/ Crucifixes to stay in Polish schools
I can give you the perspective of a parent with a child in school in Poland.
First, I feel that church and state should be separate. My parents wanted me to receive a Catholic education so they sent me to private Catholic school and to catechism at church. I think those were the proper places for my religious instruction.
My daughter has just started "school". It is pre-school which starts from age 3. At the 1st parents/teachers meeting, we were informed that if we wanted our kids to attend Religia that we would have to sign them up. We didn't. Later on, we were asked by the Dyrektorka to write a declaration that we DO NOT want our child to attend. We did it. This week, we were told that the classroom teacher also needs an original declaration that we do not want our child to attend Religia. I think that they are trying to pressure us into allowing our child to attend because they have to do something with her during that lesson...or maybe they want to save her soul ;)
For those readers who may still be unaware, Religia in Polish schools is Catechism not Religions (of the world). Even though the teachers insist the lessons are very fun and general, it is still Catechism. At the first lesson they were taught the sign of the cross (the father, son, holy spirit, amen) and that good little boys and girls go to church.
It is true that Religia is optional. She does not have to go and she is not the only one who does not attend. In fact, a lot of kids do not attend. But someone said this is a majority/minority issue - I don't agree. This is a separation of church and state issue and even further a separate but equal issue. My daughter and the other children are given care during the Religia equal to the kids who attend Religia, but already the opt-outs are showing signs of feeling worse than the other kids. Some readers may not care, saying kids have to toughen up and learn about real life, but when it is your kid and it is about such a personal issue as religion, you may understand me a little better.
As a note, many parents who want their children to have religious instruction at school have decided not to send their children as the school could not provide any information about the person providing the instruction nor could they provide a program of instruction for the year.
There are not any crucifixes in the pre-school.