At a Glance
A thumbnail sketch of Bible in the Schools.



  • To enrich the next generation with the wisdom and knowledge of the Bible by developing curriculum, training, and financial resources for elective, for-credit courses in Bible history, using the Bible as the text, taught in a controlled curriculum by trained and certified middle and high school teachers, employed by the Hamilton County Department of Education.
  • To make available to others through a comprehensive web site the Chattanooga model, to link Bible in the Schools to other organizations with similar goals and to consult with individuals, sponsorship groups or school districts across the nation.


  • Founded in 1922 as a gift to the community by Dr. J. Park McCallie. 
  • No cost to the public.
  • Teachers instructed to use only the language of the Bible and not to engage in denominational controversy.
  • If students ask doctrinal questions, they are referred to local clergy.
  • The appropriateness of teaching Bible in the public schools was brought before the Federal Court, and Judge Frank Wilson ruled that the program could continue under certain stipulations. Since his ruling, Bible has been offered as a social studies elective to students in high schools and middle schools.


  • Hired by Hamilton County Department of Education.
  • Employees of the Hamilton County Department of Education, whose salaries and benefits are reimbursed by Bible in the Schools.
  • Licensed and certified in the State of Tennessee.
  • Having completed 18 quarter hours (12 semester hours) of Bible courses as part of their college education.
  • Currently there are 15 Bible History teachers


  • Students represent various backgrounds and religions.
  • Over 70% of students will elect one or more of the Bible History courses at some time during their attendance at a school.
  • An estimated 4,000 students will elect a Bible History course during the 2014-2015 school year.


  • Bible History courses are offered in 19 middle and high schools in Hamilton County, Tennessee.
  • Taught only in schools where principals request a teacher and when private funding is available.
  • Students receive graduation credit for Bible History courses elected.
  • Five courses are offered: Genesis, Exodus, Life of Jesus, Old Testament Survey, and New Testament Survey.


  • Funded totally by voluntary gifts.
  • No public (tax) dollars used for payment of Bible teachers.
  • Approximate cost for each student to elect a Bible History course -- $300
  • Bible in the Schools is recognized by the IRS as a 501(c)3 organization. Contributions are tax-deductible.
  • Sources of Funds
    • Individuals and Businesses - 67%
    • Foundations - 26%
    • Churches - 7%


  • 2014-2015: $1,211,097

Public School Bible Study Committee
P.O. Box 4228 Chattanooga, TN 37405 (423) 648-0500