|Abstract or Summary
- Objectives of the Study: On June 30, 1977, Oregon passed a law authorizing five hours
per week of released time for religious instruction on the high school
level. The purpose of this study was to seek answers to five general
questions: (1) What was the level of awareness of released-time programs?
(2) What level of interest existed for the establishment of
extended programs of released time for religious instruction? (3)
What might be the impact of extended released time on the public high
school? (4) What might be the impact of establishing extended released-
time programs on churches? (5) What impact might released-time
programs have on church-school interaction?
Research Procedures: Three groups selected from Polk and Marion counties were
administered a questionnaire which was developed for this research.
The three groups were: citizens, public high school teachers, and church leaders. Of the 1,978 questionnaires distributed, 830 useable
returns were received. This was a response rate of 43.4 percent.
Because of this low response rate, generalizations beyond the actual
respondents should be made with extreme care. The one-way analysis
of variance statistic (F test) was used to determine significant differences
among the responses of the three groups to the questionnaire.*
The Least Significant Difference (LSD) statistic was used to identify
where these differences occurred.
An analysis of variance according to selected demographic data
was also conducted. The demographic areas were: sex, age, marital
status, annual income, highest education level completed, personal
enrollment in released time programs, enrollment of children in released
time programs, religious preference, and extent of church
activity. For teachers, an analysis was conducted based on size of
faculty at the high school where they were teaching.
Conclusions: All five of the null hypotheses were rejected at the .05 level of
significance. There were significant differences among the three
groups for each of the five areas of this study. Specifically this study
found: 1. Teachers are less in favor of released time than are citizens
or church leaders.
2. Church leaders are more in favor of released time than are
teachers or citizens.
3. There was a general lack of awareness of released time
4. There was considerable interest expressed toward the implementation
of released time programs.
5. Males were more favorable toward released time programs
than were females.
6. Those with children currently enrolled in released time
programs were more favorable toward these programs than those who
did not have children currently enrolled in released time programs.
7. Latter-Day Saints were more favorable toward released
time programs than were other religious groups.
8. Respondents who were very active in their churches were
more favorable toward released time programs than were those who
were moderately active, slightly active, or inactive.
9. There were no differences in the responses of teachers
toward released time programs based on the size of the faculty where
* The .05 level was used as the level of significance.