Needs and Settings
Public Education and Literacy
Click title for full information about the NCC Committee on Disabilities.
Click here for the 2007 Staff Training Devotions
here for information on the 2011 Outdoor Ministry Curriculum
for information on the 2010 Outdoor Ministry Curriculum
Click here for information on the 2009 Outdoor Ministry Curriculum
Click here for information on the 2008 Outdoor Ministry Curriculum
Click here for information on the 2007 Outdoor Ministry Curriculum
Click here for
information on the 2006 Outdoor Ministry Curriculum
Click here for
the 2006 Staff Training Devotions
Click here for the 2006 Outdoor Ministry Annual Report
Click here for the committee's 2005 annual report.
here for information on the 2005 Outdoor Ministry Curriculum
here for 2004 resources for leaders in Outdoor Ministries
here for information about the 2004 "Join the Party!" Outdoor Ministries
Click for Writer Information, New Earth: Christian Resources for the Outdoors
Click here to download the "Committee on Outdoor Ministries Theological Mission
(Requires Adobe Acrobat Reader, click logo to download.)
Formerly known as
the Basic Education and Literacy Working Group, the committee's major focus is
now public education and the need for the churches to recover their history of
support for public schools and the children and teachers in them. The committee
seeks to reinforce the importance of the separation of church and state, both
for the churches and the schools. It works to strengthen support for
public education in our faith communities and to encourage active, appropriate
involvement in public schools by congregations.
Committee on Public Education and Literacy has created a new resource for this
2012 election year.
Repairing the Breach: A Just Agenda for Public School Reform—Questions for
Federal & State Candidates in this 2012 Election Year
provides background on public education policy from the perspective of faith and
justice and then on the second page, questions you may carry to candidates’
night or another occasion when you have an opportunity to talk with candidates
for Congress, president, governor, or state legislature. Choose the one question
you feel called to ask, or let different members of your group ask different
questions. The first page provides study materials to help you prepare.
Additionally, the resources below, including our short videos, will help you or
your justice committee or women’s group or adult education class explore these
concerns in more depth.
video conversations bring the voices of Dr. John Jackson
and Dr. Diane Ravitch to explore serious concerns raised in the
Pastoral Letter by
the National Council of Churches Governing Board
about today’s federal public education policy.
videos seek to stimulate conversation and action on the need for quality
education for all children.
Pastoral Letter on Federal Policy in Public Education: An Ecumenical Call
Gaps in Public Education Must be Closed
to Learn in Public Education: An Alternative Vision
Questions to Consider About Charter Schools
Moral Concerns" in the No Child Left Behind Act.
We encourage you to download and use this 40-day study
Journey to Opportunity, Journey to Learn: A Reflection
on Public Education in God’s World Today,
for personal devotion and/or as the basis for group study, in a faithful
reflection group, an adult education class, a social action committee, a
commission on Christian education, a women’s group, or an intergenerational
church school class.
May 2008: The Committee on Public Education and Literacy provides a
for congregations to discuss Linda Perlstein's
TESTED, a shocking new book that
exposes problems with federal test-and-punish philosophy of education.
► The Committee on
Public Education and Literacy Resources has released a new brochure on the
teaching of evolution in science classes in public schools. Download it
A litany for education and schools
13, 2009, Conference frames agenda for Transforming
No Child Left Behind
Click here for the report of the March 9, 2007, 'Fixing No Child Left
as the Basic Education and Literacy Working Group, the committee's major
focus is now public education and the need for the churches to recover their
history of support for public schools and the children and teachers in them.
The committee seeks to reinforce the importance of the separation of church
and state, both for the churches and the schools. It works to
strengthen support for public education in our faith communities and to
encourage active, appropriate involvement in public schools by
each child is made in God's image, we believe that each child deserves the
best education available. This is achieved, we are convinced, through
quality public schools. The Committee's primary focus is supporting quality
public education. At a time when public education is under
attack from a variety of sources for a variety of reasons, our mission is to
call the member communions of the National Council of Churches and our
nation as well to remember first and foremost our children, all our
We believe our
children deserve the opportunity to explore and develop their God-given
abilities. Public education provides the best opportunity for most
children. While we recognize the role of private schools in the
educational enterprise, we strongly believe the focus of our efforts needs
to be placed on public schools. People of faith can play an
important role in support of public education and in the life of local
schools. We believe this role must be informed by the constitutional
understanding of the separation of church and state, an understanding that
protects the integrity of both our schools and our faith communities.
Guided by the Policy Statement
"The Churches and the Public Schools at the close of the Twentieth Century",
we work in a variety of capacities.
meetings representatives from denominations and other private and public
entities gather to share information and strategies related to support of
We collaborate with partners from the church and government. Currently we
are collaborating with several agencies on a pilot project in Pennsylvania,
"Quality Public Education for all our Children." We hope this pilot
project will provide a model for church-school partnership that can be used
in other states. The Committee has a close working relationship with the
U.S. Dept. of Education and anticipates co-sponsoring a national conference
for those who are working to establish faith community-public school
sharing resources with member denominations:
has produced annual "Honor education Sunday" resources. We share these
resources with member denominations. One goal for the future is to learn
what new resources can be developed to help congregations understand public
education issues and work appropriately with neighborhood schools.
role of this committee is to encourage conversation, dialogue and new
strategies in support of public education within the NCC and our
constituencies. In 1999, we held two dialogues on the proposed NCC
statement on public education. At the NCC's 50th Anniversary General
Assembly, we sponsored a day-long forum:
Public Education at the Edge of a New Millennium.
► See the General
The Churches and Public School,
adopted November 5, 2003, in Jackson, Miss.