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Catholic school and Christmas jumper day

(32 Posts)
ephemeralfairy Sun 17-Dec-17 19:44:06

Hi. This is a bit of an issue I've been turning over in my mind the last few days.
I work for a council. I don't work in schools but my job brings me into contact with school children of all ages quite a lot.
I should say that I don't have children and have no plans to have any.
I've recently found out from the parent of a pupil at one of the state Catholic schools in our district that the money collected for Christmas jumper day is going to a pro-life charity. This really, really does not sit right with me. I know that it reflects Catholic values but it just seems so extreme and divisive.
Why not just give the money to a 'neutral' charity like Save The Children or if it has to be something Catholic then what's wrong with CAFOD? Why do something that will alienate and anger a lot of people, including surely some parents/pupils??
I'm not even sure what a pro-life charity actually does other than abuse vulnerable women but that's beside the point...
I don't know what to do. I really really want to make a complaint but I have no idea how to word it or where to address it.
I'm also not sure what implications there would be because I'm an employee of the council!!
Or as a non-parent and non-Catholic should I just mind my own business??
I should add that I am in the west of Scotland so there are sectarian issues as well.
Please help me wise folk of Mumsnet! What would you do??

cardibach Sun 17-Dec-17 19:51:42

I think pro-life charities are abhorrent,but 8f the pupils knew where the money was going I not sure what can be done.

ephemeralfairy Sun 17-Dec-17 19:55:23

I'm not sure to be honest. I'm pretty sure they didn't have a choice as to what charity they'd be supporting. I don't know if parents were consulted either. I need to find out a bit more about it I think.

7to25 Sun 17-Dec-17 19:59:40

Is it the Cardinal Winning pro life initiative? It seems to be practical help for crisis pregnancies. Open to all, so I don't know what the sectarian issues are.

ephemeralfairy Sun 17-Dec-17 20:20:27

By sectarian issues I just mean that anything to do with religion is more charged and sensitive than it would be elsewhere in the country. Perhaps not the right choice of phrase on my behalf.

SadTrombone Sun 17-Dec-17 20:21:25

Possibly SPUC. I went to a Catholic school and we had a compulsory 3 hour indoctrination session from them (this was 10 years or so ago).
It was horrendous. Think graphic pictures and scientifically inaccurate cute little pink plastic foetuses.

septembersapphire Sun 17-Dec-17 20:22:41

I would be less than thrilled, to be honest. The pupils probably won’t care either which way but that’s why it seems a tad manipulative.

missyB1 Sun 17-Dec-17 20:24:27

I presume the school told the parents where the money was going, so after that it’s up to them really.

Piggywaspushed Sun 17-Dec-17 20:27:23

Christmas Jumper Day is a specific Save The Children event so it is wrong of the school to hijack it and impose a different 'cause'. Bit dissembling...

Soozikinzii Sun 17-Dec-17 20:32:24

Our school do Xmas jumper day for save the children fund as the previous poster said I think they invented it

grasspigeons Sun 17-Dec-17 20:36:27

How I feel about it would depend on how the school described it
If they said something like 'its Christmas jumper day which nationally is for Save the Children, but we want to do the same event on the same day for this pro life charity instead' then I guess parents have had a chance to make some sort of protest of their own if they disagree or not take part.

If they said its Christmas jumper day, bring in a pound and didn't really specify it wasn't for Save The Children then that's very naughty as even in a catholic school there will be people who don't want to donate to pro-life charities and would presume it was going to Save the Children.

But I don't really think you can complain - its not really anything to do with you.

Viviennemary Sun 17-Dec-17 20:39:27

No I do not think you should make a complaint. So I can't see why you think that in this particular case your views should be taken into consideration. Catholic values are against abortion. And pro-life groups do help people that don't want abortions but have no-one to turn to for support. If you're not in favour then fine don't donate.

