Agenda item

Commission on Religious Education


The Associate Adviser for Religious Education presented the report to those present, explaining the Commission on Religious Education had been established to review the legal, education, and policy frameworks for Religious Education.


The report was the remit of the commission to consider the nature, purposes, and scope of religious education, To identify the enabling factors that currently promote high quality RE, and the barriers that currently limit it. To identify what changes are needed to ensure the highest quality provision of RE and to ensure that recommendations focus on realistic and specific proposals aimed at both immediate and long-term implementation in the context of continuing educational reform.


The Associate Adviser for Religious Education referred SACRE members to appendix A of the report regarding the recommendations one being the name of the subject to be changed to Religion and Worldviews, and it should be reflected in all subsequent legislation and guidance.


SACRE Members disagreed with this recommendation and the Chair stated that if the name was going to be changed it should simply be religion and none religion otherwise it may exclude other religions and faith, which he felt was extremely disappointing that faith was not being included.  


SACRE Members agreed that it would be unacceptable for Religious Education to be removed as it enables people to hold a religion. They felt that worldview would be a decision made by individually.


SACRE Members felt that religious education should be taught to show awareness to children and give them a full understanding of other religions and worldview would never be defined and it distracts the objective of what the Committee is trying to make clear. The title worldview would be a broad title and they felt a new title should be considered and more research should be gathered from different religious groups.


The Chair asked if a criteria had been set up for non- religious groups, it was confirmed by The Associate Adviser for Religious Education that the non-religious groups in Thurrock were limited although Essex Community is very active.


SACRE Members highlighted that there should be a national requirement for teaching religious education in schools as all schools are expected to teach this subject. The Associate Adviser for Religious Education agreed it was very important for the academies to be clear on what is being taught. Every child should have full access to religious education.


The Associate Adviser for Religious Education agreed with Members that it should be consulted although there is no duty to consult. It was highlighted that the report referred to 9 individuals with education background are able to write the curriculum.


SACRE Members were pleased with recommendations 9 of the report on page 21. It was stated that the 2019 framework would be looked in to and progressed as there is 44% of schools KS3 are doing religious education and 3.6% are spending 1 and half hours on religious education.


There are concerns with the lack of awareness for other religions as it has increased to 55% of hate crime on religious people.


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