On the 12th of December a story was covered in various venues concerning a lawsuit by the Association of Christian Schools International, Calvary Chapel Schools, and six ofÂ Calvary Chapel’s students, against the University of California.Â The suit is based onÂ what the plaintiffsÂ see as "viewpoint discrimination" because the University system has disallowed crediting of science courses that use religiously-based texts as the primary texts forÂ some courses that are not primarily religious.
- NPR:Â Â Christian Schools Sue U. Calif. System over ContentÂ (audio report)
- San Francisco Chronicle, San Francisco, California, Culture war pits UC vs. Christian way of teaching, Religious schools challenge admission standards in court
Biology and physics textbooks from Christian publishers were found wanting, as were three Calvary humanities courses.
- SacUnion.com, The Sacramento Union, Sacramento, California,Â Creed, Curriculum and California Schools
The suit was filed this summer on behalf of six students at Calvary Chapel Christian School in Murrieta, about 80 miles southeast of Los Angeles.
[Christopher Patti, UC legal counsel] said students can meet UC admission requirements by passing a SAT II subject test with about 550 points out of 800. Meanwhile, UC doesnâ€™t object to use of the Christian texts, provided theyâ€™re not the main course books, he said.
The homeschooling connection is that the books in question, from Bob Jones University, and A Beka, are used by many homeschooling parents.
- Economist.com, The Economist, 14 December 2005, A new front in the culture wars: The Lord’s word
For instance, when home-schooled children or students from private Christian schools apply to a public university, they are typically judged by their examination scoresâ€”and, typically, they are required to perform much better than their counterparts from the public schools.
Viewpoints-on-the-viewpoint issue are:
- The university has the right to set its admission standards
- There are other universities to which the students could apply
- If the standards are applied across-the-board, then no discimination exists
- Students from the schools test above average
- The university is publicly funded
I ‘checked around the Web’ to find out the status of the suitÂ because I haven’t seen any follow-up news reports.Â According to comments at a blog, the suitÂ is on hold (dismissed?)Â becauseÂ of the failure of one side to attach a proof of service.
The blog has a specific thread dedicated to the case:
- Dispatches from the Culture Wars:Â UC Lawsuit
In reading this material, I see similarities between the lawsuit against the University of California, and Section 522 of the National Defense Authorization Act concerning the recruitment and enlistment of homeschooled graduates into the military services.Â BothÂ Section 522 and the lawsuitÂ demand privilege outside what is required for all applicants.Â In the Section 522 case, it is removing the "alternative" status (Tier II instead of Tier I) for a homeschooled education.Â In the lawsuit against the University of California, it is allowing students at Christian schools to be admitted with 11 core hours instead of the 15 required of other applicants, and the use of alternative textbooks.
Same song, different verse.