GET GOD OUT OF OUR SCHOOLS
For God’s sake, please get out of our schools.
That’s the plea from parents who are taking landmark action against churches indoctrinating their kids. They claim it’s a breach of the Equal Opportunity Act.
“For many of these kids, it’s the first time they experience discrimination,” according to Scott Hedges from the group, Fairness in Religion in Schools.
My first memory of school is one of segregation. Once a week, I was left in an empty classroom because I wasn’t of the right faith.
The practice continues to this day.
In most states, religious instruction is compulsory.
If parents opt out, their children are given nothing to do. This is valuable teaching time.
My girlfriend Lisa was horrified to find her five-year-old’s colouring-in during scripture was on the theme of creationism.
“I wish they were teaching her more useful stuff, but I don’t want to take her out of scripture class because she might be ostracised,” she lamented.
When my seven-year-old started talking about how God made the birds and the bees, I countered with Darwin’s theory of evolution.
“Well Mum, you stick to your theory and I’ll stick to mine’!” he replied defiantly.
In NSW, the former Labor government brought in ethics classes as an alternative to scripture but their future is threatened by a bill introduced into the upper house by the Christian Democrats.
Instead of voting against the bill, the current Liberal government referred it to a parliamentary committee.
And it’s not just conservative governments singing from the same hymn sheet.
While the Howard government brought in the National School Chaplaincy Program, the Rudd government boosted funding to $220 million a year.
Evangelical activists are being paid by the government to convert children to Christianity.
As ACCESS Ministries’ CEO Canon Evonne Paddison said in 2008, “Our goal is to reach every child in Victoria with the transforming love of God. Through Christian Religious Education we aim to reach 80 per cent of primary school children by 2012.”
Scary stuff, especially when you consider many of the school chaplains are unqualified.
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