As our students are heading back to their schools, it is a great time to be reminded of the religious liberties they have while in school. With all of the talk of so-called “separation of church and state,” I think many parents and students are reluctant to say anything that sounds remotely Christian, for fear of getting in trouble with the powers-that-be.
But we don’t have to tread so carefully!
Gateways To Better Education has some great resources. I ordered a couple hundred of their “Free To Speak” pamphlets. I gave them to our school superintendent, and as many parents as as I could. This short pamphlet summarizes the US Department of Education’s guidelines on what is allowed in school. In short, the Seven Freedoms are:
- Students can pray, read their Bibles or other religious material, and talk about their faith at school.
- Students can organize prayer groups and religious clubs, and announce their meetings like any other club.
- Students can express their faith in their class work and homework.
- Teachers can organize prayer groups with other teachers.
- Students may be able to go off campus to have religious studies during school hours.
- Students can express their faith at a school event.
- Students can express their faith at a graduation ceremony.
Don’t be intimidated. Don’t be uninformed. Know your rights as a US citizen.