There will be a public hearing in Room 727 of the Alabama Legislature, Wednesday concerning SB472 (reproduced below). The bill would authorize an elective course on the Bible and its influence on civilization in grades 9 to 12. The state textbook committee would be responsible for recommending the textbook to be used to the State Board of Education. A House Bill, HB 58, was previously defeated. The House bill named a specific textbook, "The Bible and Its Influence."
Several other issues will be taken up by the committee. Hearings start at 8:30 a.m.
SB472 By Senator Byrne RFD Education Rd 1 23-FEB-06
SYNOPSIS: Existing law provides for a core curriculum for students enrolled in public schools which includes specified elective courses. This bill would establish an elective public high school course for Grades 9 to 12, inclusive, on the Bible and its influence on civilization. The bill would specify that each local board of education would be granted the authority to offer the course within its jurisdiction. This bill would provide for textbook selection.
A BILL TO BE ENTITLED AN ACT Relating to public education; authorizing local boards of education to offer in public high schools Grades 9 to 12, inclusive, a course on the Bible and its influence on civilization and providing for textbook selection.
BE IT ENACTED BY THE LEGISLATURE OF ALABAMA:
Section 1. (a) Each local board of education may offer students in public high school Grades 9 to 12, inclusive, a course on the Bible and its influence on civilization. The offering shall be considered an elective course for purposes of partially fulfilling the required number of units for high school graduation.
(b)(1) Notwithstanding other provisions of Alabama law, until June 30, 2008, local boards of education may use state funds to purchase textbooks they conclude in their sole discretion are consistent with this section.
(2) The state textbook committee shall review all such textbooks and shall recommend adoption or rejection to the State Board of Education prior to the beginning of the 2008-09 fiscal year. As of the 2008-09 fiscal year, the only textbooks which may be used in the course provided for herein shall be those adopted pursuant to the state textbook adoption process.