Optional Bible learning dropped amid controversy

Students of a middle school in Chongqing municipality have lost their option to learn Biblical sayings amid a public debate on whether the “literature class” they are in runs athwart of education laws, the head of the school said on Wednesday.

“Our intention was good in the first place, aiming to diversify students’ knowledge and improve their characters by comparing Western and Eastern literatures”, said Deng Xiaopeng, the vice-principal of the Affiliate Middle School of Southwest China Normal University.

“But some thought the course was preaching religion to our students, who are teenagers and have not made up their own minds about values and the spiritual world.”

Deng said the school was told to eliminate the class to avoid exerting an unsolicited religious influence on the students.

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