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Suit challenges Bible instruction at public school

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A mother’s objection to Bible study being taught at her son’s public school has led her to file a lawsuit to stop the religious teaching.

The American Civil Liberties Union of Indiana filed the suit this week in the Northern District of Indiana, South Bend Division on behalf of mother S.P. Her son, D.G., is a first-grader at a public elementary school in Fairfield Community Schools in Elkhart County.

The school conducts a Bible study class for 20 minutes each Tuesday morning. S.P. signed a permission slip that allowed her son to opt-out of the class. Instead of receiving other educational instruction, D.G. was at first left unsupervised in a hallway with books while the class continued; he later was moved to the library during class.

S.P. claims having religious instruction at the public school violates the Establishment Clause of the First Amendment. In D.G., a minor child by his parent and next friend, S.P. v. Fairfield Community Schools; Superintendent, Fairfield Community Schools, No. 3:10-CV-415, S.P. is seeking declaratory and injunctive relief to prevent the religious instruction at the public school during regular school hours.
 

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