Religion seems to be avoided in schools, educators are reluctant to raising the topic of religion in the classroom. Understandably they worry about offending students, or favoring a belief for that matter. Addressing religion in schools is essential to learning, and can adequately provide students with a diverse connection to the world. It is legal to discuss and teach students about religion in an unbiased and academically correct way. Therefore it is the educator’s choice whether to do so or not. Religion is an important factor in education for various reasons. Including religion in education will help decrease the amount of religiously motivated hate crimes. Along with making the student body more diverse, and enhancing the students education. Students have a First Amendment right to religious expression in school and should be able to exercise that right.
Religiously motivated hate crimes are on the rise, therefore to decrease this we should be teaching students about religion during school hours. Research shows that the percentage of hate crimes led by religion bias was about three times higher in 2012 than in 2004. Many of the violent hate crime leaders are school age. If educators encourage students to understand and respect people of different religious beliefs, it will immensely help lower the percentage of these hate crimes. Without teaching religion in schools some children feel that crime is acceptable, along with acting out because they aren’t taught any better.
Today, our student bodies are much more diverse. Which means that students are going to come across students of different race, culture, and religions. Students need to learn how to be able to accept these differences, and not be judgmental. To ensure that students of less familiar cultures and religious backgrounds feel included and accepted in their learning environment, teachers need to begin providing different types of opportunities for all of the students to share unique features about themselves. As their classmates become more educated about these differences, the likelihood of exclusivity and bullying will largely decrease.
Religious literacy is key to a well-rounded education; this will enhance the student’s education by teaching them more knowledge about different religions around the world. If students are going to function as global citizens, and be members of society; they will need to understand religion's impact on history, politics, society, and culture. Students should know basic religious facts and should be able to recognize the diversity that exists in each belief system that surrounds them. Students will also be encountering different types of people throughout their lives, and they are going to need to know how to deal with it and accept it.
Students have a First Amendment right to religious expression in school. With that being said, the U.S. Constitution contains two different types of clauses, known as the religion clauses. They are there to inform the relationship between religion and public schools. As government employees, public school teachers and administrators must follow these two clauses and are required to be neutral about religion while educating their students. Students have the right to believe in what they’d like to believe, and say what they want to say. Students are allowed to express how they feel, and they do indeed have the right to religious expression.
Students who are taught about religion seem to have a better grasp on reality. Allowing them to have a better concept about what is going on in the world around us dealing with different religions, cultures, and values. Along with being more open minded about other peoples beliefs, instead of just focusing on their own and acknowledging others. Religious education is easily ignored when it comes to teaching it in schools. People feel that religion does not need to be discussed. That it is better to just keep to themselves, in fear that it could offend someone and their own beliefs. When religion is brought up in education we seem to ignore it, and not appreciate it the way that we should. Religion gets merged in with citizenship and social studies, instead of talking about it separately. Students should be taught about religion. It can teach them valuable ways of thinking, which can help them throughout life. Religion is a key concept and helps broaden people’s knowledge about the world around us. There are so many different types of religions, which is why it is necessary for us to have an understanding and idea of the other religions that people are apart of and value.