Texas second-grader says teacher took away Bible during reading time

TEXAS — A second-grader in Texas told her family that her teacher took her Bible away during a “read to myself” session.

According to KHOU, the family is upset and reaching out for assistance after a teacher at Hamilton Elementary in Cypress allegedly told the girl not to bring the Bible back to school again.

The teacher reportedly said the Bible is inappropriate reading material.

Michael Berry, senior counsel with the Liberty Institute, told KHOU.com the family wants to remain anonymous, fearing retaliation.

He said the teacher’s alleged actions were questionable given that the school library contains copies of the Bible.

In a statement, the Cypress Fairbanks Independent School District said while it hasn’t confirmed the allegations, the Bible meets guidelines for books that students are allowed to read during independent reading sessions.

“Religious material, including the Bible, that meets these guidelines would be permissible for a classroom assignment and/or independent reading,” the statement read.

The school district is investigating.

Source: KHOU

41 comments

  • funnykid

    Maybe the little girl isn’t telling the truth. Given the fact that there is a school policy allowing the Bible, and there are Bibles in the school library, it’s likely that the teacher didn’t take away her Bible. Maybe she just doesn’t like the teacher and thinks she can get some attention this way. :)

    • sally jane

      THAT IS A DUMB STATEMENT if I’ve ever heard one !!!!!!!!!! Why would this child tell an out and out lie about this???? I don’t think it would have been told if the parents hadn’t already checked it out.Besides did you tell lies on your teacher at that age and were you smart enough to know to use the Bible in your lie so it could be on the news?????? DON’T Think So !!!!!

      • dewey

        hence the reason the parents put her up to this…..a 7 to 8 year old doesn’t have the comprehension to syllabic skills to read the bible…this is a made up story, just like the ones in your bible

  • GC

    If it is an “independent reading session” where the student’s bring their own material, the students should be able to read whatever they choose as long as it is legal for them to view it.

  • Flossyjane

    Absolutely ridiculous!!!! That’s what’s wrong with the world today…. Removing God from everything and everywhere….. And every one wonders why things are so bad now days…. Without God we are nothing.. That teacher should be ashamed of herself.

    • dewey

      it would seem that without us, doG would be nothing….we didn’t ask to be made, but by your story he/she made us apparently because he/she needed people to be afraid of him/her…..he needed to be worshiped, to be looked to….your doG sounds awful self-centered and insecure…..compounded by the fact you all say he’s jealous..

      • Jethro Bodink

        If God doesn’t exist why do you continue to put Him down? If God doesn’t exist why do you continue to comment about Him? If God doesn’t exist what do we who believe lose? Nothing. If He does exist what to we have to gain? Eternal life with Him. That will be so awesome!!! I choose to believe because God is alive. He is alive in me!!! Praise God!!!

      • Jethro's an idiot.

        jethro, take your beliefs and take it elsewhere. you’e a dang moro.n it’s called freedom of religion. (:

      • dewey

        @ JethRo is and idiot

        …..don’t respond like that….if we never talk about this logically, we will never dispel the myths and legends.

      • Jethro's an idiot.

        Obviously. Alright, Mr.Professor Preach-it-all. I’m just saying you don’t need to force god down someones throat. Not everyone has the same beliefs.

      • Jethro Bodink

        I’ve never forced God down anyone’s throat. All I am doing is standing up for God. That is what the Bible tells us to do. So many people call themselves Christians and don’t stand up for God. I have nothing against you or anyone else on this Earth. If you choose not to believe that is fine. It doesn’t mean I can’t do the opposite. If you want to call me names and Dewey wants to keep spelling Gods name backwards that is fine. The only one I have to answer for is myself.

      • dewey

        @JethRo…god isn’t his name, that’s a title….Yahweh will do for now, and that’s the thing that gets me the most….why does someone, who can blink you out of existence, need you to stand up for him. Brings me back to the codependency thing, were we created solely to praise him, again, this looks more like a “him-needing-us” situation.

        I do not believe in a mythical Jesus because there is some documentation of a historical Jesus….kinda like the biblical one, sans the magic. And lastly, what do you think became of the civilizations that came before Greek and Roman civilizations…they had their own god(s) and they came to pass…what is it about THIS particular system that makes it any different considering it’s relatively the new kid on the block.

        Of the 3 Abrhamic religions, I’d be more inclined to follow Judaism as it was the religion of the “messiah”….and I know I said lastly up there, but he did say that he came, “not to change the law”, yet there is an inherent change to the “law” through the introduction of a “supposed” new covenant…can’t get a single preacher to talk about these things for more than 5 minutes

      • Jethro Bodink

        Dewey, you choose not to believe so you condemn me for believing. Only one thing I can think of that would cause you to be like that towards me and that is satan. Why would you want to do satans work for him? I choose to believe, why does that make me a bad person? You know I did satans work for many years before God came into my life and my life is so much better with God than it was with satan. Everyone has a choice. Everyone’s choice will not be the same. I understand that and I can live how I want and you can live how you want. It doesn’t bother me how you live, the only one I have to answer for is myself.

  • diane

    It is not age appropriate reading! Students need to be reading at their reading level. Teachers are teaching compression skills and a second grader is not going to comprehend the bible! Every one is assuming the teacher is against the bible, but how many of you teach? I do – 3rd grade! If she had taken away Harry Potter or another higher level book there wouldn’t be this much of a stink. Good grief people need to back off!

    • whateverwhatever

      Diane,
      You and others keep saying that The Bible isn’t appropriate reading material for a second grader due to his/her inability to comprehend what he/she is reading. My question to you is, have you ever been in a Bible bookstore? There are many many many different versions of The Bible. By different versions I simply mean the simplicity or the difficulty of the words used. They make Bibles for children to be able to read. They tell the same stories, but use smaller words. The article does not specify what kind of Bible this child had at school.

