Christian conflict

28th August 2009 at 01:00

Rt Revd Dr John Saxbee, the Bishop of Lincoln, is obviously correct that education is not only the acquisition of knowledge but also the development of values and the attribution of meaning to experience through reflection on what one has learned - in short, the development of the whole child (Letters, August 21).

Some people might call this spiritual, but only a small minority of young people would think of this as a religious endeavour and even fewer that it is fostered by having compulsory Christian worship written into law.

For the vast majority of young people, it is clear that their "spiritual" life is non-religious. This important element should certainly be fed by formal education, and there are many of us ready to take part in a genuine discussion about how we change practice in our schools to make that happen. If Rt Revd Dr Saxbee wants to see that, too, he should persuade the Church of England to stop standing in the way of serious reform and work with others to effect change, rather than snipe at those who are actually having the debate.

Andrew Copson, Director of education, British Humanist Association.

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