Florida lawmaker works to require religion elective in public high schools

Florida lawmaker works to require religion elective in public high schools

A Florida lawmaker is working to make bible study available in all public schools. Representative Kim Daniels filed this House Bill 195 on Wednesday. It would require all public high schools in Florida to offer a religion-related elective course.

Jennifer Ward has a daughter who attends Pace High School. She says she thinks the bill is a good idea.

"Look what happens in schools today, shootings. Maybe if there was something like that it would give kids something better to look at and get along better," Ward said.

House Bill 195 states the elective course would include education on the Bible, Hebrew Scriptures,

the Old Testament, and New Testament. The bill states it would allow an "objective study of religion."

"You can do it or not do it, but it's there for you," suggested Ward.

The bill states the course would have follow "all state and federal guidelines in maintaining religious neutrality." It also states the course should not favor, promote, or endorse any specific religion.

The head of Christ-centered LEAD Academy in Pace believes this is a good idea if taught objectively.

“I think it would help them understand relationships, how to work with people, how to speak to people, cooperate and teamwork, on and on because all that is there, it's in the bible,” Frank Lay said.

He also thinks requiring this course could be problematic.

"Most school systems are straped already, so as a reqirement that's another level of finances, hiring teachers, staffing," said Lay.

People are having mixed feelings about the bill and reacted on Twitter. Travis Allen tweeted that he believes in religious freedom, but believes studies like these belong in church. Todd Bryan believes as long as students have a choice, it shouldn't be a problem.

"I don't think it's controversial because it's be an elective. That would be your choice to do it. If you don't want to you don't have to," Bryan said.

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