Consensus Documents

The Religious Freedom Center at the Newseum is one of the nation’s leading nonpartisan conveners of civic, advocacy and educational groups. We seek to engage in civil dialogue and, where possible, find common ground on public policies that serve the common good, as evidenced in the dozens of national organizations that have endorsed the following consensus documents published by the First Amendment Center, the forerunner to the current Religious Freedom Center.


The consensus document, What is the Truth About American Muslims? Questions and Answers was organized and produced by the Interfaith Alliance and the Religious Freedom Center and was endorsed by:

  • African American Ministers Leadership Council
  • Christian Church (Disciples of Christ)
  • Foundation for Ethnic Understanding
  • Friends Committee on National Legislation
  • Institute for Social Policy and Understanding
  • Islamic Networks Group
  • Islamic Society of North America
  • Muslim Public Affairs Council
  • National Religious Campaign Against Torture
  • New Evangelical Partnership for the Common Good
  • People for the American Way Foundation
  • Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.)
  • Queens Federation of Churches
  • Rabbis for Human Rights-North America
  • Reconstructionist Rabbinical College
  • Secular Coalition for America
  • Sikh American Legal Defense and Education Fund
  • Sikh Coalition
  • Sojourners
  • Southern Poverty Law Center
  • Unitarian Universalist Association of Congregations
  • United Church of Christ
  • United Methodist Church, General Board of Church and Society

The consensus document, Religious Liberty, Publication and the Future of American Democracy: A Statement of Principles, published by First Amendment Center was endorsed by the following groups:

  • American Association of School Administrators
  • American Center for Law and Justice
  • American Federation of Teachers
  • Anti-Defamation League
  • Association for Supervision and Curriculum Development
  • Carnegie Foundation for the Advancement of Teaching
  • Catholic League for Religious and Civil Rights
  • Central Conference of American Rabbis
  • Christian Coalition
  • Christian Educators Association International
  • Christian Legal Society
  • Coalition for the Community of Reason
  • Council on Islamic Education
  • The First Amendment Center
  • National Association of Elementary School Principals
  • National Association of Evangelicals
  • National Association of Secondary School Principals
  • National PTA
  • National Council of Churches of Christ in the U.S.A.
  • National Education Association
  • National School Boards Association
  • People for the American Way Foundation
  • Phi Delta Kappa
  • Union of American Hebrew Congregations

The consensus document, A Teacher’s Guide to Religion in Public Schools, was endorsed by the following organizations in 2008:

  • American Association of School Administrators
  • American Federation of Teachers
  • American Jewish Committee
  • American Jewish Congress
  • Anti-Defamation League
  • Association for Supervision and Curriculum Development
  • Baptist Joint Committee for Religious Liberty
  • Catholic League for Religious and Civil Rights
  • Christian Educators Association International
  • Christian Legal Society
  • Council on Islamic Education
  • First Amendment Center
  • National Association of Elementary School Principals
  • National Association of Evangelicals
  • National Association of Secondary School Principals
  • National Council of Churches of Christ in the U.S.A.
  • National Council for the Social Studies
  • National Education Association
  • National PTA
  • National School Boards Association
  • Union of American Hebrew Congregations
  • Union of Orthodox Jewish Congregations of America

The consensus document, The Equal Access Act: Questions and Answers, about religiously-affiliated student clubs in public schools, colleges and universities, was jointly sponsored by:

  • American Academy of Religion
  • American Association of School Administrators
  • American Federation of Teachers
  • American Jewish Committee
  • American Jewish Congress
  • Americans United Research Foundation
  • Association for Supervision and Curriculum Development
  • Baptist Joint Committee for Religious Liberty
  • Christian Legal Society
  • Dept. of Ed. of the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops
  • First Amendment Center
  • General Conference of Seventh-day Adventists
  • National Association of Secondary School Principals
  • National Association of Evangelicals
  • National Conference for Community and Justice
  • National Council of Churches of Christ in the USA
  • National Council for the Social Studies
  • National Education Association
  • National PTA
  • National School Boards Association

