Bible Literacy in Schools

According to an article from, officials in 6 different states, including Virginia and Florida, are reviewing bills that will allow Bible study within the classrooms of public schools, permitting that these are taught not as religious classes but teaching the literary, cultural, and historical significance of the Bible. President Trump tweeted his support of this.

A little bit of background on this topic is that in 1869 the Cincinnati School Board ended scripture reading because of the Catholic opposition, as the schools were reading the Protestant version of the Bible. This was an attempt to regain the Catholic children back into the public schools they had left. In 1963 the Supreme Court ruled Bible study in public school unconstitutional, yet today, many prominent conservative Christian leaders are attempting to undo this and continue pushing Bible literacy in schools.

This is an interesting discussion, as the Bible, whether one is a believer or not, has had an undeniable trend on American literature and society. Hundreds of thousands of works of art have allusions to the Bible within, especially literature and American classic works that many high schoolers will be exposed to. Teaching it as a strict piece of literature could be beneficial to developing critical analysis and insight among students, within English class. However, the strong support from so many conservative leaders leads me to believe that the emphasis would be less on literary significance and more on teaching it as truth, which is against the nature of the bill. Our country has always had freedom of religion, but how can we say that we uphold this value if our public schools push specific religion?