Florida Senate - 2017                          SENATOR AMENDMENT
       Bill No. SB 436
                              LEGISLATIVE ACTION                        
                    Senate             .             House              
                 Floor: WD/2R          .                                
             03/21/2017 12:20 PM       .                                

       Senator Rader moved the following:
    1         Senate Amendment (with title amendment)
    3         Delete everything after the enacting clause
    4  and insert:
    5         Section 1. Subsection (25) is added to section 1002.20,
    6  Florida Statutes, to read:
    7         1002.20 K-12 student and parent rights.—Parents of public
    8  school students must receive accurate and timely information
    9  regarding their child’s academic progress and must be informed
   10  of ways they can help their child to succeed in school. K-12
   11  students and their parents are afforded numerous statutory
   12  rights including, but not limited to, the following:
   13         (25) RELIGIOUS LIBERTIES.
   14         (a) Religious expression.A student may express his or her
   15  religious beliefs in coursework, artwork, and other written and
   16  oral assignments free from discrimination. A student’s homework
   17  and classroom assignments shall be evaluated, regardless of
   18  their religious content, based on expected academic standards
   19  relating to the course curriculum and requirements. A student
   20  may not be penalized or rewarded based on the religious content
   21  of his or her work if the coursework, artwork, or other written
   22  or oral assignments require a student’s viewpoint to be
   23  expressed.
   24         (b) Religious jewelry.A student may wear jewelry that
   25  displays a religious message or symbol in the same manner and to
   26  the same extent that secular types of jewelry that display
   27  messages or symbols are permitted to be worn.
   28         (c) Religious organization.A student may organize prayer
   29  groups, religious clubs, and other religious gatherings before,
   30  during, and after the school day in the same manner and to the
   31  same extent that a student is permitted to organize secular
   32  activities and groups. A religious group may be given access to
   33  the same school facilities for assembling as given to secular
   34  groups without discrimination based on the religious content of
   35  the group’s expression. A group that meets for prayer or other
   36  religious speech may advertise or announce its meetings in the
   37  same manner and to the same extent that a secular group may
   38  advertise or announce its meetings.
   40  The rights as provided in this subsection may be enforced under
   41  chapter 761.
   42         Section 2. Section 1002.205, Florida Statutes, is amended
   43  to read:
   44         1002.205 Guidelines on religious expression; distribution.
   45  The Department of Education shall each year distribute for
   46  informational purposes to all district school board members,
   47  district school superintendents, school principals, and teachers
   48  the entire guidelines on “Religious Expression in Public
   49  Schools” published by the United States Department of Education,
   50  as updated from time to time. In addition, a school district may
   51  not prevent school personnel from participating in religious
   52  activities on school grounds which are initiated by students at
   53  reasonable times before or after the school day if such
   54  activities are voluntary and do not conflict with the
   55  responsibilities or assignments of such personnel. The rights as
   56  provided in this section may be enforced under chapter 761.
   57         Section 3. This act shall take effect July 1, 2017.
   59  ================= T I T L E  A M E N D M E N T ================
   60  And the title is amended as follows:
   61         Delete everything before the enacting clause
   62  and insert:
   63                        A bill to be entitled                      
   64         An act relating to religious expression in public
   65         schools; amending s. 1002.20, F.S.; prohibiting
   66         penalty or reward for a student’s religious expression
   67         in coursework, artwork, or other specified
   68         assignments; authorizing a student to wear jewelry
   69         displaying religious messages or symbols; authorizing
   70         a student to organize prayer groups, religious clubs,
   71         and other religious gatherings; authorizing religious
   72         groups to have equal access to school facilities;
   73         authorizing religious groups to advertise or announce
   74         meetings in the same manner and to the same extent as
   75         secular groups; authorizing the enforcement of such
   76         student rights under the Religious Freedom Restoration
   77         Act of 1998; amending s. 1002.205, F.S.; prohibiting a
   78         school district from preventing school personnel from
   79         participating in voluntary, student-initiated
   80         religious activities on school grounds under specified
   81         circumstances; authorizing the enforcement of the
   82         right to such participation under the Religious
   83         Freedom Restoration Act of 1998; providing an
   84         effective date.