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Oklahoma orders biblical teachings in classrooms

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In a recent directive, Republican State Superintendent Ryan Walters ordered public schools in Oklahoma to integrate biblical teachings into lessons for students in grades five through 12. The Ten Commandments will also be required in the curriculum.

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“Every teacher, every classroom in the state will have a Bible,” Walters stated. “And they will be teaching from the Bible in the classroom.”

Walters clarified that teachers would not teach the Bible from a religious perspective, but rather from an historical context. For instance, historical figures like the pilgrims and Martin Luther King Jr. often quoted the Bible in their writings. Walters said teaching students excerpts from the Bible is essential to understanding the country’s history.

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The changes take effect immediately, however, some civil rights and religious groups are voicing criticism. The Oklahoma chapter of the Council on American-Islamic Relations condemned the directive, calling it a “clear violation of the Constitution’s Establishment Clause” and “a dangerous encroachment on the separation of church and state.”

This development follows a recent decision by the state’s high court, which ruled that a planned Catholic charter school — a first of its kind in the nation — is unconstitutional. Additionally, Louisiana became the first state to require the display of the Ten Commandments in every public school classroom, prompting the ACLU and other civil liberties groups to file a lawsuit against Louisiana and its governor.

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[LAUREN TAYLOR] 

CONSERVATIVES IN OKLAHOMA WANT TO INCORPORATE BIBLICAL TEACHINGS INTO THE CLASSROOM.

THE STATE’S REPUBLICAN STATE SUPERINTENDENT -RYAN WALTERS- ORDERED PUBLIC SCHOOLS TO INTEGRATE THE BIBLE’S TEACHINGS INTO LESSONS FOR STUDENTS GRADES FIVE THROUGH 12. 

THE TEN COMMANDMENTS WILL ALSO BE REQUIRED IN THE CURRICULUM.

(RYAN WALTERS / OKLAHOMA STATE SUPERINTENDENT)

“EVERY TEACHER, EVERY CLASSROOM IN THE STATE WILL HAVE A BIBLE IN THE CLASSROOM AND WILL BE TEACHING FROM THE BIBLE IN THE CLASSROOM.”

[LAUREN TAYLOR] 

WALTERS SAID THE TEACHERS WILL NOT TEACH THE BIBLE FROM A RELIGIOUS PERSPECTIVE BUT RATHER FROM AN HISTORICAL CONTEXT. 

FOR EXAMPLE: PILGRIMS AND MARTIN LUTHER KING JUNIOR QUOTED THE BIBLE IN THEIR WRITINGS. WALTERS SAID TEACHING STUDENTS EXCERPTS FROM THE BIBLE IS ESSENTIAL TO UNDERSTANDING OUR COUNTRY’S HISTORY.

THE NEW CHANGES GO INTO EFFECT IMMEDIATELY.

HOWEVER – CIVIL RIGHTS AND OTHER RELIGIOUS GROUPS ARE CRITICIZING THE MANDATE.

THE OKLAHOMA CHAPTER OF THE COUNCIL ON AMERICAN-ISLAMIC RELATIONS CONDEMNED THE DIRECTIVE – SAYING IT’S A “CLEAR VIOLATION OF THE CONSTITUTION’S ESTABLISHMENT CLAUSE” AND “A DANGEROUS ENCROACHMENT ON THE SEPARATION OF CHURCH AND STATE.” 

THE ORDER COMES JUST DAYS AFTER THE STATE’S HIGH COURT DECIDED A PLANNED CATHOLIC CHARTER SCHOOL – A FIRST OF ITS KIND IN THE NATION — IS UNCONSTITUTIONAL. 

IT ALSO COMES A WEEK AFTER THE STATE OF LOUISIANA BECAME THE FIRST IN THE COUNTRY TO REQUIRE THE TEN COMMANDMENTS TO BE DISPLAYED IN EVERY PUBLIC SCHOOL CLASSROOM.

THE ACLU ALONG WITH SEVERAL OTHER CIVIL LIBERTIES GROUPS FILED A LAWSUIT AGAINST LOUISIANA AND ITS GOVERNOR OVER THE TEN COMMANDMENTS LAW. 

FOR STRAIGHT ARROW NEWS, I’M LT…

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