Leave the teaching of religion to parents

4th August 2006 at 01:00
Why do some religious believers have such problems with the idea of shared values (or "so-called shared values" as Trevor Cooling describes them ("Humanist zealots, TES, July 21)?

Of course there are parents who do not subscribe to such values - respect for others and their property, kindness, honesty, co-operativeness and hard work - shared by most schools, teachers and indeed people of all faiths and none. Anti-social, aggressive and selfish people have children too, as do criminals - and usually send them to school.

But Mr Cooling is surely not suggesting that schools ought to embrace their values, or feel inhibited about holding inclusive assemblies that can offer their children a better set of aspirations and values than they find at home?

Marilyn Mason 142 Lower Ham Road Kingston upon Thames Surrey

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