Schools are learning places that bring together people of different creed, race, and cultural background; therefore, there is a need for an accommodationist[sic] perspective in schools on religious matters. This need supported by the American constitution, under the First Amendment, which intends to embrace religious diversity by not proposing or supporting any religion as superior to the others (Kahan 11). The freedom of worship and the freedom expression are entitled to the American population, but the execution of these freedoms should not undermine or disregard another person’s belief system. I would like to investigate Davis statement that the observation of the First Amendment enhances social cohesion, harmony, and tolerance while inhibiting the occurrence of religious conflicts as in present in some European countries (43).
It is the duty of the guardian/parent to give their child religious teachings and teachings on moral values. On the other hand, it would not be right for a teacher to advertise or promote a certain religion to the students, since this would lead to the victimization of children that profess different beliefs (Kahan 11). The fear of such scenario has led conflict of content or materials used in school that are specific to a particular religion (Haynes 14). Public schools receive funding from the government therefore public schools have to follow the First Amendment. Otherwise, it would seem like the government is promoting a particular religion and leaving out others, the guidelines on such issues in the Establishment Clause (Center for Public Education 3). An example is whereby school functions should not have a religious inclination since it would be in violation of the First Amendment (Okun 30).
The research will look into the effects of the First Amendment in schools, the relevance, and recommendations. This research will also investigate on the role of the First Amendment in promoting social harmony and tolerance. The source of information will be scholarly articles and books on religion in school and the application of the First Amendment.
CPE. Religion and Public Schools. The Center for Public Education. Text
Davis, Micheal J. Religion, Democracy, and Public Schools. Journal of Law and Religion. Text
Haynes, Charles C. Getting religion right in public schools. Kappan Magazine. Text
Kahan David, T.H. Religious Boundaries in Public School Physical-Activity Settings. Ed. Sawyer Thomas H. Journal of Physical Education, Recreation & Dance.(2003).Text
Okun, Susan K. Religion in Public Schools: What Does the First Amendment Allow?(1996). Text