Oklahoma Senate committee approves bill requiring 'In God We Trust' in public classrooms

The Supreme Court will soon use cases from Kentucky and Texas to consider the constitutionality of Ten Commandments displays on government property, addressing a church-state issue that has ignited controversy around the country. (Alex Wong/Getty)

OKLAHOMA CITY, Okla. — An Oklahoma State Senate committee has approved a bill that would require all public schools in the state to display the phrase "In God We Trust" in classrooms.

Senate Bill 1016 would require a poster or framed image with the phrase, along with the U.S. and Oklahoma flags, in classrooms and school libraries.

The bill says the flags and images could be donated or bought with school funding.

It was authored by Senator Wayne Shaw (R-Grove), a former missionary, pastor and adjunct professor at Oklahoma Wesleyan University in Bartlesville, and passed by the General Government Committee in a 6-4 vote last week. The Senate Appropriations Committee will now consider the bill.

Representative John Paul Jordan (R-Oklahoma City) co-authored the bill in the Oklahoma House of Representatives.

If the bill is passed by the legislature, then it will go into effect November 2018.

The bill's committee passage comes as state legislators continue to hash out a state budget. Students from a Green Country school held a walkout last week to protest millions of dollars in proposed education cuts.

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