Faith Schools to Educate About Other Religions

February 23, 2006

Source: The Times,,173-2053482,00.html

On February 23, 2006 The Times reported, "Faith schools are to be instructed to teach pupils about other religions besides their own. Leaders from the Christian, Muslim, Jewish, Hindu, Sikh and Buddhist faiths have signed a joint statement backing the teaching of an awareness of the 'tenets' of other faiths in schools. The declaration, made jointly with the Department for Education and Skills, says that religious education enables pupils to 'combat prejudice' and helps them to develop respect and sensitivity to others. The agreement commits faith schools to using the National Framework for Religious Education, drawn up in 2004, which encourages the teaching of the tenets of the five major religions but which is non-statutory. Many religious schools teach about faiths other than their own, but there is no legal requirement for them to do so. The statement says that religious education offers 'opportunities for personal reflection and spiritual development.'"