Rev. Grady Arnold pastors an SBC church in Texas and heads up an organization called GetTheKidsOut.org. Along with fellow Baptist David Scarbrough, Arnold has submitted a resolution that calls on the denomination's churches "to lovingly warn all of their members concerning the toxic spiritual nature of the government school system."
Arnold says the vast majority of Christian children (88 percent) who attend public schools leave the church once they graduate. "Southern Baptists have been playing the 'ostrich with its head in the sand' routine long enough," the Texas pastor laments. "The time is way overdue that we acknowledge the devastating effects public school is having on the faith of our children."
He notes that while some in the SBC leadership maintain that sending their children to public schools is equivalent to being "salt and light" in a secular environment, data gathered by the denomination indicates just the opposite is happening.
"The public school system is officially godless," Arnold tells Associated Press. "Jesus Christ is divorced from history, from science, from every subject. We want an integrated faith where you can quote the Bible, talk about the Bible freely in any class and any subject."
A similar resolution last year called for the immediate pullout of children from public schools. That proposal failed to pass. The Arnold-Scarbrough measure stops short of that and, instead, calls on churches to become aggressive and pro-active in
starting Christian schools and in supporting home schooling.
As I have discovered as I am reading Nancy Pearcey's excellent book Total Truth, the problem with our education system is not just that it omits God and the Bible from curriculum. It is that our public education system embraces a worldview that places no value on the absolute truth of the Bible. As a result, students leave school believing that truth is relative and a matter of personal judgement rather than an absolute, unchanging standard. It's about time that Christians wake up to the reality that our public schools are not the place to be sending our kids to learn. What public schools teach is not what any responsible Christian parent would want their children to learn.