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The Littlest Missionaries: A New Christian Plot to Invade Public Schools

Exploiting a legal loophole, evangelicals are using children to spread their message in schools.

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Such mixing of church and school is sure to cause conflict and division – especially among parents who are not represented by the school-churches. It will burden public school officials who already have enough to deal with in terms of instruction and management, and are frankly not equipped to handle sectarian conflicts in school communities. But the groups involved in these efforts won't be deterred by that division. In fact, many of them welcome it. Many fundamentalists simply do not accept public schools as legitimate enterprises in the first place. They see public education as secular education, and therefore intrinsically hostile to their religion.

At their core, they do not accept that we live in a diverse society with a secular form of government. If their activities degrade support for the public schools or even destroy them, they will not be sorry to see them go.

 

Katherine Stewart is the author of "The Good News Club: The Christian Right’s Stealth Assault on America’s Children" (PublicAffairs). Visit her Web site or follow her on Twitter @kathsstewart.