’s proposed amended complaint fails to state a claim, and in light of
    this dissent, it is neither necessary nor appropriate for this separate opinion to
    address the remaining multitude of alternative dispositive issues addressed by the
    parties on appeal.
    
                                             -37-