Festival to celebrate diversity

The first national festival to celebrate RE and raise its profile will take place next year. The move, prompted by the Professional Council for Religious Education, has been welcomed by teachers and religious leaders.

Schools will be invited to run events in Celebrating RE - The National Religious Education Festival, which will be on October 6-10 1997.

National events will be held to celebrate religious diversity. Ideas include encouraging schools to twin with others in the UK or even Lebanon, Jerusalem and India, and exchanging a gift such as a book or quilt with their twin school. Children will also be encouraged to attend open days at places of worship to meet believers.

Other bodies, including inter-faith groups and Christian denominations, are also planning events.

Festival director Savita Ayling is sending a newsletter to schools this month. "This is a unique opportunity for schools, collects and faith communities to come together in celebration of all that is good in RE today. The festival is designed to encourage schools to stage events that are relevant to their local community and needs," she says.

Details: Savita Ayling, Celebrating RE - The National RE Festival, PO Box 12981, London E17 9UH. Tel: 0181 923 8383. Fax: 0181 923 8844 Lat Blaylock is executive officer for the Professional Council for RE

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