Indiana House OKs bill that would allow students to pray aloud

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INDIANAPOLIS — A legislative proposal whose author says it would put prayer back in schools has cleared the Indiana House.

House Bill 1024 written by Democratic Rep. John Bartlett of Indianapolis directs school corporations to adopt policies allowing students to pray aloud at school events. He argues it would not mandate that students pray in school, but would affirm their right to do so.

Bill opponents question whether it’s needed because freedom of religion is already acknowledged in schools.

Some argue it could cause harm by identifying some students as irreligious if they choose not to participate.

The bill cleared the House 83-12 Monday and now moves to the Senate for consideration.

It also encourages high schools to offer classes on world religions and affirms students’ right to wear religious clothing or jewelry.

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