September 17, 2010

Abington Schools, No Place for the Constitution

Yesterday I had a face-to-face meeting with the Assistant Superintendent of the Abington School district. The purpose of the meeting was to share a pocket Constitution with the administration so they could determine whether it was worthy of distribution to the students to celebrate today, Constitution Day.

Constitution Day and Citizenship Day were signed into law in 2004 by President Bush. Any school receiving federal funds is required by law to educate students about the importance of our founding document on this day.

Now, technically, it seems as though the Abington School District is following the letter of the law by, according to them, encouraging the individual schools and teachers to include the Constitution in their lesson plans today.

However, there is no district-wide effort to specifically focus the curriculum toward the greatest single document to guarantee liberty in human history.

The meeting was scheduled because I was interested in distributing these pocket Constitutions (with a copy of the Declaration of Independence) outside the High School this morning.

According to the District,
If you have pocket Constitutions that are printed without any affiliation to any political, commercial, or religious organization, we would be happy to review the document. If it conforms with Board policy, we would provide it to the schools for the students.
Problem. The pamphlets I was interested in distributing were produced by the Heritage Foundation, a non-profit, non-partisan conservative think tank. As far as I'm aware, they do not contribute to political campaigns, they do not endorse candidates, they simply research policy.

The School District informed me yesterday afternoon, pieces produced by Heritage violate the above-referenced policy.

So, the very school district who (24 hours prior to the event) reversed a long-standing board policy restricting politicking on school property to allow Michele Obama (Spring 2008) and then-candidate Senator Obama (Fall of '08) to hold rallies at Abington High School, do not think those events cross the threshold of allowable political affiliation.

However, a copy of the Declaration of Independence and the United States Constitution, produced by the Heritage Foundation, somehow does?

No comments: