Seminary release-time academic credit challenged, upheld by federal court

by | Jul. 06, 2012

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A federal appeals court ruled unanimously Friday that students in public schools can appropriately receive academic credit for released-time religious classes taught during school hours.

The decision from the Fourth Circuit Court of Appeals in Richmond, Va., upheld a South Carolina program that allows students to receive elective school credit for religious courses taken off-campus during school hours. The program was challenged in 2009 by a group called the Freedom from Religion Foundation, which claimed that the program is a violation of the establishment clause of the First Amendment to the U.S. Constitution ("Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion").

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