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Religion in schools

The questionnaire from the working group reviewing religious observance in Scottish schools focused our attention on the definition of RO and how it can be best developed in our schools.

We believe religious observance should aim to be a learning experience and a focus for what goes on elsewhere in the school. All can contribute to experiences in religious observance, from which all can gain no matter what their per-sonal commitment or lifestance.

From these principles, pupils should be encouraged to reflect on and develop an awareness of spiritual development in themselves and others. But schools should acknowledge the unique place of Christianity in our society.

In doing so, contributions from pupils, staff, chaplains and members of the community should be well planned to provide a range of stimuli to use all the senses in approaching spiritual development. This will encourage pupils to explore questions about meaning and purpose, values and belief.

If we agree that spiritual development is about developing the whole person, should we not, as teachers, be carefully planning and identifying opportunities throughout the whole curriculum ?

Ken Fotheringham Association of Christian Teachers (Scotland) Honeyfield Road, Jedburgh

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