Ky. Senate panel approves teaching Bible as social studies elective

FRANKFORT — One state senator cast a vote of "Amen" Thursday when the Senate Education Committee unanimously approved a bill to give public schools guidelines for teaching the Bible as an elective social studies course.

Another senator, Republican Elizabeth Tori of Elizabethtown, praised the Democratic sponsors of the bill, saying she believed "angels have sat down on your shoulders."

But another warned that the state must proceed carefully with the bill and said teachers in public schools must be sure to teach, not preach, the Bible to students if the measure becomes law.

A large crowd made up mostly of school students from various Kentucky counties attended the committee meeting in which Democratic Sens. David Boswell of Owensboro and Julian Carroll of Frankfort presented Senate Bill 142.

Boswell, primary sponsor of the measure, said it would let the state Department of Education come up with regulations to guide public schools as they "teach students knowledge of biblical content, characters, poetry and narratives that are prerequisites to understanding contemporary society and culture."

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