Religion's Place in Education Essay

1325 Words6 Pages
Abstract There have been many lawsuits that involve the issues between religion and government state laws and regulations. As of today religion is still a very emotional issue between Christian churches and schools. Issues such as prayer in school, reciting the pledge of allegiance (under God), teaching the Ten Commandments or evolution, are prohibited in public schools today. Educational administrators must be aware of these issues and the laws that must be adherent to. Religious Issues The Constitution made no reference to religious liberties of United States citizens during ratification of states; the Bill of Rights does address religious freedom but over the past decade the conflict between church and state has increased…show more content…
Because of the decision made in the Cantwell case, the Fourteenth Amendment makes the First Amendment applicable to state action, which makes the establishment clause significant for the administration of public schools (Essex, 2002). One of the most highly debated issues in schools today is prohibiting of school-sponsored prayer. Before the issues with prayer in schools, prayer was offered in public places before an event of at the start of a day. The problems that arise from having prayer in school was that because of the many cultures in schools some students were being force to deny their own belief and religious freedom. Congress, state legislatures, and citizens tried to find an alternative to this situation by adopting a prayer that was school-sponsored, non-denominational, voluntarily, and to be recited by each class in the presence of the classroom teacher which was composed by the New York Board of Regents in 1962. The prayer read “Almighty God, we acknowledge our independence upon thee and we beg thy blessing upon us, our parents, our teachers and our country” (Essex, 2002, p 17). The students that did not want to participate in the reciting the prayer would be excused from participation, but some parents still was not satisfied, saying
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