What Released Time is all about…
PURPOSE – The purpose of Released Time Christian Education classes is to share God’s Word with the 4th and 5th grade boys and girls in the public schools and to assure them of His love and forgiveness through His Son Jesus Christ. Hundreds of students are enrolled annually in the classes in Orange. For many, this is their only Bible study.
Once a week 4th and 5th grade children attend a 40 minute Bible Study. Students are walked to a near-by Chapel-On-Wheels. During this time a variety of teaching methods including visuals, music, chalk talks and dramas are used. Each child is treated as a special and unique individual who is loved by God. Everyone is welcome.
UNDER THE LAW – The program has been available for the 4th and 5th grade students in the Orange Unified School District since February 1954. Under the Released Time Religious Education Law (California Education Code section 46014) local school boards may give permission to release students once a week for religious instruction during the school days. Released Time Christian Education classes are not held on minimum days.
Released Time Christian Education is offered at no cost to the students or school district. Each registered child receives his/her own copy of the Good News Bible without charge.
Classes, Curriculum, and Trained Teachers
CLASSES – Classes are 40 minutes long and held once a week. Classes are not conducted on minimum days. The classes are held in a “Chapel-On-Wheels” which is parked off the school property (usually at the curb). Several mobile chapels are moved to over a dozen different school locations each week.
The Released Time Christian Education schedule is set-up in cooperation with the school office. Registered students are released from the school for 40 minutes once a week. The time spent away from the classroom is treated as an excused absence. Many schools now use lunch recess to minimize time out of class.
CURRICULUM – A sequential Bible study is taught using the Good News Bible as the only text. The course alternates between the Old Testament one year and the New Testament the next. Church doctrine is not taught. Teachers strive to make the Bible relevant to the boys and girls of today, encouraging them to let God’s Word make a difference in their attitudes and actions. We have developed our own curriculum and use unique visuals, music, chalk talks, and drama to make the lessons appealing and meaningful.
Students are encouraged to memorize selected Scripture verses. The curriculum has been developed by master teachers and approved by the Released Time Christian Education (R.T.C.E.) Board, which consists of representatives from supporting churches in the community.
TRAINED TEACHERS – The Released Time teachers are Christians who have teaching experience and Bible training. The Program Director and teachers are hired with Board approval. The staff is paid according to the number of classes taught. Many hours of study and preparation time are donated each week.