    • its my business

      Diane,
      If this story is even true in its details, I wonder if the Bible was an age-appropriate one? Regardless, this age group reads from the Bible in Sunday class, interprets the readings and there ya’ go. I there are Bibles or Torahs or any other book in the school library, it is fair game for reading.
      Whether you believe in God or not …

  • Queen Bee

    The bible isn’t appropriate reading material for a second grader. I think the teacher probably told the child to find something appropriate and this whole thing has been blown way out of proportion. Religion is a personal choice. There is no reason for it to be in schools. Let the teachers teach.

    • Queen Bee

      Before I get vilified, let me explain that by “appropriate reading material” I meant age appropriate where the child can read and comprehend.

    • kay

      If it is independent reading time and students get to pick what they read then she should be able to read the Bible. Apparently religion is important to her family and she likes to read the Bible -great for her.k

  • gina

    I never wrote a comment on something i was reading but this pushed a button i seen that someone said we are taking GOD out of your kids schools an that is so true. So maybe if we put things back the way it use to be when i was a kid maybe schools would be a little better.i dont think this kid was making this up someone had posted on here this kid is in 2 nd grade she doesn’t know what hate even is well thats my take.

  • jEM (@canezjem40)

    Before comments keep being made about “age appropriate” reading material, let us remember it is not our call (nor the teacher’s) on what is appropriate for a child that is not ours. Maybe she has been raised with the teachings of God and she does understand the Bible. Who are we to say? I also agree that removing God from our schools has only hurt our society, not protected it. Those coming to America should respect our beliefs and ways of doing things as we would have to respect theirs if we chose to move to their country.

  • dewey

    what about those of us already here who do not believe in your doG and just how did this become about immigration……it isn’t age appropriate as I doubt she could read a whole page and understood what she was reading, not to mention the tales of r ape, mu rder, ince st, giving your deity petty human emotions, adultery…no child should be reading this….its my opinion that her parents more than likely put her up to this….contrary to prior belief, doG wasn’t always in school…and religion, more than anything else has hurt our society…they speak of unity, then everyone goes to their individual sect to worship

  • JT

    I keep reading this “Look what’s happened when we took God out of school” business and it makes me think. First, no one took God out of schools–prayer in schools is perfectly legal as long as it does not violate the Establishment Clause of the 1st Amendment. Further, if you want your children to attend a church school, send them to one. Further, educators generally deal in facts, so supernatural explanations of things do not satisfy that criteria. As for free reading time, sure–let them read what they want. But would we be having this argument if the student were reading the Koran? I strongly suspect that the parents put her up to this. And that’s the issue here–if you engage fundamentalists/evangelicals about this, you are “persecuting” them. It’s a brilliant rhetorical strategy, even if it is something of a logical fallacy. Finally, as for putting God back in everything and making the country greater, I ask that you look at the Middle East. At one time, this part of the world was the center of thought, philosophy, literature, and science. Enter: Religion. Now, it is poor, war-torn and broken. Religion creates far more problems than it ever fixes.

  • Victoria

    I am Atheist but I see no problem with this child reading the Bible during self-reading time. However I would have an issue if it were assigned reading because it is unfair to force one religion on a student in a public school over another because it targets the minority students. I know because I have been in that awkward situation before but I still stood firm even under the ridicule of the entire class filled with Christians. But if this child is reading to herself and not promoting the Bible in anyway to the other students in the classroom then she should be allowed to read it. I personally don’t believe in most of the contents but it is still an interesting book to read. I just feel that too many people hang on every word which has caused our world to slowing creep into the future.

  • Vasu Murti

    In 1995, a joint statement of current law regarding religion in public schools was published by a variety of religious and civil liberties organizations. This statement served as the basis for U.S. Department of Education guidelines intended to alleviate concerns about constitutional religious activities in schools. Here are some general rules concerning what school personnel and students may do:

    (1) Students have the right to pray or to discuss their religious views with their peers so long as they are not disruptive.

    (2) The history of religion and comparative religion are permissible school subjects so long as the approach is objective and serves a legitimate educational purpose.

    (3) Students may study the role of religion in the history of the United States.

    (4) Schools may discuss various religious groups’ beliefs about the origin of life on Earth in comparative religion or social studies classes.

    (5) Students may express their religious beliefs in the forms of reports, homework and artwork so long as such expression meets the other criteria of the assignment.

    (6) Religious or anti-religious remarks made in the ordinary course of classroom discussion or student presentations and that are germane are permissible, but students do not have the right to give sermons to a captive audience.

    (7) Students have the right to distribute religious literature to their classmates, subject to reasonable time, place and manner restrictions.

    (8) Students have the right to speak to, and attempt to persuade their peers about religious topics just as they do with regard to political topics.

    (9) Student religious clubs in secondary schools must be permitted to meet and to have equal access to campus media to announce their meetings.

    (10) Public schools may teach objectively about religious holidays and may celebrate the secular aspects of the holiday.

    (11) Students may wear religious messages on clothing, just as they may wear religious attire, such as yarmulkes, crosses, and head scarves.

    (12) Students may be released for religious instruction off school premises.

    (13) Students may read the Bible or other religious literature during their free time at school.

  • kayparrish18

    I think if it is students choice then she should be able to read it in school. What I am tired of is that all the people who don’t believe in God suddenly are able to take away the rights of those who do. i say you practice your beliefs and let me and others practice ours.

  • Mike Minot

    Had the reporter waited until more information was available(the school district had not even checked on the allegations yet! A report that is not complete…..

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