TENNESSEE, U.S., September 20, 2013 (Tennessean): Sumner County Schools students will no longer be allowed to take field trips to religious venues after the stepfather of a Hendersonville High School student accused the school of promoting Islam.
The issue surfaced when a couple of parents asked about a planned field trip to a mosque and a Hindu temple during the school's back-to-school night, according to parent Mike Conner. Conner said parents raised concerns about the trip because the 36-week world studies course was only going to be visiting the two religious venues.
For the past 10 years, Hendersonville High School has offered an honors world studies class in which students spend three weeks learning about Christianity, Judaism, Buddhism, Hindu and Islam.
Schools spokesman Jeremy Johnson said the class has visited religious venues in the past, including a Jewish synagogue, a Hindu temple and a mosque. No parents have complained in the past, he said.
Conner said he's OK with the students studying five religions, but it became a problem for him when only two venues were visited. Conner's stepdaughter did not take the trip but was allowed to do an alternative assignment. The school system said this week that all trips to religious venues are off.