2008.12.01 > For Immediate Release
contact: Wendy Townley - University Relations
phone: 402.554.2762 - email: firstname.lastname@example.org
Religion in Public Schools the Focus of Dec. 11 Workshops
Omaha - A leading First Amendment scholar is the featured speaker at a Dec. 11 program, hosted by the University of Nebraska at Omaha and Project Interfaith.
“Religious Liberty in the Public Schools,” featuring Dr. Charles Haynes, takes place Thursday, Dec. 11. The lunch-hour event will be held at the Thompson Alumni Center, while the 7 p.m. presentation happens at the Scott Conference Center, both on the UNO campus.
The first workshop, “Creating Policies, Procedures and Practices for Religious Liberty and Inclusive Schools,” is designed for school administrators, school board members, curriculum facilitators and educators. The workshop begins at 11:30 a.m. and costs $30 per person. The Thompson Alumni Center is at 6705 Dodge St. Registration is required for this luncheon workshop.
Educators, parents, students and community members will attend the second workshop, “Religious Liberty in the Public Schools and in the Public Square.” The event is free and open to the public and begins at 7 p.m. at the Scott Conference Center, 6450 Pine St.
To register for either workshop, send an email to email@example.com.
“One of the more interesting challenges facing school is balancing constitutional concerns regarding promoting religion and the ability of schools to respect religious differences of their students,” said B.J. Reed, dean of UNO’s College of Public Affairs and Community Service and a Project Interfaith board member. “This forum will help parents, teachers and community help think through many of these perspectives.”
Dr. Haynes will speak at both events on Dec. 11, where he will explore pressing religious liberty issues facing schools and public institutions, and will offer suggestions for how schools, public institutions and communities can be inclusive of religious diversity and honor religious liberty. Dr. Haynes talks will be followed a question and answer session.
The workshops will explore the policy issues that schools face in terms of religious diversity and liberty issues and will provide an opportunity for participants to share and discuss some of the needs and concerns that they are seeing in their districts and schools. Dr. Haynes also will highlight some practices and policies with which other districts have found success and will review some of the legal parameters connected to religious liberty and religion in the public schools.
Dr. Haynes is one of the country's leading scholars and experts on religious liberty and religion in American public life. He is best known for his work on First Amendment issues in the public schools. Over the past two decades, he has been the principal organizer and drafter of consensus guidelines on religious liberty in the schools, which has been endorsed by a broad range of religious and educational organizations. Haynes is the author/co-author of six books and his column, “Inside the First Amendment,” appears in newspapers nationwide.
He is the founding board member of the Character Education Partnership and serves on the steering committee of the Campaign for the Mission of Schools and the American Bar Association Advisory Commission on Public Education.
Founded in 2005, Project Interfaith serves as a leader and resource on interfaith and religious diversity issues. Project Interfaith works with religious and community groups, educators, corporations, and all members of the community to promote a deeper understanding of and respect for religious diversity. It offers innovative, community-building programs that educate and engage audiences on issues of faith, religion, identity, and interfaith relations. For more information, please visit the Project Interfaith website at www.projectinterfaithusa.org or http://www.projectinterfaith.blogspot.com/.
UNO is celebrating its 100th anniversary. This celebration recognizes the partnership among the City of Omaha, its citizens and UNO to build a vibrant and dynamic community. The centennial theme is “UNO: Central To Our City Since 1908.” This theme acknowledges the past contributions of UNO to the community and sets the stage for great things to come.
UNO, inaugurated in 1968, emerged from the Municipal University of Omaha, established in 1931, which grew out of the University of Omaha founded in 1908. For Centennial information, go to www.unomaha.edu/100/
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