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← Secular schools of thought tainted

Pete H's Avatar Jump to comment 28 by Pete H

Kids do opt out of scripture class, but parents must explicitly authorise this in writing. The alternative non-class of non-education, run by non-teachers supervising non-students doing non-things, is referred to as non-scripture.

But the quality of teaching in scripture classes in NSW primary schools is so bad it is likely to achieve the opposite of its intentions. If they teach religion as well as they teach maths then we can expect religious belief to dwindle to the point where it will eventually become as rare and insignificant as mathematical numeracy.

The real problem is the waste of time. The non-scripture kids are not shown endless repeats of videos. Even that would disadvantage the scripture students. Instead many kids do nothing at all. Rules for the non-scripture kids are the usual impossible pedagogical objectives: sitting down quietly, no moving around, no noise, no poking etc. From my (1 time only) observation even personal reading isn't practical because the room they sit in doing their time under the wardenship of teacher's aide isn't sufficiently well lit, or even equipped with chairs, to enable reading.

The long term outcome is that the kids who attend these mid-week supplementary Sunday school classes are the more compliant and less self-motivated kids, whose parents don't care, or those who aren't strongly motivated to read independently in dim light.

This indicates a growing problem with religion. Atheists might be partly to blame, as so many independent and curious people no longer participate in religious institutions. Church goers, on average, might now tend to be a little more gullible and uncritical than other groups. That would be enough to make these people significantly more attractive to manipulative, charismatic, deviants who can more effectively exploit them.

Perhaps dealing with religion requires a more subtle strategy such as atheists joining churches, attaining influential senior clergy roles, and gradually converting religion into some form of spiritual science-worship. If they can have religion taught in public schools and a clergyman as a director of the Royal Society then someone like Richard Dawkins would make an ideal next Archbishop of Canterbury.

Mon, 22 Sep 2008 17:35:00 UTC | #239146