A weekly Bible class offered in the public schools of Mercer County, West Virginia is a decades-old tradition. It’s offered during the school day – something that’s unheard of these days – but the program, which gives Bible teaching for 30 minutes a week in elementary school and 45 minutes a week in middle school, has widespread support. It isn’t mandatory but nearly every child attends. Parents and community members raise nearly $500,000 a year to pay for the program.
Now the Bible class is facing a legal challenge. Two residents with school-aged children say the program violates the First Amendment and the West Virginia Constitution. The lawsuit charges that the Bible class, “advances and endorses one religion, improperly entangles public schools in religious affairs, and violates the personal consciences of nonreligious and non-Christian parents and students,” according to a report in The Washington Post. Advocates of the class point out that it’s elective – no one is required to attend. READ MORE