A new law in Louisiana requires all public schools to ensure “In God We Trust” signs have been placed in classrooms.
The law, HB8, went into effect on Tuesday after the state’s Governor, John Bel Edwards (D), signed it last month. Under the legislation, a display of “In God We Trust,” the national motto of the U.S., is mandated to be placed in every classroom of every building in every school district across the state.
The sign must be a poster or framed document at least 11 inches by 14 inches, The Daily Wire reported.
“The motto shall be the central focus of the poster or framed document and shall be printed in a large, easily readable font,” the law reads.
Although schools can purchase the signs with public money, people can also buy the displays for schools with donations.
The ACLU of Louisiana, however, denounced Louisiana’s new law.
“It’s our belief that parents, not school officials, should be responsible for shaping their children’s religious education,” an ACLU spokesperson said.
“Will it send a message that only students who believe in God are welcome in public spaces?” ACLU Louisiana advocacy strategist A’Niya Robinson asked.
Meanwhile, the bill’s author, state Representative Dodie Horton (R), argued that the legislation does not promote one particular religion.
“It doesn’t preach any particular religion at all, but it certainly does recognize a higher power,” Horton said.
“It’s a positive message in this world that throws so many negative things at our children,” she added.
Louisiana passed a smaller version of the law in 2018, requiring schools to have just one “In God We Trust” sign on display in public school buildings. The current law makes the signs more visible to students by requiring them to be placed in every classroom.
Additionally, the state passed another law on Tuesday calling for public high schools to offer an elective class on the Bible.