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Blog:  Florida's Religious Expression In Public Schools law.
           An email of questions and comments to FL Senator Jeff Brandies regarding ...
              
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Sept 2, 2017
   

The Honorable Larry Ahern
State Representative, District # 66
8383 Seminole Boulevard, Suite B
Seminole, FL 33772
727-395-2512
 

cc:     Email (#3) to: The Honorable Senator Jeff Brandes


RE: Praise, honor and blessings to you and all of the signers of the 2017-74 Religious Expression in Public Schools Law.

Dear Honorable Larry Ahern:

        I am extremely happy that you represented me and my district for your involvement and support in the passage of this law.  I think it was overdue; but thankfully, now it's here and hopefully will be comprehensive and bullet proof.  I believe it will reverse a long and bad trend of religious discrimination in our schools from wasteful internal and external influences.

        I am very interested in the policy development process of the DOE and would like to know more about it.  I'm not much of a lobbyist so I'll just cut & paste a short introduction of the new law and all of my questions from the Hisways USA, Inc.'s August Newsletter into this email and hopefully receive a response in due time.  

        I will CC email the legal defenders mentioned in question 5 just in case they might be interested or already have developed a similar policy for one of their clients.   Some slight edits are in braces: [ ].  

Howdy Folks,

       This is our 2017 August eNewsLetter and ...

      This newsletter will describe some interesting laws that were passed by the FL legislature and became effective July 1, 2017.

        The first law is called 2017-74 Florida Student and School Personnel Religious Liberties Law.  This is a great law.  It is very important given these two items just received by email (8/5/17).
  • ... "more and more examples of overt anti-faith bigotry. For example, ...  lawyers were back in court defending a Christian group from blatant anti-Christian discrimination by an Indiana school district. The judge just issued a preliminary injunction in our favor, but that fight is far from over."
  • "And discrimination against Christians is on the rise!  Two recent studies revealed that attacks on religious liberty have risen by 76% and 133% in just the past few years!"
        I attempted to ask questions of the law's author; but after a brief non informative email cycle with his assistant, I realized that forthcoming info was going to be sparse or non existent.  So I'm going to itemize my questions in a list below; perhaps email it to my District ... [Represenatives], paste it into my Blog: FL's Religious Expression Law for a record, and report on the results as they become available in future newsletters.  
Paragraph 6 [of the new law] says the FL Dept of Ed. will produce a model policy for all FL. school districts.  My questions about the Dept of Ed Policy development process are:
  1. How does the Dept of Ed carry out the process of developing a model policy per paragraph (6) of 2017-74 Religious Expression in Public Schools Law ?
  2. Because this law involves freedom of expression, can the model policy be made strong i.e. bullet proof?  Or what will prevent or deter law suits by antagonists from forcing a case to the US Supreme Court?
  3. Will the DOE attorneys write it? 
  4. Since the FL States Attorney will be expected to defend it, will they be involved in [it's] development?
  5. Will legal law firms with massive religious liberty defense experience like:  Alliance Defending Freedom (ADF) or/and Liberty Counsel (lc.org), etc. be involved?  If they aren't invited to participate would it be appropriate for them to review and comment on the policy?  [Personally I would hope that they were out in front of this rather than called in after it's in court.]
  6. Will the Senate Education Committee have a chance to review and comment on the policy?
  7. What about including local in-school adjudication or/and school board reviews and/or appeals for adherence to the model policy?
  8. It seems appropriate to instruct teachers and administrators in the legalities of this liberty and perhaps providing Continuing Education Units (CEUs) for them to know their boundaries.  Gateways to Better Education has a Faith, Freedom and Public School Education Workshop for teachers and administrators.  Texas already allows 7 CEUs for their school personnel completing the Education Workshop.  [Can FL school personnel receive CEUs for such an important law?]
  9. Will there be a public hearing(s)?
  10. How would, or could, the 2017-74 Religious Expression in Public Schools Law apply to K-12.com [educators in] Florida's online schools?
 
See additional References and contact information on the bottom of the Blog page.

Sincerely yours,


Richard Klenk,
152 SW Monroe Circle N.
St. Petersburg, FL 33703
 
Chairman, Hisways USA, Inc.
727-521-6012 or Preferred: 727-526-4790

PS.  Please have your aid acknowledge receipt of this email.  Thanks.

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