Commentary: Religious debate in school? Yes: Unbiased discussion essential to understanding others


Source: Orlando Sentinel

By Derryck Green

Teachers should absolutely discuss religion with their students. A comprehensive education necessarily includes learning and discussing issues of faith.

This is not an easy process when rules keeping religion off school grounds are rigidly enforced.

The underlying question that really seems to be driving the religious education debate is whether teachers should discuss Christianity with their students. The answer should be “yes,” provided that discussion does not seek to persuade or discourage students from further academic or personal consideration.

The reality is that the majority of people on the planet are religious. The majority of people in human history have been religious. Even most Americans are still religious, though the number is declining. Thus American students should be exposed to religion (or religions), if for no other reason than to have a functional knowledge of faith and principles such as doctrine, dogma, religious practice and spirituality. Students should understand religious influences on human ideas, thoughts, attitudes and behaviors — even if they decide not to follow any specific religion.

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