ERIC Number: ED436822
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1999
Public Schools & Religious Communities: A First Amendment Guide.
Vanderbilt Univ., Nashville, TN. Freedom Forum First Amendment Center.; American Jewish Congress, New York, NY.; Christian Legal Society, Annandale, VA.
This brochure presents constitutional principles and guidelines to enable schools and religious groups to work together. It states that public schools must be neutral concerning religion in all of their activities; students have the right to engage in, or decline to engage in, religious activities so long as they do not interfere with the rights of others; and cooperative programs between religious institutions and the public schools are permissible only if participation is not limited to religious groups and a student's grades or class rank are not affected by participation or nonparticipation; and student participation in such programs is not conditioned on religious affiliation. The brochure states that schools may call on religious leaders during crises, that religious leaders are not given routine access to students, that public schools may cooperate with mentoring projects run by religious institutions, and that religious institutions may serve as shelters for students seeking safety. Public schools may arrange to use the facilities of religious institutions provided that the schools have a secular educational purpose for seeking to use the facilities, the facilities are not used for proselytizing students, and such use does not necessitate an ongoing administrative entanglement between the school district and the religious institution. (RJM)
Descriptors: Compliance (Legal), Constitutional Law, Elementary Secondary Education, Federal Government, Guidelines, Legal Responsibility, Religion, School Administration, State Church Separation
For full text: < http://www.freedomforum.org/newsstand/brochures>.
Publication Type: Guides - Non-Classroom
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: Vanderbilt Univ., Nashville, TN. Freedom Forum First Amendment Center.; American Jewish Congress, New York, NY.; Christian Legal Society, Annandale, VA.