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Religious assemblies out

I agree strongly with Marj Adams in last week's issue that religious and moral education can only justify its place in the curriculum if it is seen within the context of the teaching of philosophy.

It is unprofessional for any teacher to use this curricular slot to proselytise for Christianity or any other belief system.

There has been little publicity in Scotland for the ruling of the House of Lords that pupils over 16 in all schools, including faith schools, have the right to opt out of religious assemblies. This was a judgment on a case brought under the Human Rights Act.

So senior Scottish school pupils do not need to ask their parents to remove them from religious observance; they can do it themselves by approaching their head, citing the Act. The more pupils do this, the more likely it is that secondary schools will abandon religious assemblies.

Fred Forrester

North Larches, Dunfermline

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