June 29, 2017
Preschoolers at a Christian school in Sweden are forbidden from praying before meals, saying ‘Amen,’ or even talking about the Bible.
According to This Is England, supervisors from the school district say participating in these acts of faith violates a law called “The Education Act,” regardless if they’re done at a Christian school.
The law states that any educational content containing confessional elements is inappropriate.
Now, instead of thanking God before meals, the preschoolers are instructed to thank the sun and the rain.
“As a confessional activity, we knew we could no longer have prayer time while children are at their desks where they learn, so we thought we would add grace as a nice feature during mealtimes,” the preschooler’s managers told reporters. “It’s sad because grace is a tradition.”
Teachers are also forbidden from hosting “Bible Snacktimes,” an activity in which teachers and students eat and talk about the Bible.
Preschools Strategy Planner Pian Rosell at Umeå Municipality explained that while faith elements are permitted at schools, they cannot play any part in educational activities.
However, she admits that lines are much more blurred at a preschool level.
“It isn’t as hard to distinguish between activities which are educational and ones which aren’t in elementary schools because teaching happens in class, whereas when it comes to kindergartens it can be difficult to tell,” she said.