Rules against Curriculum Censorship
three-judge panel of the second U.S.Circuit Court of Appeals ruled
against the efforts of three Catholic families to censor the curriculum
in the Bedford Central School District in Westchester County.
In the mid-nineties, the families sued the district alleging their
religious rights were violated by, among others, the DARE drug
education program. They also charged that the district’s lessons
about Aztec and Hindu cultures amounted to “veneration of pagan
gods” and therefore violated the separation of church and state.
In May 1999, a U.S. District Judge dismissed most of the complaints,
but did rule that certain individual teachers crossed the church-state
boundary by asking students to recite a creed to ‘Mother Earth’,
among other things. The most recent decision ruled that none of
the school district’s lessons violated the families’ religious
liberties or undermined the separation of church and state.
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