The First Amendment's religious protections guarantee both the freedom to practice one's religion without restraint and the freedom from government establishment of a religion. The two main sides of the debate over prayer in public schools -- those who support school prayer and those who oppose religious content in public schools -- represent the tension between these two guarantees. In 1962, the U.S. Supreme Court ruled that public schools may not lead students in an official prayer at the start of each day, but that voluntary and non-disruptive prayer is protected under the Constitution.
In order to provide time and space for religious students who may want to pray, some states have implemented a "minute of silence" for students and faculty at the beginning of each school day. A few other states still have laws on the books that are unenforceable under the U.S. Constitution, including statutory prayers meant for recitation by the teacher.
See FindLaw's Religion at School section For additional articles related to school prayer, including School Prayer and the Pledge of Allegiance: Constitutionality.
Prayer in Idaho Public Schools: Overview
The state of Idaho provides no statutory guidance for school prayer, although many school districts mandate a regular minute of silence each morning. The Idaho Constitution echoes the religious protections provided by federal law.
|Applicable Code Section||No statutory provisions specifically addressing school prayer or mandated periods of silence.|
|Relevant State Law
||Art. 1 ,§ 4, Idaho Constitution: "The exercise and enjoyment of religious faith and worship shall forever be guaranteed... nor shall any preference be given by law to any religious denomination or mode of worship."|
|What is Allowed?||-|
Note: State laws are always subject to change at any time through the enactment of newly passed legislation or ballot initiatives, decisions from higher courts (state and federal), and other means. While we strive to ensure the accuracy of these pages, you may also want to contact an Idaho education law attorney or conduct your own legal research to verify the state law(s) you are researching.
Research the Law
Idaho Law and Prayer in Public Schools: Related Resources
Contact a qualified attorney.