The consensus document, Religion in the Public School Curriculum: Questions and Answers, was sponsored jointly by:

  • American Academy of Religion
  • American Association of School Administrators
  • American Federation of Teachers
  • American Jewish Congress
  • Americans United Research Foundation
  • Association for Supervision and Curriculum Development
  • Baptist Joint Committee for Religious Liberty
  • Christian Legal Society
  • The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints
  • First Amendment Center
  • The Islamic Society of North America
  • National Association of Evangelicals
  • National Conference of Community and Justice
  • National Council of Churches of Christ in the USA
  • National Council for the Social Studies
  • National Education Association
  • National School Boards Association

The consensus statement, Religious Holidays in the Public Schools: Questions and Answers, was endorsed by:

  • American Academy of Religion
  • American Association of School Administrators
  • American Federation of Teachers
  • American Jewish Committee
  • American Jewish Congress
  • Americans United Research Foundation
  • Association for Supervision and Curriculum Development
  • Baptist Joint Committee on Public Affairs
  • Christian Legal Society
  • First Amendment Center
  • The Islamic Society of North America
  • National Association of Evangelicals
  • National Conference of Community and Justice
  • National Council of Churches of Christ in the USA
  • National Council for the Social Studies
  • National Education Association
  • National School Boards Association

The consensus statement, The Bible and Public Schools: A First Amendment Guide, was published by The Bible Literacy Project, Inc. and First Amendment Center and it was endorsed by the following organizations:

  • American Association of School Administrators
  • American Federation of Teachers
  • American Jewish Committee
  • American Jewish Congress
  • Anti-Defamation League
  • Association for Supervision and Curriculum Development
  • Baptist Joint Committee for Religious Liberty
  • Christian Educators Association International
  • Christian Legal Society
  • Council on Islamic Education
  • National Association of Evangelicals
  • National Association of Secondary School Principals
  • National Bible Association
  • National Council of Churches of Christ in the U.S.A.
  • National Council for the Social Studies
  • National Education Association
  • National School Boards Association
  • People for the American Way Foundation
  • Society of Biblical Literature
  • Union of American Hebrew Congregations

The consensus document, Public Schools and Religious Communities: A First Amendment Guide, was published jointly by the American Jewish Congress, the Christian Legal Society, and the First Amendment Center and endorsed by:

  • American Association of School Administrators
  • Association for Supervision and Curriculum Development
  • Baptist Joint Committee for Religious Liberty
  • Council on Islamic Education
  • National Association of Evangelicals
  • National Association of Elementary School Principals
  • National Association of Secondary School Principals
  • National Council of Churches of Christ in the U.S.A.
  • National PTA
  • National School Boards Association
  • Union of Orthodox Jewish Congregations of America
  • United States Catholic Conference

The process for dialogue recommended in Public Schools and Sexual Orientation Guide was endorsed by:

  • American Association of School Administrators
  • Association for Supervision and Curriculum Development (ASCD)
  • BridgeBuilders
  • Christian Educators Association International
  • First Amendment Center
  • Gay, Lesbian and Straight Education Network (GLSEN)

The consensus document, Harassment, Bullying and Free Expression: Guidelines for Free and Safe Public Schools, was jointly published by American Jewish Committee and the Religious Freedom Education Project of the First Amendment Center and endorsed by:

  • American Association of School Administrators
  • ASCD
  • Center for Religion and Public Affairs, Wake Forest University Divinity School
  • Christian Educators Association International
  • Christian Legal Society
  • Hindu American Foundation
  • Islamic Networks Group and its Affiliates
  • Islamic Society of North America
  • Muslim Public Affairs Council
  • National Association of Evangelicals
  • National Association of State Boards of Education
  • National Council for the Social Studies
  • National School Boards Association
  • Religion Action Center of Reform Judaism
  • Union of Orthodox Jewish Congregations of America

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