Just begging for a court case
So where better to kick things off? Why, Odessa, of course!
ODESSA — Dozens of students have already signed up and district administrators are testing a pilot course as a West Texas school district prepares to offer a high school class on the Bible, officials said.
The Ector County Independent School District approved the elective course in December, despite opposition from critics who condemned the course as Christian proselytizing instead of education.
About 60 students from two high schools have signed up for the course, which will be offered next fall, district spokesman Mike Adkins said. The semester's schedule includes the class for each period of the day, but that could change depending on demand, he said.
Ian Roark, the district's social studies coordinator, is taking the online version of the course to test out the curriculum. He described the course as "non-devotional" with a focus on history and culture related to the Bible.
The district selected a course developed by North Carolina-based National Council on Bible Curriculum in Public Schools that uses the King James version of the Bible.
Critics said the selection showed favoritism toward Protestant Christianity.
Roark, who will oversee the implementation of the course, said students can use any version of the Bible they're comfortable with.
"Basically you are free to use whatever version of the Bible you and your family would like for you to use as a student," he said.
I definitely would like to know what this National Council on Bible Curriculum is all about, but the use of the King James version -- even if it is optional -- raises red flags all over the place. When I took religion courses in college, no professor would ever use the King James version, except to point out its flagrant distortions.