Public schools were radically secularized in the 1960s, largely due to Supreme Court cases prohibiting prayer and Bible reading. This made the public schools a less than ideal—and now hostile—place to educate Christian children.
However, this also made it hard for adult Christians to teach in the public schools.
In addition to the majority of Christians still sending their children to public schools, many Christians continue to teach there. They go through a college of education, get their state teaching license, and look for a job in the public schools.
Should Christians Teach in the Public Schools?
While I would strongly encourage all Christian parents to pull their children out of the public schools, there is a case for adult Christians remaining in the public schools as teachers. They want to be a positive influence in a dark place, and they are not in the same situation as children who are still in training and need a Christian education.
This is a noble desire. Yet I still believe it is a misguided one.
It is not that a Christian cannot teach in the public schools. Rather, it is that a Christian cannot teach well there.
This is because Christian public school teachers have their hands tied behind their back. They can still teach history, but they have to teach history the way the school tells them. And the way they tell them does not involve God and His Word.
Christ is Lord of every subject. And this means every subject should be taught and analyzed from a Christian perspective. It is much easier for a Christian to teach math from a religiously “neutral” view over a subject like history or science (where theology and creation come into play). But even then, God is the Author of math, and one of the lessons from math is that God has created an orderly (and amazing) universe.
“But Christian teachers can still promote their faith outside of the classroom!” is the typical response. This is true, and Christian public school teachers should seek to do so. However, after-school activities and extra-curricular activities are secondary to the work of a teacher. The primary task of the teacher is to teach his or her subject in the classroom.
Thus the best a Christian public school teacher can do is seek to talk about Christ after school, while he is confined to an atheistic curriculum for five or six hours per day during school. (And even if he can sneak some Christian or conservative viewpoints into class, this is at odds with the rest of the school’s curriculum.) How is that a fulfilling role for the Christian teacher?
The point is that Christian teachers are limited in their effectiveness in public schools. It is not that Christian teachers do no good in the public schools. Rather, it is that Christian teachers can be much more effective in Christian schools, where there is a unified Christian curriculum and the goal of education is to form godly men and women. (I realize some Christian schools do this better than others.)
It should also be stated that there is a great need for good Christian school teachers. It will take sacrifice for Christians to teach in the Christian schools (particularly less money). But it is a task that God commends—and will be rewarded both now and in the resurrection.
The Coming Purge of Christian Teachers
However, Christians may soon be left without a choice as to whether they will teach in the public schools. The rot at the core of the system is finally coming to fruition, as public schools are fully adopting the absurd logical outcomes of the sexual revolution.
Public schools have stepped up their efforts to purge Christians (and all sane-thinking people) from their teaching ranks. They are doing this primarily by pushing the LGBT agenda, with transgenderism being the latest fad.
As evidence of this, a Virginia public high school recently fired a Christian teacher for refusing to use male pronouns for a girl who “identified” as a boy. They are attempting to force teachers to participate in the sexual confusion of the age. It does not matter if a person cannot change his or her biological sex. It is all about what a person “identifies” as.
Of course, this is nonsense. And people who think they can create their own reality are in for a rude awakening. But so are Christians who teach in the public schools. They will be tempted to accept another demand by the cultural Marxists in order to keep their hefty government benefits negotiated by public sector unions.
In other words, Christian teachers will be tempted to give in to the madness so as to avoid having to work at a Christian school for less pay (which is often the primary reason Christian teachers work in the public schools in the first place).
But those with a backbone will say “no.” They will do what is right even in the face of persecution and backlash. Some public school districts will seek to resist the madness, but it is a losing battle when one examines the colleges of “education” that are training future public school teachers and administrators.
Those Christian teachers who refuse to bow the knee to the false gods of our day will be fired. But they—and the church—will be better for it.