Proposed bill would give Indiana students designated moment to pray aloud

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INDIANAPOLIS — Indiana public school students could pray aloud in a public forum under a measure lawmakers are considering.

Democratic state Rep. John Bartlett says House Bill 1024 would give students an opportunity to pray in school, but not mandate that they do so. He envisions a designated moment for students to pray aloud according to their individual faith and believes prayer would benefit the student body.

Bill opponents question the need for such a proposal, saying students’ freedom of religion is already acknowledged in schools.

The measure also suggests high schools establish a course studying religions of the world, affirm students’ right to wear religious clothing or jewelry and ensure religious groups have equal access to school facilities.

A House panel heard testimony Monday before the hold the bill for a vote on Tuesday.

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