Students heading back to school in Tennessee in the coming weeks will be greeted by more than new teachers and old friends. They’ll also see “In God We Trust” displayed prominently in their schools.
A bill requiring the national motto to be displayed in a prominent place was signed into law in April, meaning the 2018-19 school year is the first one to be impacted by the new rule.
The law defines “prominent place” as a “school entry way, cafeteria, or common area where students are likely to see the national motto.” The phrase “may take the form of, but is not limited to, a mounted plaque or student artwork.”
The bill was sponsored by Republican Rep. Susan Lynn.
“Our national motto is on our money. It’s on our license plates. It’s part of our national anthem,” she told The Tennessean. “Our national motto and founding documents are the cornerstone of freedom and we should teach our children about these things.”
Reaction to the new law has been mixed. WATE-TV in Knoxville asked viewers on Facebook their thoughts.
Pebby Distefano, a parent, has mixed feelings.
“I believe in God,” Distefano said. “My daughter believes in God. However, there are also people who do not believe in God that attend the same school that my daughter does and I would not want their religions imposed on my beliefs, as well as I know my beliefs don't need to be imposed on them.”
Others, though, said it’s needed.
“Put God back in schools,” Ruby Daniels wrote.
Michael Foust is a freelance writer. Visit his blog, MichaelFoust.com
Publication Date: August 3, 2018
Photo Courtesy: Creatas/Facebook
Michael Foust has covered the intersection of faith and news for 20 years. His stories have appeared in Baptist Press, Christianity Today, The Christian Post, The Leaf-Chronicle, the Toronto Star and the Knoxville News-Sentinel.