Today, we have an interesting development in the ongoing skirmish between some parents and school boards who have allowed the volunteer-run “Bible-in-schools” Programme into their schools.
The article in question appeared on the Stuff website this morning. You can read it here.
It tells the story of a father who successfully campaigned the Human Rights Commission to have the school move Bible class from school time. The school has moved the class to a lunch time session instead (arguably still “outside of school hours”) but that is not good enough.
The school has abided by the intent of the ruling – if not the letter – and it is still not enough. Being so intent on not having something they disagree with in the school, they’ll campaign to remove the right to choose from the other two groups of people involved – those who want the classes, and those who don’t mind them all. I’d warrant that the latter group is actually the larger of the three..
It would seem, then, that the problem isn’t with the Programme being run inside school time at all but that it is even being run.
Another fallacious argument I have been given is that, by allowing these programmes, it is “state-sanctioning of Christianity” and, here’s the kicker, that “it is discriminatory in that no other religion outside Christianity is permitted to come in and teach at these times.” (This is the single part of Peter Harrison’s comment on my previous post with which I do not agree.)
I have not heard of, nor have I seen any articles regarding, other religions outside Christianity not being permitted to come to schools – at this or any other time. In fact, there was a case of a North Shore school which spent actual school funds building a prayer room for their Muslim students. No outcry from the “Keep Religion out of Schools” folks over that one I might add.
It certainly looks more like the other religions are busy doing things that are important to them rather than wanting to do this and being excluded from entry.
Please, if anyone has some real proof that other religions are not allowed, let me know in the comments below. Oh and, if you feel the need to post some snarky response and that makes you feel better, be my guest.