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London Atheist Activist Group (informal community) Message Board 1. MAIN FORUM - (non-Islam) › OFSTED Want Better Religious Education In Schools...

OFSTED Want Better Religious Education In Schools...

A former member
Post #: 388
...and I agree with them. They say RE should "enable pupils to adopt an enquiring, critical and reflective approach to the study of religion." If that happened there is a good chance that many of them would start moving towards a rejection of religion.­
Group Organizer
London, GB
Post #: 830
I'm not altogether sure that religion should be a subject. I mean doesn't making it a subject in a way ratify religion as a legitimate thing, which I don't believe it is obviously? Why not have astrology classes as well while we're at it?
A former member
Post #: 389
There are people wandering around with religious ideas in their head that make them behave in certain ways, including many of the kids in school. It's real in that sense. Studying RE gives everyone an insight into these weird ideas. It doesn't have to validate them. Perhaps it could be an aspect of history?
user 3399980
London, GB
Post #: 445

Perhaps if they linked RE to literacy and debating and everyone actually had to read aloud the ridiculous segments from each text in front of the entire class. Then had a debate over the rights and wrongs of each text, along with research into who they think wrote the texts, when and for what purpose. Homework: find evidence that supports or disputes the text. Follow this with lessons on, logic and critical thinking.

Might also make sense if RE was only ever taught by atheists.
Group Organizer
London, GB
Post #: 831
Then the answer is to teach critical thinking to relieve people of religion - not to teach religion!

Religion would be a part of history just like slavery and human sacrifice, etc. Philosophy and theology belong there too.
Guildford, GB
Post #: 792
As they are teaching religion in schools, should we not demand equality for teaching science fiction too?
I think Star Wars and Star Trek provide far better lessons in morality than tales of that mysoginistic murdering b*st*rd in the sky.
A former member
Post #: 390
It would be nice to have a "why religion is ridiculous" class in school but no minister (even an atheist one) is going to propose it and parents would remove their brainwashed children anyway. The best that can be realistically hoped for, I believe, is a modicum of "Comparative Religion" which at the very least would give students in inkling of their colleagues' different beliefs and, in some cases, would bring about a questioning of what their parents are telling them.
A former member
Post #: 110
RE in schools is misused by religions to spread more marketing bullshit. We cannot trust schools to deliver a religious curriculum that is even close to unbiased. My girlfriends son is in a private school and gets regular verbal abuse by his teacher for being an atheist and questioning the Christian belief system. Her latest comment was that "children who are not taught Christian values do not have good up bringing's, do they "insert my girlfriends sons name"?". The RE teacher is the wife of the headmaster and any criticism is batted away without regard. The only option is to remove him from the school which my girlfriend has chosen to do after he completes his GSCE's.

To me this is a no brainer. Religion does not belong in schools. The next issue is then how do we stop parents brainwashing their children with indoctrination? Easy. Stop funding people who have ridiculous beliefs from having children!!!!!!!!
David S
Shepperton, GB
Post #: 139
My letter to the Observer.

Honest-to-God RE? If only …

(Church attacks Gove for neglect of RE teaching: Observer 06.10.13: J Doward, D Boffey and C Latimer)

Uh-oh! Here’s a fine kettle of fish! A religious institution which has an avowed mission to indoctrinate children complaining to a politician whose mandate comes from the amoral ballot-box about the standard of RE in schools? And we are talking RE here, not RI, aren’t we? Perhaps their priorities should come much further down the list, starting, say, with Ofsted’s stated aim to educate children about the world in which they find themselves with, one would hope, some degree of objectivity in the subject and not “because of the way it promotes respect and empathy” (see any recent news from Iraq or Syria, for instance). But don’t get me wrong, I’m fully in favour of high standards in the teaching profession and fully endorse the view that current RE is failing our children. But I am talking about teaching, not preaching; one has to wonder about just how many fully qualified RE teachers would find gainful employment in our ever-increasing number of faith schools.

Group Organizer
London, GB
Post #: 832
I don't see how teaching about religion does anything other than encourage it as it certainly gives it some sort of legitimacy by being in the curriculum - and I agree with Paul that no school can be trusted to deliver it in an even-handed way in any case.

I like Martyn's idea of sci-fi classes.

I once complained about a category in a quiz - TV Knowledge. I said that what they mean was TV trivia. TV knowledge would be understanding the cathode ray tube or plasma screen's intimate workings. Religion is also trivia and doesn't warrant being taught in schools, except where it is included in a history lesson, as Roger mentioned, and then would be referred to in the same way as fascism, which is after all exactly what it is.

Putting religion in history alone might actually make it just that. I am not for appeasing by teaching it in any form, which is where I assume we all imagine it will finish up anyway: untaught.
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