Earlier this week, Americans United and the American Civil Liberties Union celebrated a win for church-state separation when the last of five public schools in Connecticut agreed to move graduation from a church to a secular venue.
Americans United has pointed out many times that public schools need not be “religion-free” zones. There are ways students can meet for prayer or to read religious texts – but it has to be their choice.
In Georgetown, S.C., a local resident, Violet Infinger, had been coming onto school grounds for 10 years to pray with students and pass out religious literature.
Happy New Year! After a break for the holidays, I'm back at work here at Americans United. And, as far as I know, it's back to school for kids across the country today, too.
In an effort to make everyone's lives easier in 2010 – including students, parents, teachers and school officials – we'd like to start things off by asking all public school staff to make this a constitutionally sound new year and resolve to uphold the wall of separation between church and state.
An unusual story began making the rounds on right-wing Web sites last week. It seems a second grader in a Taunton, Mass., public school had been suspended for drawing a picture of Jesus on the cross.
As the Taunton Daily Gazette reported, a class at Maxham Elementary School was supposedly given an assignment to make a Christmas-themed drawing. One 9-year-old boy drew a stick figure on a cross. He was suspended.
It's always nice when we can end the week on a high note. News reports indicate that Congress seems to be on board with adding new regulations to the school voucher scheme in the District of Columbia and eventually closing it entirely.
When I was six, the Christmas pageant organizer at our neighborhood church offered me a Little Golden Book for every carol I sang. I loved to read and considered that quite a deal. Unfortunately, my repertoire at the time wasn't very large, but I still managed to score three books!
I still like Christmas carols myself, but I know that not everyone does. This is an incredibly diverse nation, and a lot of people don't observe Christmas.
That why a new ballot proposal being pushed in California is so crazy.
Growing up in Ohio, I was pretty oblivious to the fact that students at my high school were anything but Christian. I just assumed that everyone was but me.
That's because students met for Bible studies club, or some of my friends would talk about their church's youth group. The students who weren't Christian never really brought up religion at all.
Looking back, I realize now that I actually went to high school with a slightly more diverse crowd than I knew. I wish I had known that then – I would have felt a little less like an outcast.
Last night, cheerleaders at Lakeview-Fort Olgethorpe (LFO) High School were more popular than ever.
According the Chattanooga Times Free Press, more than 500 people showed up at a rally outside a Chik-fil-A Restaurant in Fort Olgethorpe, Ga., to support these young women who wanted to display signs with Bible verses at football games.
When I was growing up, "melting pot" was one of the terms we learned in our social studies class.
My textbook told me that America was the perfect example of a "melting pot," which is defined as "a place where a variety of races, cultures, or individuals assimilate into a cohesive whole."
The book explained that in the United States, we are all welcome to practice our own faiths and retain our own cultural beliefs. Diversity is what makes America a better, more interesting place.