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The Bizarre 65-Year-Old Law That Bans Teachers From Wearing Religious Symbols — and How One Parent Is Using It Against an Educator


"They are there to learn about education, not to learn about religious points of view."

A Pennsylvania parent has filed an official complaint with a local school district over a Star of David necklace that is worn by a public school teacher.

The basis of the complaint is Act 14 (section 1112), a state law passed in 1949 that bars teachers from displaying religious symbols in the classroom, according to WHTM-TV.

That law reads, in part, "That no teacher in any public school shall wear in said school or while engaged in the performance of his duty as such teacher any dress, mark, emblem or insignia indicating the fact that such teacher is a member or adherent of any religious order, sect or denomination."

WHTM Harrisburg, Pa.

If a teacher is found to be in violation of this act, he or she will be "suspended from employment … for the term of one year."

If the individual continues violating Act 14, he or she could then become ineligible to teach at the institution where the infractions occurred.

School directors who allow such an infraction to go without punishment are also held liable and can be fined for not cracking down on religious garb and related symbols.

Using this law as the basis of his complaint, parent Ernest Perce contacted the district to complain about the teacher who works at East Pennsboro Middle School in Enola, Pennsylvania, according to WHTM-TV.

"They are there to learn about education, not to learn about religious points of view," Perce told the outlet. "If a child is subjected to a teacher where a symbol of Judaism is allowed to skirt the law, I believe that a Muslim should be allowed to cover her head as well as a Christian to cover her head like the Bible commands."

Read the text of the Act 14 (section 1112) below:

Pennsylvania General Assembly Pennsylvania General Assembly

Perce, who now says he's an Orthodox Christian, has made headlines in the past when he was formerly an outspoken atheist activist known for a posting an infamous slavery billboard and for being attacked by a Muslim man while dressed as a zombie Muhammad during a Halloween parade in 2011.

The former atheist activist told WHTM-TV that the school has said that it will not force the teacher to stop wearing the Star of David, citing a Pennsylvania court ruling that allowed a teacher's assistant to wear a cross.

Perce has reportedly removed his child from the classroom. It is unclear what will happen next or if the law would stand in the court of law.

(H/T: Inquisitr)


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