A bill that the Texas Senate passed Thursday would require public schools in Texas to put the Ten Commandments in every classroom starting with the next school year. The bill that Sen. Phil King, R-Weatherford, wrote, Senate Bill 1515, is now going to the House to be looked at.
This is the latest time that Republicans in Texas have tried to bring religion into public schools. In 2021, Republican state Sen. Bryan Hughes from Mineola wrote a bill that became law. It said that schools had to put up “In God We Trust” signs that were given to them.
Ten Commandments Are Part Of American History
Earlier this month, King told a committee that the Ten Commandments are part of American history and that it’s time to teach them again in schools. He said that his bill could be passed because the U.S. Supreme Court stood with Joe Kennedy, a high school football coach in Washington state who was fired because he prayed at games. The court said that he was praying as a private person, not as a district worker.
“[The bill] will remind students all across Texas of the importance of the fundamental foundation of America,” King said during that hearing.
The Senate also gave final approval to Senate Bill 1396, which was written by Sen. Mayes Middleton, R-Galveston. This bill would let public and charter schools make a policy requiring every campus to set aside a time for students and workers to read the Bible or other religious texts and pray.
In a statement, Lt. Gov. Dan Patrick called both bills wins for religious freedom in Texas. Recently news surfaced about North Texas Lawyers Respond To Trump Arraignment. Click here to read.
“I believe that you cannot change the culture of the country until you change the culture of mankind,” he said. “Bringing the Ten Commandments and prayer back to our public schools will enable our students to become better Texans.”
Matt Krause, a former Texas state representative and lawyer for the First Liberty Institute, which represented the Washington coach, said that the Kennedy case was a win for religious freedom and that this bill would be safe. Take a look at an FMS Teacher Sows The Future Seeds.
“The Kennedy case for religious liberty was much like the Dobbs case was for the pro-life movement,” he said. “It was a fundamental shift.”
John Litzler, general counsel and director of public policy for the Texas Baptists Christian Life Commission, spoke against the bill at a committee hearing. He said that the organization is worried about taxpayer money being used to buy religious texts and that parents, not schools, should talk to their children about religion.
“I should have the right to introduce my daughter to the concepts of adultery and coveting one’s spouse,” Litzler said. “It shouldn’t be one of the first things she learns to read in her kindergarten classroom.”