Policy Details

6115 REGULATION Recognition of Religious Holidays

6115

Administrative Regulation

INSTRUCTION

Recognition of Religious Holidays

It is the intent of the Board of Education to be mindful of the diversity in the community and these regulations may be altered to reflect the changing composition of the community.

The recognition of holidays of different religions presents a natural and convenient opportunity for providing learning experiences to develop understanding, appreciation and respect for religious diversity.

  1. It is the expectation that parents will advise the school of a student's individual needs in the area of religious observances.
  1. The holidays to be recognized must be representative of the diverse religions of the world, not just Christianity and Judaism, and must be of historical and cultural significance to the religions they represent.
  1. All religions must be treated with equal dignity, in a context based upon the premise that the time and resources devoted to the recognition of religious holidays be a very small part of that devoted to the total educational program.
  1. All religions whose holidays are recognized must be afforded equal respect; none, as well as the right to disbelieve, shall be advanced or disparaged.
  1. Recognition of religious holidays must be a secular education experience directed solely to enhancing tolerance of and respect for religious diversity and must be developmentally and age-appropriate, and objective in presentation.
  1. All programs and materials used for recognizing religious holidays must support curriculum objectives.
  1. All programs and materials used must neither promote nor inhibit any ethnic, religious, or racial views.
  1. All programs and materials used for recognizing religious holidays must be sensitive to the needs of the various backgrounds of the students.
  1. All programs and materials used for recognizing religious holidays must be sensitive to the needs of the various backgrounds of the students.

  1. Performance in the arts that recognize religious holidays must be for artistic reasons, not religious. The design and total effect of a performance must adhere to this purpose. How this will be accomplished should be explained prior to the performance taking place.
  1. Musical concerts may include sacred music and traditional music of a religious holiday provided they are balanced with impositions that reflect the customs and folklore as well as festive and seasonal characteristics associated with the holiday. Religious music must not predominate although this may not be possible with major works.
  1. In any case, by written request to the Building Principal, parents have the right to have their children not participate in any program involving the recognition of religious holidays.

Federally Required Guidelines:

Students have the following rights pursuant to federal law:

To engage in private, non-disruptive activity for a reasonable time such as prayer or bible reading while at school;

Participation in before or after school events that have a religious content;

To study about religion when appropriate to the curriculum;

To produce written expressions of religious beliefs in homework, art work, and other assignments;

To distribute in a non-disruptive manner, subject to reasonable restrictions as to time, place and manner, religious literature;

To be excused for religious reasons from participation in school programs or activities;

To be granted release time to attend religious events;

To wear clothing that includes a non disruptive religious theme or message;

To be given access to school media to announce religious events in the same manner as other organizations; and

To be granted access to school facilities for religious activities in the same manner as other organizations.


Litchfield Board of Education
Regulation Adopted: 9/6/2009
Regulation Revised: 4/1/2015

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