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← Three Developments in British Education

alphcat's Avatar Jump to comment 21 by alphcat

Comment 19 by Skeelo

So go into any RC state school and you will be hard pushed to see any difference between it and a non faith school. In science, PSHE, SRE and even RE. This is patently false. Anyone who is interested in what Catholic Schools in England and Wales actually teach, can find out here. This is nothing like what is taught in non faith schools. It's funny how a Catholic education is so adept at convincing those unfortunate enough to suffer it that, despite all the evidence to the contrary, there is nothing particularly Catholic about it at all. And yet, strangely enough, when all grown up, these former pupils are all too likely, when discussing Catholic schools, to come out with statements such as "My parents sent me to one" and "[ I ] send one of my children to one " while seemingly blissfully unaware of the obvious connection between the two.

Fair enough, I missed that, though a lot of that curriculum, such as the nature of god, is part of most schools RE curriculums. It also ignores the fact that the RC schools of which I'm aware of are not following those guidelines too prescriptively and RE is allocated the same amount of curriculum time in RC schools as non RC ones.

Secondly as catholic schools they are going to learn something about catholicism in RE, that is the price you pay for going to an RC school. I'm a chemistry teacher not an RE one, and can only speak about the schools I know of, but I have two children in a secular school and one in an RC school and can say that in reality, there is very little difference in what they have learnt in RE beyond a greater knowledge of the catholic hierachy and holy days. And if I'm honest, like most parents, my main concerns are what they learn in the important subjects like science, maths, English, languages, music, PSHE etc rather than in ancient myths and legends - they are what I chose the school for after all. As long as their is no overt indoctrination, which there isn't, nor attempts to force ideas which there isn't.

As for your last point, I left school, like a lot of catholics, swearing that my children would NEVER be allowed near a catholic church, school or teacher. There is no way today that I would send my child to the sort of school I attended at all!! There is no connection, the schools could not be more different if they tried.

And the school she attends has a significant number of parents who had never been near a catholic school or church in their lives until they read the school league tables and had a look at our local failing schools. Then they suddenly found God, and I suddenly found I didn't need to re- find him as I already had the baptism certificate. And there are catholic schools where the majority of the pupils are not catholic and never have been and neither are their parents

I have no love at all for the catholic church - Benedict and the likes of Sean Brady should be in prisons for allowing the sorts of abuse they allowed. nor do I think the concept of faith schools is particularly fair, I've used my baptism into a faith I despise, worshipping a deity I don't believe in to get my child and outstanding education in an excellent school. But there are lots of criticisms of faith schools in general that are wildly inaccurate that I couldn't let pass, like the notion they teach creationism or homophobia (bearing in mind the only homphobic and creationist teachers I've ever seen outed on this forum where from non faith secular schools). And the real threats to education from religious extremism are not from the existing CofE and RC schools. The sorts of religious nutters trying to run free schools are going to be a far bigger problem than kids singing a few hymns once a term. And they pose a very real danger to children.

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Wed, 13 Jun 2012 11:55:13 UTC | #947187