Australia is considering a ban on certain religious expressions in public schools, which would include talking about Jesus and handing out Christmas cards.
According to Christian Today, Queensland, Australia’s state education department recently conducted a review into religious instruction in public schools. The review led to proposals that public schools should maintain stricter policies regarding religious expression.
“While not explicitly prohibited by the (legislation), nor referenced in the Religious Instruction (RI) policy, the department expects schools to take appropriate action if aware that students participating in RI are evangelising to students who do not,” reads an advisory note from the education department.
“This could adversely affect the school’s ability to provide a safe, supportive and inclusive environment,” the note continues.
Some things upon which these new proposals could have a direct impact are a student’s ability to share the gospel with classmates or even a student’s permission to hand out Christmas cards.
The proposals have also received pushback. Senior Research Fellow Peter Kurti of the Center for Independent Studies said they constitute a “massive assault on freedom of speech and freedom of religion.”
“I don’t think people are on the whole affronted by the handing out of Christmas cards,” he added.