Time to Pass President Reagan’s Constitutional Amendment to Allow Prayer in Public Schools

bible pray prayer religionAuthor’s Note: The basic premise of this article is that allowing prayer in public schools can only help to alleviate the root causes of horrific mass school shootings.  One never knows the impact that prayer can have on a child who feels lost, depressed, suicidal, or otherwise suffers from some form of mental anguish.  President Reagan saw the need for prayer in public schools and proposed a Constitutional amendment to allow it.  Now is the time for such an amendment to be made part of the United States Constitution.

In the aftermath of the recent Florida mass shooting at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School, people are looking for solutions to once and for all prevent such shootings from ever occurring again in America’s public schools.  Among the proposed solutions are greater gun control, enhanced background checks, armed teachers or other armed personnel on school grounds, and so forth.  It can be argued that these proposals only deal with the symptoms of a deranged person intent on causing horrific death and suffering, while overlooking the root causes of why such a person commits such crimes.

In an effort to address the root causes for such actions, the Florida legislature overwhelmingly passed a bill (HB 839) to require all public schools in the state to post the state motto, “In God We Trust”, in a conspicuous place in each school.  The sponsor of the bill, Representative Kim Daniels, states that this bill is an effort to bring “light” into public schools, i. e., that God “is the light, and our schools need light in them like never before.”

In discussing the reintroduction of God back into the public school arena, it is well to realize that the great majority of Americans profess a belief in God or a universal spirit.  A June 2016 Gallup poll found that 89 percent of Americans polled answered “yes” to the question “Do you believe in God or a universal spirit?”

Given the above willingness of law makers to reintroduce mention of God in public schools and the knowledge that 89 percent of Americans believe in God (or a universal spirit), it is time to launch a serious effort to have President Reagan’s proposed amendment (or a similar amendment) made part of the Constitution, thus guaranteeing the right to offer prayer in the nation’s public schools and at other public institutions.  Below is the text of President Reagan’s proposed amendment:

”Nothing in this Constitution shall be construed to prohibit individual or group prayer in public schools or other public institutions.  No person shall be required by the United States or by any state to participate in prayer.”

Such an amendment would, in effect, overturn the Supreme Court’s 1962 decision that prohibits organized prayer in public schools.  For sure, such an amendment will encounter severe opposition, but this opposition represents only 10-15 percent of the American population.  It is time for the great majority of Americans to “rule” on putting prayer back in our public schools!


About the author: Paul Gardiner lives in Hoschton, Georgia, and is an avid Constitutionalist.

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3 years ago

May it be so. I would focus only on the right to profess Judea-Christian faith only. No Islam, wiccan, Buddism or otherwise.

3 years ago

“In discussing the reintroduction of God back into the public school arena, it is well to realize that the great majority of Americans profess a belief in God or a universal spirit. A June 2016 Gallup poll found that 89 percent of Americans polled answered “yes” to the question “Do you believe in God or a universal spirit?”

I”m pleased that such a large percentage of Americans “Believe in God or a universal spirit.” However, as much as prayer is needed in our schools today, putting the state in the business of leading or requiring prayers in public schools will not reduce the number of schools shootings in the least. It all lies with the spiritually wicked and/or psychologically sick heart and mind of the shooter, and the ease with which that person can obtain guns and ammunition.

Very wisely, the state doesn’t prohibit personal, silent prayer on the part of public school administrators, teachers and students. I was once a public school teacher and administrator, and me and my staff prayed plenty back then. This was a long time before there were ANY shootings in public schools. We mainly prayed for our students, and the strength and wisdom to provide them with what they needed to grow up and become honorable and productive citizens of their community.

Tina S
3 years ago

I believe strongly in the power of prayer. The prayer that happens at home is critical. I think the best place for Christian prayer to Jesus during the school week is before or after the school day in a club specifically for Christians. Many schools have Christian school clubs . My daughter’s high school has a “Youth for Christ Club”. They pray at club and get to know who the other Christians in the school are. It is free to anyone who wants to check it out on any week. I would not want a secular or other religion (Buddah, Wicca, Jehovah Witness etc ) teacher getting involved with prayer or influencing their religion with my kids during the school day. Teachers can also have their own before/after work bible studies with other teachers. To know your rights as a teacher go to http://www.ceai.org ( Christian Educators Association International) I am a lifetime member there. They have the same liability insurance that the nea teachers unions have, but it is Christian! Take care.

Myles Stanley
3 years ago

You would also open up ALL religions to have representatives at the school to aid in prayer. It should not be forced but should be allowed. No amendment is needed. Muslims pray 5 x a day and there are other religions that would need much more accomadation for their prayer rituals. Jamacian religion uses cannabis in its prayer ceremony. How badly do you want prayer in schools now?

P Gardiner
3 years ago

No Article V needed—go thru US House and Senate usual way to get proposed amendment

Myles Stanley
3 years ago

We do not need any more amendments to the Constitution and certainly not an Article 5 convention! The left will have a voice in an Article 5 convention and scrap the Constitution completely. This is what happened during the convention to re-write the Articles of Confederation. The Constitution allows for and even articulates the solutions for the amendments. It is the courts that have messed things up with Judicial activism. We need to work to change the rulings from the Supreme Court and enforce the current laws. A Convention is a disastorous idea and most Amendments are being proposed to weaken the Constitution.

Ken grimm
3 years ago

An excellent idea…prayer in school constitutional amendment should be proposed by the article 5 convention of states when that convention is convened..

Bill in TX
3 years ago

Prayer is the process by which an individual communes with God. An individual who has a spiritual relationship with God needs no constitutional amendment to be able to pray in school. The public school chose to exclude God and country in order not to offend the few. There has been increased growth in private schools and home schooling because of the public school failures. Correct the political bias against God within the public school system then changes for the better will take place. There is no doubt the broken family, the acceptance of any and all “values”, and free will abounds are contributors to a broken society. Let’s have chaplains and pastors on the school staff if you want to help fix the problem.

3 years ago
Reply to  Bill in TX

Bill, the big question here is, “Who gets to choose those chaplains and pastors?”

This would be a constitutional can of worms. The minority-status Muslims would have their lawyers before the school boards, screaming their heads off to have their mullahs in our public schools, teaching Christian and Jewish children and youth to pray to Allah, and through “Mohammed, the Prophet of Allah.” I wouldn’t want that–would you?

Brian B
3 years ago

I grew up in a family that believes in prayer and it’s unifying effect on the family. When I was small, my parents began having “family prayer” before the evening meal. They believed in the old saying: “the family that prays together stays together.”
This same concept has the power to unify schools by pulling the lost and the lonely and the angry together into a larger extended family of supportive and socially functioning friendships.
No child should ever become hopeless and despondent enough to want to kill himself or his classmates. When he hears prayers spoken in his behalf, he would know he is not alone.

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