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Religion and belief in state-funded schools

August 2015

Rabbi Dr Jonathan Romain MBEThere should be significant changes to the way that religion and belief is ‘negotiated’ in state-funded schools in Britain, a new report has claimed.

The report, called A new settlement: religion and belief in schools, was written by two organisers of the Westminster Faith Debates and calls for a measure of changes, including removing compulsory assemblies where there is an element of worship.

Other changes include making Religious Education (RE) a nationally determined subject, at all state-maintained schools, covering the broad range of religious and non-religious beliefs in society.

The report also recommends that the government seeks agreement from faith school sponsors so that if their schools provide instructional RE they provide it apart of the formal school day.

The report was welcomed by extreme liberal educational think-tank, the Accord Coalition for Inclusive Education. Its chairman, Rabbi Dr Jonathan Romain, said, ‘The idea of segregating children into different faith schools is becoming increasingly discredited and the call for faith schools to make provision for people outside of the faith living locally is to be welcomed. One simple way forward to changing to a more inclusive system would be to extend the rule governing free faith schools — a maximum of 50 per cent intake of pupils in any one faith — to all schools’.

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