Although there are some benefits to offering an *optional* comparative religion course in high school, I believe the risks of doing so outweigh the potential benefits. Finding impartial teachers, maintaining a balanced curriculum, and avoiding exploitation from predatory religious organizations, present too many challenges. David Zyngier's post gives a real world example of exactly the kind of abuses that can occur. Additionally, students under the age of 18 are not equipped to make discerning judgments about the information they receive in schools, it would be far too easy for an instructor to seed lectures with an assumptive overarching paradigmatic view that accepts religious beliefs as reality. Religion is a personal choice, and ought to be a private practice. Families who wish to impart such teachings to their children can seek religious instruction at the church, synagogue, temple, or mosque of their preference. There is no truly compelling reason to make religious teachings, even the most neutral and balanced ones, a responsibility of public institutions.
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