TALLAHASSEE, Fla. - A watered-down school prayer bill inspired by a Florida Panhandle lawsuit has cleared the Florida House.
The bill that passed Thursday, April 22, 2010 would bar schools from infringing on the First Amendment freedoms of teachers, staff or students unless they sign a written waiver of those rights. As originally filed it would have allowed prayers at noncompulsory school activities including assemblies and sports events at the request of a majority of students.
The American Civil Liberties Union recently obtained a federal court-approved agreement from the Santa Rosa County School Board to stop religious activities. The bill goes to the Senate, where a similar measure (SB 1580) remains in committee.