I need help, RS is being diminished in many schools because Ofsted does nothing when schools are non compliant. RS is a fabulous subject that allows students to understand the world they live in and ask questions that matter to them. There are over 5,000 deities worshipped on this planet. I even cover atheism and humanism. Please sign my petition, I know about the apostrophe, auto correct bit me. petition.parliament.uk/petitions/114597
At the (independent) school where I work, R.S. is taught in Years 7 to 9 and is loved by the students. I teach English and see my colleague who teaches R.S. as a fantastic ally; his lessons really support English as the students are often debating or doing other speaking and listening activities, and their vocabulary is greatly enhanced by what they learn in his lessons. On top of that, of course, as you say, it´s important that they do learn about other beliefs, cultures and religions. As a tutor, this term, I´ve discussed topics with my tutees such as AIDS, the Paris attacks and ISIL, all of which have involved areas of religion, and I find that when students understand different cultures, they can make better sense of the world around them. Certainly I agree with you that schools should ensure that their curriculum covers this. I suppose in some schools it is included as part of the pastoral education.