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17729Parents complain Orthodoxy being imposed on children

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  • Bill Samsonoff
    Apr 5, 2013

      Parents complain Orthodoxy being imposed on children

      Portal-credo.ru, 3 April 2013

      Parents of pupils of school No. 15 of Miass, Cheliabinsk province, are
      seeking through the courts to cancel teaching there "Foundations of
      Orthodox culture," since, they say, this course is being imposed on the
      children, leaving no freedom of choice. RIA Novosti reports this on 3
      April, citing a representative of the Miass city court.

      In late March the director of the municipal government institution of
      the Miass city education district, Irina Nevraeva, stated that the
      principal of the local school No. 15 who is accused of "imposing
      Orthodoxy" will be dismissed from her position. At the same time
      Nevraeva emphasized that one should not connect the principal's
      dismissal with the parents' complaints about "imposing Orthodox lessons"
      in the school, and that the issue is "conflict resolution."

      Previously information had been circulated in news media that parents of
      pupils of this Miass school had filed a civil suit demanding that the
      right of choice be inserted in the curriculum: to let their children
      study Orthodox culture, the history of all religions, or secular ethics.
      They described the unhealthy atmosphere in the school and what their
      children had to face there. In particular, they described how pupils
      were acting up and misbehaving and their teachers are saying that "they
      have a black soul which should be brought to God," the Siberian News
      Agency reported.

      According to recen tinformation from RIA Novosti, a Live Journal blog
      writer, using the nickname "avmalgin," wrote on 2 April that religion is
      being forced on pupils in one of the schools of the city of Miass. "The
      whole school is decorated with icons and religious symbols, and in music
      classes the children sing only religious psalms and they do not know the
      simplest children's songs like 'The grasshopper sat in the grass,'" the
      blogger wrote. He also maintains that teachers walk about the school
      with bells to cast out demons, and the parents of all unbaptized
      children are forced to baptize them.

      "A lawsuit was filed in Miass city court by parents of pupils of the
      school who pointed out that they do not consent to the introduction into
      the curriculum of the second and third grades of the elective subject
      'Foundations of Orthodox culture.' They based their demands on the fact
      that pupils and parents do not have guarantees of the right of choice of
      one of the six modules of the course 'Foundations of religious cultures
      and secular ethics,'" the news agency's source said. She said that the
      plaintiffs request the introduction of corrections in the curriculum for
      2013 and substitution of the required subject "Foundations of Ortghodox
      culture" with "Foundations of secular ethics" or "Foundations of world
      religious cultures." A representative of the court noted that
      consideration of the lawsuit is scheduled for the middle of April.

      Meanwhile, the school administration has denied reports that religion is
      imposed on the pupils. "This is all untrue. There has been no Orthodoxy
      since last fall," a representative of the institution told RIA Novosti.
      (tr. by PDS, posted 3 April 2013

      Related article: "Local schools violate principles of religion course
      <http://www.stetson.edu/%7Epsteeves/relnews/1303a.html#12>," March 12,

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