Papal visit spawns discussion on school choice

Monday, September 28, 2015
 | 
Bob Kellogg (OneNewsNow.com)

A public policy analyst fully endorses the call from Pope Francis for religious freedom, arguing it should include the right of parents to choose what kind of education their children receive.

America's one-size-fits-all public education system often discriminates against people in political minorities and people of faith. Neal McCluskey, associate director of the Cato Institute's Center for Educational Freedom, says any discussion of religious freedom should include one's ability to teach their children their religion at school.

McCluskey, Neal (Cato Institute)"But now we have a system in school that says that's not permissible," he tells OneNewsNow, "[that says] the schools have to have no religious component – which of course, then, you could certainly argue sort of elevates atheists or agnostics above religious people."

The former English teacher points out that public education in the past has been marred with battles between Protestants and Catholics and even among Protestants themselves concerning which version of the Bible to use.

"So I just thought the arrival of the pope should give us a good reason – because it's something that attracts a lot of attention – for people to stop and think Why is our education system the way it is?," he suggests. "Because those sort of religious battles were such high-profile and divisive events in our history."

Last year, Pope Francis opined during a meeting at the Vatican that parents have the right to determine how their child is educated.

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