An RE curriculum would help bridge gulf over faith schools

9th January 2009 at 00:00

There is clearly a wide gulf between those passionately in favour of faith schools and those adamantly opposed to them (The TES Magazine, December 1926).

Accord tries to avoid the ideological divide that usually characterises the debate and instead concentrates on how to improve the way they operate.

One example that should appeal to all sides is our call for there to be a national curriculum for religious education (something many people do not realise does not exist), so that while pupils may be given extra classes in their own particular faith, they are also informed about other faiths and their culture.

In a Britain of many faiths and none, it is a matter of urgency to introduce an objective and binding syllabus covering all religions so that children do not grow up in ignorance of those who are different to them, or even with negative stereotypes.

With faith schools now firmly on the political agenda and obliged by the Government to promote social cohesion, we hope that it will turn our recommendation into legislation.

Rabbi Dr Jonathan Romain, Chair, Accord, London.

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