Louisiana mandates Ten Commandments display in public classrooms

Governor Jeff Landry signed the law amid Pride Month, sparking legal challenges.

Louisiana mandates Ten Commandments display in public classrooms
Brad Bowie/The Times-Picayune/The New Orleans Advocate via AP
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Louisiana has become the first state in the nation to require the display of the Ten Commandments in every public classroom. Republican Governor Jeff Landry signed the new law on Wednesday, coinciding with Pride Month, as some teachers across the country display left-leaning LGBT and transgender flags in their classrooms.

The passage of this law has ignited a heated debate between those who believe it violates the separation of church and state and those who argue that it is a necessary acknowledgment of the Ten Commandments' historical and cultural significance in American education, the Daily Wire reported. 

While left-wing organizations have vowed to challenge the law in court, proponents argue that displaying the Ten Commandments in classrooms is not solely a religious matter but also a significant part of state and national history, culture, and tradition.

Under the new law, the Ten Commandments must be posted in a large, easily readable font in every classroom at institutions receiving public funding. The posters must include the text of the Ten Commandments, along with a context statement titled "The History of the Ten Commandments in American Public Education."

The context statement highlights the prominent role of the Ten Commandments in American public education for nearly three centuries, citing examples such as The New England Primer, the first published American textbook used in public schools for over 150 years, and the McGuffey Readers, which sold more than 100 million copies and included the Ten Commandments.

Governor Landry praised the new law as part of the Republican-dominated state's "promise to bring drastic reform to our education system and bring common sense back to our classrooms."

“A strong education system leads to a strong economy and a strong state,” he said. “Our historic Dream Big Package puts the focus back on our kids, and allows Louisiana to follow in the footsteps of our neighbors in the South. I am thankful to the legislature for their commitment to making the education system in Louisiana one that students, parents, and teachers can all be proud of.”

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