WV Republican lawmakers to allow Bible classes in public schools

9 June 2020

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Under a new West Virginia law, county boards of education can now offer courses that familiarise students with the Bible, reports UPI.

A new law allowing public school districts to offer elective social studies classes on the Bible to students in ninth grade or above took effect this week in West Virginia.

The law — as well as similar statutes introduced at state legislatures around the nation in recent years — sparked a debate over whether the classes will be an objective study of the Bible’s impact on American history or unconstitutional religious instruction, typically about Christianity.

Under the West Virginia law, county boards of education may offer courses that familiarize students with the Bible. The purpose is “to teach students knowledge of biblical content, characters, poetry and narratives that are prerequisites to understanding the development of American society and culture, including literature, art, music, mores, oratory and public policy.”

The bill authorising the classes was passed 30-3 by the West Virginia Senate on 4 March and became law on 2 May.

The American Civil Liberties Union of West Virginia opposed the bill. Eli Baumwell, the organisation’s policy director, said implementing a Bible class in a constitutional manner is always difficult. “You’re likely to end up with something that promotes religion,” Baumwell told UPI.

President Trump is in favour of students studying the Bible in public schools. Last year Trump stated numerous states introduced bills for Bible literacy classes that would give students the option of studying the Bible. “Starting to make a turn back? Great!” Trump tweeted.

West Virginia was once a solidly Democratic state; it voted Democratic in every election from 1932 to 1996, except for the Republican landslides of 1956, 1972, and 1984. However, in recent years it has drifted to becoming solidly Republican, and has stayed that way since it was won by George W. Bush in 2000. Barack Obama, for example, failed to win even a single county in 2012. West Virginia is one of two states where Hillary Clinton did not win any counties.

UPI reports, “Bills to allow or require classes on the Bible in public schools have had mixed results. Among the states that passed or expanded earlier statutes in the past few years are Alabama, Arkansas, Georgia and Kentucky. Lawmakers in Iowa, Mississippi and North Dakota were unsuccessful.”

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1 COMMENT

  1. You have just defended Breaking our American Constitution – You need to be arrested on Federal charges!!!

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