Sunday, August 27, 2023

Release Time for Religious Instruction

Do you know what this proposal is really all about? If you listened to speakers at the last two school board meetings (August 8 and August 22), you probably don't.

I'm not even sure all the board trustees understand it.

It is about time. That's all; time. It's not about religious instruction.

Many speakers during Public Participation praised the religious instruction that students can get. Some did not approve of releasing students from the school day to go to religious instruction.

It seems to me that it is not about religious instruction. It is about Release Time.

It is about approving a student's leaving the school campus during the school day to go off-campus for religious instruction.

State law (§59-1-460 (B)) reads, in part, "It is the responsibility of the student to make up any missed schoolwork."

Is that homework only? Is it classroom work only? Do that mean tutoring time or time with a teacher outside of the assigned classroom hour? What about Seat Time?

How long is the Release Time? Is it one hour? Or is it from the end of one class to the beginning of the class after the Release Time? 

How can a student get down the hallways, outside to transportation, to his place of religious study, back into transportation, back to the school entrance, through security, and into the classroom, seated, and back in the school "groove"?

Trustees should just say "No" and move on to other important school business. How many hours are trustees wasting on this? Two segments at board meetings, plus all the time for email and phone calls and stand-up visits.

Religious instruction is commendable. A student should do it on his own time, away from school. Period.