Ok, this is going to be my first ever post and it’s going to be rough. (it’s hard to work on an iPad (damn auto correct) and I’ve never done a blog before)
Question? Is it ok to hand out religious texts to 10 and 11 year old children using the PUBLIC school system, which presumably entails effort and work hours from the school administration, secretaries, teachers and cleaning staff (to clean up the boxes and plastic rapping after the distribution of the handouts). How much time is taken away from public employees and the students lessons to hand out and organize this EVERY year? Who pays for this? YOU do.
Here in Ontario Canada many of the public elementary school boards have stopped the practice of allowing the Gideon’s bible society to use the schools staff and property as a distribution point for handing out their bibles to grade 5 classes every year. Some school boards are still continuing the practice. the Grimsby school board is still one of them.
My understanding is that is an opt-in process when the school sends home paperwork (printed and paid for the the school). The parents who don’t mind their kids getting a book can check YES. Those who do mind must check NO.
I instantly see issues with this in that SOME kids won’t receive that free new book and others will. Those children will have to explain to their friends why they didn’t get that shiny new book (that *must* be important or the school wouldn’t be handing it out). Plain and simple, kids can be cruel. And those who didn’t get a book May be made to feel different because many of their friends are flipping through it and they are not. That means every child, whether they were brought up in an Athiest home or a Muslim home or any other believe system aside from Christianity has yet another reason to feel like an outsider. They have too many other more important things to worry about.
My second issue is that is is NOT a *public* school boards mandate to allow ONE religion (in this case Christianity) to hand out religious materials year after year to 10 and 11 year old children. The amount of time and manpower that the school board allots to this program every year to help hand out these “free” bibles starts to add up for the general public and the taxes that you expect to be going towards children’s education rather than stopping the school learning time to hand out religious text to each grade 5 class in the region EVERY year. Meaning that the grade 6’s received it last year and the grade 7’s received it the year and the grade 8’s the year before that etc…
It is not the public school systems *mandate* to help a religion to hand out their religious material. THAT is what their places of worship are for.
Anyway, the Gideon’s are only handing out half of the bible. The Gideon’s handout is only the New testament and some psalms. I know why they are afraid to show the students the old testament, then they would have to explain all those god approved death, destruction, mass killing, rape and hatred.
Is it time that ALL school boards stopped helping one religion distribute their religious texts?
What are your thoughts on this?