Award Date


Degree Type


Degree Name

Master of Arts (MA)


Political Science

First Committee Member

Jerry Simich

Number of Pages



The problem of prayer in public schools is a divisive one that has grown out of a changing and confusing interpretation of the Establishment Clause with respect to school activities. Traditionally and historically, the United States has recognized public praise of God in a nonsectarian manner; however, this type of religious activity has been deemed unconstitutional in the school setting. The United States Supreme Court has also allowed public financial support of religion while vehemently disallowing symbolic religious support in public schools. The accomodationists on the Court has prevailed in most venues except school, where the separationists have managed to force a wedge between religious practice and the school setting. This varying interpretation of the Establishment Clause that is dependent on the time, place, and manner of government support has created a maze of incongruent, incomprehensible precedent that has denied the democratic nature of the American system of government. Some simple changes in policy toward state-endorsed religious activities could restore the American school to its traditional and democratic purpose in regards to religious education.


Discussion; Interpretation; Legal; Policy; Prayer; Problem; Schools

Controlled Subject

Political science; School management and organization; Religion; Law

File Format


File Size

3543.04 KB

Degree Grantor

University of Nevada, Las Vegas




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