Religion in Education

By lcary
  • First Publicly Supported Schools

    The "Old Deluder Satan" Act required the establishment and support of schools in town with 50 or more families. The schools were to teach children to read and write so they could achieve salvation. They could also fight the temptations of Satan because they were able to read The Bible.
  • First Amendment Enacted

    First Amendment put into practice. The First Amendment stated that "Congress shall make no law respecting the establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof..."
  • Salute

    The Supreme Court made it clear in West Virginia v. Barnette that students may not be required to salute the flag.
  • Everson v. Board of Education

    landmark decision by the Supreme Court that applied religion clauses in the United States Bill of Rights.
  • Religious Education

    In 1948 the Supreme Court declared that religious instruction during school hours was unconstitutional. It lead to "release time" where instruction took place off school grounds.
  • Engel v. Vitale

    Supreme Court declared that school prayer was unconstitutional.
  • School Prayer and Bible Reading

    On February 27, 1963 the Supreme Court formally annoucned that school prayer and/or Bible reading violated the establishment clause.
  • No Religion in the Curriculum

    The Supreme Court ruled in Epperson v. Arkansas that a teacher cannot teach the theory that mankind acsended or descended from a lower order of animals. Teachers cannot adopt a textbook that uses this theory.
  • Lemon v. Kurtzman

    In 1971 the Supreme Court announced a three-part test to judge clause claims in Lemon v. Kurtzman. The policy must 1. have a secular purpose, 2. have a primary effect that neither advances nor impedes religion, and 3. avoid excessive entanglement of government with religion.
  • Wisconsin v. Yoder

    The Amish file a claim that their children should be exempt from attending school after eighth grade.
  • Student Prayer Clubs in Schools

    In the case Widmar v. Vincent, it was decided that students could meet voluntarily on school grounds to worship or discuss religioun.
  • Voluntary Prayer

    Supreme Court struck down an Alabama law that gave students time for voluntary prayer or silent meditation. The Court said it encouraged students to pray.
  • 10 Commandments Come off Display

    The Supreme Court said that it was unconstitutional to require the posting of the Ten Commandments in public school classrooms.
  • No Clergy or Benediction at Graduation

    It was decided in the Lee v. Weisman case that Clergymen and prayer at graduation was unacceptable. Some schools try to find ways around the decision by saying the ceremonies are a "forum for students expression".
  • "Under God"

    Michael Newdow filed a claim stating that the Pledge of Allegiance is constitutional because it says, "Under God" in it. He continues to appeal the courts.