ERIC Number: EJ794768
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2008-May
Reference Count: 0
Whose Religious Values?
Marshall, Joanne M.
School Administrator, v65 n5 p28-29 May 2008
Public schools, since their founding in America in 1647, have reflected the demographic characteristics of the communities in which they are located. Because the United States has, until recently, been mostly Protestant Christian, many schooling practices have built upon the values of this faith. Pupils have sung Christmas songs at Christmas programs, prayed publicly at graduation ceremonies and varsity football game. Districts have considered teaching creationism alongside evolution. However, as the country has become more religiously diverse, federal courts have reviewed several of these Christian practices in cases that apply the First Amendment's Free Exercise and Establishment clauses to school situations. No school leader wants to be involved in time-consuming, expensive and public litigation. In this article, the author discusses how administrators and school boards can manage the shifting religious demographics in a school community legally and pro-actively.
Descriptors: Ceremonies, Federal Courts, Constitutional Law, State Church Separation, Court Litigation, Values, Religious Factors, Public Schools, Student Diversity, Student Rights, School Administration, Board of Education Role, Legal Responsibility, Christianity, Religious Cultural Groups
American Association of School Administrators. 801 North Quincy Street Suite 700, Arlington, VA 22203-1730. Tel: 703-528-0700; Fax: 703-841-1543; e-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org; Web site: http://www.aasa.org
Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Descriptive
Education Level: Elementary Secondary Education
Authoring Institution: N/A