Code No.: 606.5
RELIGION BASED EXCLUSION FROM A SCHOOL PROGRAM
Parents who wish to have their child excluded from a school program because of religious beliefs must
inform the superintendent. The board authorizes the administration to allow the exclusion if it is not
disruptive to the education program and it does not infringe on a compelling state or educational
interest. Further, the exclusion must not interfere with other school district operations. Students who
are allowed to be excluded from a program or activity which violates their religious beliefs are required
to do an alternate supervised activity or study.
In notifying the superintendent, the parents will abide by the following:
The notice is in writing;
The objection is based on religious beliefs;
The objection will state which activities or studies violate their religious beliefs;
The objection will state why these activities or studies violate their religious beliefs; and
The objection will state a proposed alternate activity or study.
The superintendent will have discretion to make this determination. The factors the superintendent will
consider when a student requests to be excluded from a program or activity because of religious beliefs
include, but are not limited to, staff available to supervise a student who wishes to be excluded, space to
house the student while the student is excluded, available superintendent-approved alternative course of
study or activity while the student is excluded, number of students who wish to be excluded, whether
allowing the exclusion places the school in a position of supporting a particular religion, and whether
the program or activity is required for promotion to the next grade level or for graduation.
Legal Reference: U.S. Const. amend. I.
Lee v. Weisman, 112 S.Ct. 2649 (1992).
Lemon v. Kurtzman, 403 U.S. 602 (1971).
Graham v. Central Community School District of Decatur County, 608 F.Supp.
531 (S.D. Iowa 1985).
Iowa Code §§ 256.11(6); 279.8 (2013).
Code No.: 606.5