The extent and presence of religion in communal schools is a contentious and difficult issue. The latest advance by public educators to do away with religion in school programs may confirm to be injurious towards developing coaching of students. The US government has tried to interpret the proper link between public schools and religion for many years.
The role of religion in public schools has been highly debated. This paper explores the roles played by religion in public education. Due to the significance of these roles; it supports the idea that religious schools should receive public aid.
The role religion in public education
Religion has played an important role in public education by collectively joining people of diverse nationalities, culture, languages and creed. It has integrated these people together on the grounds of what they share and endeavor to achieve jointly. Moreover, it has allowed students from diverse cultures to develop a union of purpose and spirit that celebrates and appreciates their diversity.
This has promoted civil unity from which religious harmony is certain to grow. Besides, religious education has significantly contributed towards developing an informed and integrated society that enhances unity in diversity.1 Therefore, religious schools should be supported.
In expounding the role of religion in communal education, it is imperative to mention that the advantages of a consistent teaching program in the lessons attached to religion should be appreciated. A plural, open, historically informed, interdisciplinary and intercultural teaching on religion in communal schools is in line with global development agenda.
Additionally, it is a concept that is gaining popularity and significance throughout the world. The role of religion in education is a significant human need which all students should be aware of if they are to be considered educated. Hence, schools that embrace religion should receive public aid.
Religion plays a significant role in expounding the origin of the world. It is difficult to teach literature, philosophy or history without comprehending religion and its effects in the contemporary society. Efforts to secularize the past distort power that created the planet in which we live in. Providing elective lessons in world religions or lessons to study bible stories and how they affect literature is absolutely correct towards good quality education.
However, teaching a particular religious principle or providing prayer in a specific religious tradition is completely a different issue. In public schooling, the enforced practice of a specific religion, or the training of certain religious practices is inappropriate. If all schools could provide religious courses where students would study religion instead of being instructed with religion, then such schools should be supported by the public.
Religious education promotes spirituality by instructing the public on how to interact with environment around them, and allowing spirituality to direct their individual growth. Religious education helps the public to appreciate that they are equal in the world which may be perceived as an enormous kingdom that motivates fear.2
Hence, religion helps students to understand the ways they can boost their morals in society and also employ their personal talents and self worth. Therefore, religious education plays a vital role of promoting morality in public schools and for this reason, religious schools ought to be supported.
Religious education helps the public in understanding different convictions, what they accept as true as well as how and why this has influenced history. It is impossible to learn and understand our neighbors without comprehending their religious beliefs. Therefore, schools that include religion in their study programs should be encouraged.
Religious education plays an important role in allowing schools to teach courses that are intellectually essential to develop educated population. These include literature, mathematics, history, arts, languages, sciences and social studies. These subjects constitute the unrefined resources which can be used by the future generation to model the vision of a democratic system and their careers. Consequently, schools that include religion in their curriculum ought to receive public aid.
Inclusion of religious education in school curricula has promoted social justice and respect for environment among students. This has been achieved by encouraging religious education that embraces common values promoted by every religion such as human exploration for the implication and the integrity of service to other people.
In addition, religious education provides students with a learning program that discusses religion in its broadest meaning. This form of education has allowed students to engage with several religious backgrounds in a manner that encourages them to develop their moral dimensions and personal wellbeing.
Religious education enhances a reasonable approach towards learning and teaching various elements that are valued by society. It offers the public an opportunity to understand itself better and develop a wider social acceptance of other people.3. By instructing students on the function of religion in society, an integrated, multi-traditional program in religious study forms a crucial component of a well structured and inclusive education.
Religious education offers an opportunity for students to develop a disciplined approach that will empower them to appreciate a universal humanity in religious multiplicity. It forms a context in which students can improve their individual perception and the way they perceive other people, deepen their potential for sympathy and ultimately reflect seriously on challenges facing religious concerns.4
Religion plays a crucial aspect of human undertaking that students ought to learn. Religious study programs provide students with relevant and significant discipline of knowledge. Religion plays an important role in public education by promoting specific concerns, founded on the general conviction that societal problems originate from lack of religious faith.
This can only be rectified through a specific interpretation of religion. The knowledge, appreciation and understanding of the extent of our textured and rich religious multiplicity are mirrored in school curriculums.
Religion is not restricted towards various cultures in society. It is also concerned with origins and traditional practices of various communities in society. Therefore, religious education is crucial, though it cannot be regarded as an exclusive foundation of ethical values.
There is increasing fear concerning the universal deterioration of ethical standards in the world, the increasing crime rates and evident lack of value for human life. These are important areas of concern. Religious education provides the basis for moral restoration. 5 It is also a major resource designed for clarifying ethics, morals, and developing respect for other people.
To recap it all, it is worth mentioning that religion has played vital roles in public education. For instance, it has assisted students to develop acceptable societal morals alongside contributing towards the well being of society in general. As a matter of fact, religion has been instrumental in reducing crime rate. Therefore, it is important for the public to support schools that include religion in their curriculum.
Duncan, Ann & Jones, Steven. Church-state issues in America today. Westport, Conn: Praeger, 2008.
Fraser, James. Between church and state: religion and public education in a multicultural America. New York: St. Martin’s Press, 1999.
Nord, Warren. Religion and American education: rethinking a national dilemma. Chapel Hill: University of North Carolina Press, 1994.
- Ann Duncan & Jones Steven, Church-state issues in America today. (Westport, Conn: Praeger, 2008), 100.
- James Fraser, Between church and state: religion and public education in a multicultural America. (New York: St. Martin’s Press, 1999), 200.
- Ann Duncan & Jones Steven, p.100
- Warren Nord, Religion and American education: rethinking a national dilemma. (Chapel Hill: University of North Carolina Press, 1994), 400.
- James Fraser, p.88.