public schools and theology

Discussion in 'General Baptist Discussions' started by menageriekeeper, Mar 14, 2006.

  1. menageriekeeper

    menageriekeeper
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    This is kind of long, so sorry in advance.

    My eight grader takes what is supposed to social studies/geography/current events from a man who is the associate pastor of a local Nazarene Church. This is public school, the man is bivocational.

    Since she began this class this teacher has brought up a variety of biblical issues. They have thier Proverb of the Day, from the book of Proverbs. He makes overtly Christian remarks in response to current event issues. And he uses the Bible to explain various historical event.

    All this I've taken note of, but haven't been to concerned about. I think he is walking a fine line between making this SS instead of Social Studies, but didn't think it was a good idea to really complain. After all done correctly, there is really nothing wrong with introducing biblical ideas into a classroom.

    Now it appears he has crossed the line into teaching theology(see my question here: http://www.baptistboard.com/ubb/ultimatebb.php/topic/3/3522.html

    I'm still not sure if I should complain, but am becoming increasingly concerned. I don't want my daughter being taught theology at this age (13) by anyone outside of my own denomination. Then again, this man is probably a Christian brother (but not a Baptist). I'd hate to make it appear that one Christian was attacking another.

    There is also the concern I have, that if I don't speak up and warn him that I'm concerned, that someone else will(and will file a lawsuit in doing so).

    Coming from where I do, I doubt this man has ever had anyone to question what he teaches in his classroom. This group of eigth graders is the odd group who tell their parents quite a bit. Most parents probably don't have a clue what the cirriculum even is.

    So, do I have a foundation for my concerns? Or should I just continue to answer the questions as they appear.
     
  2. gtbuzzarp

    gtbuzzarp
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    How would you feel if he were Muslim, an atheist, a Hindu, etc, and did the same sort of thing? Would that change your mind?
     
  3. menageriekeeper

    menageriekeeper
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    I'd be even more concerned than I am now about what she were being taught, but not as concerned for the teachers well being lawsuit wise.

    (I still probably wouldn't be the one bringing suit, but I would sitting in the classroom listening or sending a tape recorder daily, so I would know what he was teaching and very possibly I would be complaining, loudly)
     
  4. Convicted by the Spirit

    Convicted by the Spirit
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    I am honestly not sure why you are complaining. I must have missed something in the translation, but here is what I got.

    A man who is a pastor at a local Nazarene church is also a teacher at your child's school. During the class they talk about issues today and how they relate to the bible. As well they go over a proverb a day?

    It almost sounds as if you are offended that someone is talking about the bible in a public school setting. I find it funny because we always here complaints like this coming from the non believers.
     
  5. menageriekeeper

    menageriekeeper
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    You see, that is exactly my question. This is what I hear from unbelievers, but I'm a believer and I'm uncomfortable with what I'm hearing about coming from this classroom. This was before the crossover into theology.

    Do you want your child taught theology by someone not Baptist?

    Would you warn a Christian brother that he is about to fall over the edge inot what the law says shouldn't be taught in school by teachers?

    If as a Christian, I'm uncomfortable with this man teaching these things to my Christian child, how much more uncomfortable is a non-Christian going to be? Uncomfortable enough to file a lawsuit? If it can happen over "In God We Trust", it can certainly happen to a teacher crossing the line into possible proselytising(sp).
     
  6. Convicted by the Spirit

    Convicted by the Spirit
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    I think it is your job as a parent to train your child on the truth of the bible. If this man is speaking error then its your job to correct it within your child. If he is speaking the truth then God's word will not come back void. If you complain againist this man to the school board then you stop God's word being read. If this guy was from another baptist church then you would probably not have a problem with what he is doing.

    honestly, you can't control everything, but what you can control is how you train your child.
     
  7. gtbuzzarp

    gtbuzzarp
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    I mostly agree with Convicted.

    However, if this guy is not teaching social studies, geography, and current events like he is supposed to, and instead is having a Bible study time, then I think you have a legitimate complaint(Even if it is solid doctrine).

    The issue would then really be about him not teaching what he is supposed to, as opposed to the issue being him teaching the Bible. It would probably be hard for non-Christians to separate those 2 things, so I would still voice your concerns to the teacher first.

    Are any grades based on Bible interpretation?

    Are students who are not Christians demeaned?

    In regared to the question you linked to, I don't know how the resurrection relates to current events, etc.
     
  8. menageriekeeper

    menageriekeeper
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    This teacher demeans everyone! (one example is the dumb-dumb song he has the kids to sing if they don't perform to his expectations)

    Grades are based on actual geography and current events. They are supposed to also be learning ancient history, but I haven't seen an actual paper on that except for the project she's doing on the Dead Sea Scrolls. He's teaching what he's supposed to, plus.

    And evidently it being close to Easter makes the resurrection a current event(or maybe part of ancient history?).

    and who says I can't control everything!???? :eek: [​IMG] ;)
     
  9. Andy T.

    Andy T.
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    Why on Earth would you be concerned that this teacher might be teaching Christian theology (from a Nazarene perspective), when in most cases in public schools what is being taught is Secular Humanist theology? You should be thankful, and pray that the ACLU doesn't come a knockin'.
     
  10. Ransom

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    Why on Earth would you be concerned that this teacher might be teaching Christian theology (from a Nazarene perspective), when in most cases in public schools what is being taught is Secular Humanist theology?

    Because he is supposed to be teaching neither Christian theology (from a Nazarene perspectie), nor Secular Humanist theology, but geography? Just a thought.

    menageriekeeper: My suggestion would be to take your concerns about his curriculum to him personally, if that is possible. Since he is a brother, that seems better than complaining to the school board right off the bat.
     
  11. menageriekeeper

    menageriekeeper
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    Ransom gets it! I prefer that no theology whatsoever be taught and would complain even louder if he were teaching secular humanism.

    It is even okay for him to present both sides of an issue and foster discussion. And a theology discussion wouldn't be a bad thing if it were being used to explain certain events (ie why there were witch hunts in Salem). But to be teaching theology for the sake of theology is a bit different.

    I'm not sure where the school board idea has come from. That would certainly not be my first stop, even if I had clear evidence he were proseltizing. Teacher first, principal second, then the super, then the board. This is the correct way for things to be done and usually problems get fixed well before the school board meeting.
     

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