MiaowTheCat Sun 17-Dec-17 20:39:31

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

Thedietstartsnow Sun 17-Dec-17 20:39:43

My daughter school did this every year...because they didn't support children in need as it gave money to charities that supported abortion,no one batted an eyelid

drivingmisspotty Sun 17-Dec-17 20:43:21

That's interesting that you call Save the Children a 'neutral' charity, SPUC would not agree, believing they are promoting abortion and providing MAP:

There isn't really any such thing as a neutral charity as surely charity is about putting your money behind your beliefs. Although I do get what you mean and Save is definitely more mainstream and I would choose it over SPUC myself!

I don't think the school would really care what you think though, to be honest. As far as I know faith schools are allowed to promote their beliefs/values this way. We had a visit from SPUC at my RC secondary as well and most of us bought their little pin badges in the shape/size of unborn babies' feet.

My kids c of e school are collecting at the moment for Christmas boxes distributed by local church. Much more mainstream and you can't complain about giving a treat to people using food banks at Xmas but you could say they are promoting Christianity to those people...

septembersapphire Sun 17-Dec-17 20:48:46

Mind you, a schoo, I worked with insisted the kids had to wear a Christmas jumper. No normal jumper with a bit of tinsel draped round it, an actual Christmas jumper. Which I felt was really mean.

CPtart Sun 17-Dec-17 20:49:42

My DC are at a catholic school. I would send them in jumpers without the money. Wouldn't want them missing out on the experience but no way would I support that charity. Not a lot they could do about it I imagine, but no need to complain.

MozzchopsThirty Sun 17-Dec-17 20:53:10

I'm catholic and my dcs go to catholic school.

But I can tell you know this doesn't sit well with my fucking beliefs and if our school chose a pro life charity to donate to I'd have something to say!!!

Thankfully ours are normally inoffensive charities

Lifechallenges Sun 17-Dec-17 20:54:08

In theory if you are a practicing Roman Catholic you would also support the belief that abortion is wrong. I also remember SPUC sessions in school and being given tiny baby feet anti abortion badges - around age 12/13

ReanimatedSGB Sun 17-Dec-17 20:57:02

I don't think you can complain if you are someone who visits the school as part of your job, rather than being a parent of pupils there. It's not really your business (and you don't know how many of the parents whose kids go there are actually woman-hating fuckwits anti-choicers.)
I complained three years running that my DS' primary school (non-faith school) was touting forshoeboxes for the disgusting Samaritan's Purse, and got nowhere in terms of getting the school to stop doing it, but we never participated.

MissMoneyPlant Sun 17-Dec-17 21:02:35

And I say that as someone who is probably only a 7-8 on a scale of 1: pro-life to 10: pro-choice...
It's divisive, as you say. A charity that supported women who are pregnant/have children in difficult circumstances would be a bit different (provided they don't have a militant pro-life arm!)
But tbh I find Christmas jumper day a bit off in general... Does the school's Catholic ethos generally include rampant consumerism?

tictoc76 Sun 17-Dec-17 21:03:46

Well if you send your children to a catholic school then it would be silly to not assume the school would support catholic beliefs! You kinda sign up for that. If you don’t like it don’t chose a faith school!

Can’t imagine a school wouldn’t specify who they are raising money for either.

Julie8008 Sun 17-Dec-17 21:08:55

Happened at my DS primary school, C of E. They did the Samaritans Purse shoe boxes. Certainly didn't tell parents they were going to an organisation with horrible views. Other parents didn't seem to care, it was all about the people giving and nothing to do with the people its being given to.

septembersapphire Sun 17-Dec-17 21:12:51

Catholic beliefs aren’t restricted to pro life charities, however. There are numerous very worthwhile charities that would suit the Christian outlook of the school without bringing abortion into it.

nobutreally Sun 17-Dec-17 21:17:06

Christmas Jumper day is very overtly a Save the Children event ( like Jeans for Genes or Alzheimers Elf Day etc. It's just one that's been especially successful! I'd be unimpressed (& contact school) if I felt that one charity was muscling in on the PR/hard work of another charity (rather like MNDA/ALS got frustrated when everyone started doing the ice bucket challenge for all sorts of different charities, having specifically started with them:

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