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ERIC Number: EJ929556
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2008
Pages: 24
Abstractor: As Provided
ISSN: ISSN-0953-9964
Building a Nation: Religion and Values in the Public Schools of the USA, Australia, and South Africa
Mawdsley, Ralph D.; Cumming, Jacqueline Joy; de Waal, Elda
Education and the Law, v20 n2 p83-106 2008
Although the systems of public schools differ among Australia, South Africa and the USA, all three countries recognize that religion plays a significant role in determining values. All three countries have written constitutions but only South Africa and the USA have a Bill of Rights that protects persons' exercise of religious beliefs. In Australia, the place of religion in education has largely been shaped by state legislatures, administrative regulations and interpretations of the national constitution. In the USA, the long tradition of religious values being represented in public education has been severely restricted over the past 60 years, resulting in artificial judicial lines being drawn between private religious expression and government expression. However, even private expression can be prohibited if it interferes with the educational mission of a school. South Africa had a long tradition of Christian religious practices in government schools under apartheid. However, the post-apartheid 1996 Constitution and 1996 South African Schools Act still give these schools considerable latitude in investing religious values into the educational process. In Australia, values, religion and education have always been a preoccupation of those providing education, although the blurring of public and private education in Australia has resulted in a different direction for the role of religion than in the USA. (Contains 157 notes.)
Routledge. Available from: Taylor & Francis, Ltd. 325 Chestnut Street Suite 800, Philadelphia, PA 19106. Tel: 800-354-1420; Fax: 215-625-2940; Web site:
Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Descriptive
Education Level: Elementary Secondary Education
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers - Location: Australia; South Africa; United States
Identifiers - Laws, Policies, & Programs: Bill of Rights; First Amendment