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Page 4 | Atheist family allocated C of E high school

(77 Posts)
Olly1uk Tue 14-Jan-20 11:30:21

Good morning all you lovely mums out there.

Can anyone please help or give me some advice or opinions,,,, please!... I'm really stressing about the school situation for my 2 boys.

We are an English family relocating to the UK (due to work circumstances) with our 2 boys (years 7 & 8). Due to our non religious beliefs , we have requested that our children go to a non faith school, with the perfect school, with an excellent reputation being under 1 mile from our house.

The children have always had the option of following a non religious education where we currently live and, although have learned about different faiths, have never ever studied R.E

I found out yesterday that we have been allocated a Church of England school. It is slightly further away from our preferred school and the ofsted reports state 'needs improvement'. Looking on their website, they promote the following of god, jesus and the bible heavily and worship every morning with their own prayer. They state that worship is central to the school day, have regular church services and bible readings. I read the outcome of their church school inspection the SIAMS report, I belive it is called, and this statement worries me "students are valued as god's children, so feel accepted and are eager to learn" This implies that if they don't believe in god, they won't be or feel they should be accepted.

We are atheist and have purposely raised our children without this religious nonsense and now we feel it will be pushed on them.

Has anyone else been in the same situation? Can anyone, please give me some advice. What happens if/when we decline this offer?

The school has contacted me informing me that they supposedly accept all faiths and are inclusive (inclusive, what does that mean exactly? They are an undersubscribed school; are they just trying to boost their numbers? ) and should I have any questions just call them.
What questions should I ask?... My fear is that the religion will be favoured over the quality of teaching other subjects like maths and science, and that it will filter down into other subjects. I believe I read that GCSE religious studies is compulsory at this school? I have one child who wants to be a scientist and the other who wants to be a computer programmer, where does RE fit in with this. It's useless.

Anyway, we only move in 2 weeks time so, I'm hoping to sort something out before we get to our new address....
Any advice much appreciated...

OP’s posts: |
Comefromaway Tue 21-Jan-20 11:12:29

*@Olly1uk, the GCSE in Religious Studies mandates the study of two religions or world views. Part of the remit is to compare and contrast their teachings.*

There is an alternate Catholic based syllabus which focuses almost entirely on the Catholic faith with just one section on Judaism (or Islam)

latenightjazz Tue 21-Jan-20 11:42:56

I also understood the arguments for doing Christianity, given that it is the country's predominant faith and many of the students already had a solid grounding in it, which would help them to do well in the exam

Before somebody else points it out, I'm fully aware that 52% of the British population have no religion. However, they don't all have an academic grounding in Humanism or any other non-religious world view. It's all a bit chicken and egg really. Our head of RE is typical of many in that he describes himself as a "lapsed Catholic" rather than a Humanist, but his outlook on life is Humanistic. As more of our children are now being brought up as non-religious, I think it's becoming much more important to learn about non-religious ethical frameworks, but schools are only starting to catch on slowly. The national guidance for RE says that non-religious viewpoints such as Humanism should be included in RE lessons, but it's not compulsory.

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