Religious freedom in schools
Regarding the April 25 editorial titled ``Religious Freedom," I absolutely agree with your opinion that schools run by a religious group should respect students' right to choose their religion, especially with the point that the schools should offer alternative subjects or programs to those who do not want to attend their schools' religious classes and activities. However, I think we need a more fundamental solution than that.
Considering that Kang We-suck, the winner of the five-year-long battle, was the only one that fought against the school, we can assume that there are many other students who are obliged to follow school rules, even though they are against their will, because they are afraid of being punished or getting into trouble. This is preposterous as Korea is a democratic society where freedom of religion is considered to be a basic human right.
Nevertheless, when we consider that one of the fundamental purposes of private schools is to spread their religions, having their students believe in their religions is not unreasonable. Private religious schools also have a right to preserve their religions.
The problem is that students are assigned to schools irrespective of their will through a lottery system. I understand that it is hard to give all the students in the city a right to choose schools, but at least religious schools should be chosen by students who are willing to believe in that religion.
That way, schools will be able to come closer to reach their ultimate aims of their foundation and no students will be forced by anyone to follow any religion when they don't want to. This is the only win-win solution for this dispute.
Middle school teacher