Parents to take on government over religious studies GCSE


Source: The Guardian

A group of parents and their children are to go to court to challenge the government’s decision to exclude non-religious world views from the new religious studies GCSE.

Under the revised curriculum, which will be taught in schools from next September, pupils will be required to study two faiths in depth. But it does not allow for the in-depth study of a non-religious world view, such as humanism.

Three parents are taking the government to court to argue that such views should be taught on an equal footing with the seven faiths included in the curriculum. They say not to do so is discriminatory and not in keeping with the government’s obligations with regard to freedom of religion and belief.

Kate Bielby, one of the three parents leading the action, which is being supported by the British Humanist Association (BHA), said: “I completely recognise the importance of children learning about the different religions, especially in our increasingly diverse society.

“What I object to is the lack of parity between religious beliefs and non-religious world views in the school curriculum, which in the eyes of children may well lead to the belief that religion, in whatever form, has a monopoly on truth and on morality.”

She added: “This is not accurate, it reflects neither the views of the population nor the traditions of the country, and we shouldn’t be encouraging our children to believe it.”

Bielby, from Frome, Somerset, is bringing the case because she is concerned about the RS GCSE with regard to her 12-year-old daughter, Daisy, who will be sitting her exams in four years.

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Categories: Belief, Religion

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