The Importance Of Prayer In Public Schools

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Many public schools do not approve of prayer in the populated, student-filled environment. The definition of prayer is” a devout petition to God or an object of worship”(Dictionary). While private schools are capable of creating their own rules an regulations regarding religious practices such as prayer, public schools, as they are regulated by the state and federal government, are not able to create these regulations on their own. This creates the argument of whether or not public display of religious practices such as prayer should be legalized by state as well as national school board agencies. Although Prayer has many benefits, it is still a choice; Prayer is not forced, it’s an individual choice, and the First Amendment states freedom of religion. It has been argued that prayer in public school are forced upon students in the public school. From the journal by Dierenfield on the Schempp case about Madalyn Murray and her family this action was present. An excerpt from the journal said “ Using the public address system they opened up with a ‘ Fact for the Day’- ‘Mt. Everest is 29,000 feet high’- to get the students thinking, followed by ten bible verses, the Lord’s prayer, the salute to the flag, and school announcements” (Dierenfield 63). As shown here the students were forced to pray and to participate in school church functions. Additionally, Murray's son Ellory felt just as offended. Murray said “ At first Ellory thought of morning devotions as harmless
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