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09/06/2010 / John Hanna

RE is Inadequate

Religious education is “inadequate” in one in five secondary schools in England, according to watchdog Ofsted.

Ofsted chief inspector Christine Gilbert said: “This report highlights two things – first the need for better support and training for teachers and, secondly, the need for a reconsideration of the local arrangements for the oversight of RE, so schools can have a clear framework to use which helps them secure better student achievement in the subject.”

There were a number of specific concerns about the teaching of religious belief, and many schools visited did not pay sufficient attention to teaching the core beliefs of Christianity.

This isn’t good, RE is one of the few subjects that allows children and teens to think for themselves, allowing them to develop vital skills, as well as gaining an appretiation for Christianity or responding to the message of Christ. While it is the responsibility of the church and not the state to educate children and teens about God, a review of RE should be at the core of the Coalition’s programme for government in order to help create the ‘Big Society’.

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