What is the Place for Religion Within Education? Outside of all management.

Many may remember the education scandal associated with Operation Trojan Horse in 2014. A letter was given to the authorities which purported to be evidence of a plot by hard-line Islamists to replace leadership in Birmingham schools with a high proportion of attendees from Muslim backgrounds, in order to instil a much more religiously conservative ethos and curricula. Though the letter was widely suspected to be a hoax, it  raises some serious questions about what the role of religion in school should be. 

 These questions and others like it, have become a lot more difficult to answer with Ofsted delivering, on 19th January, its worst ever report to ‘The Durham Free School’; a school with a strong “Christian ethos”. The school received inadequate (the worst rating) in all areas covered in the inspection. Many of the inspector’s comments give significant cause for alarm, in relation to schooling generally but also in relation to the role that religion plays within the school. 

In the report we find comments such as:

“Reviewing the curriculum so that there are appropriate opportunities to teach students about sex and relationships and to promote respect for different faiths, beliefs and values so that they are fully ready to function as young citizens of modern Britain”

“Governors place too much emphasis on religious credentials when they are recruiting key staff and not enough on seeking candidates with excellent leadership and teaching skills”

“The religious studies curriculum was too narrow and did not give students enough opportunities to learn about different faiths and beliefs. Consequently, students’ understanding of different faiths and beliefs is sketchy with some holding prejudiced views which are not challenged.”

It is clear that the school’s management and teaching staff, and the governors have all, to some extent, allowed their own personal religious beliefs to negatively impact on the opportunity for the pupils of this school to receive an adequate education; a very sad state of affairs.

With two serious incidents in education from schools where religious values are put before teaching the role of religious schools within Britain has to be called in to question.

No one should be saying that schools should be wholly secular, with no religious education; this is not a way to foster understanding and compassion for people and their beliefs. But what can be said is that the management of a school should be wholly secular, with religion being kept to the religious studies classroom.
It has been the tradition of the government in the UK, and was written in to the American constitution that, though religion has its place, that place is not within the running of a society. Schools are a bedrock of any healthy society, and so reasonably they should fall under the same dictum that religion does not have a place within the governance of out schooling systems.

To read the Ofsted report in full follow the link below:


Wishful News

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Hello, and welcome to Green BBC and the Wishful News- trying to spread positivity, kindness and compassion to all viewers.
Wellbeing News
As always we start with a look at the wellbeing of local, consenting populations, since the stock market and GDP were abolished. And wellbeing rates in the East continue to soar, as a sense of community begins to flourish and people begin to develop knowledge in the importance of kind acts towards others in improving their own sense of wellbeing. A particular nod to Mr Trevithick of Cornwall who has sent in a picture of him washing his neighbours car- a lovely image made even better in the knowledge that this car has no been driven for three years since mass improvements in local transport made individual car travel almost unnecessary in many rural areas.

Technology News
More great news on Green technologies. In the years since Green Tech have become viable commercial ventures due to ecotax legislation making companies have to focus much more on the carbon footprint of their companies, we are proud to announce that the first environmentally friendly car has been produced that actually heals the o-zone layer. Every journey that you take in this car means that the chemical element O3 (or o-zone) is pumped back in to the atmosphere, thus re-building the o-zone layer! Plus due to government initiatives you can buy this car for £500. The goal is for all drivers to own these O-zone cars, as they are being dubbed by the media, by 2015. And we hope that this means that the polar ice caps will begin to re-freeze by 2020 and we should have Bangladesh back by 2040 which as we all know was one of the countries with the lowest sea levels and so was sub-merged in the ‘great melt’ of 2017. Plans are in place to have all public transport converted to o-zone engines within the year also. The government notes that this comes at a high price to the public who are paying via their taxes but they can bask in the knowledge that their children will be inheriting a planet able to sustain life. And for those people who do not plan to have children they can bask in the glow that they are doing a kindness to the all living creatures on the planet which has been empirically shown to improve the wellbeing of the majority which is brilliant!

Entertainment News
And we bid a fond farewell to this season of the BBC’s much-loved ‘Strictly come doctoring’; it was a close vote at the finish, but the way that Dr Elsey removed the tumour without damaging any of the surrounding nerves wowed the judges and captured the nation’s heart. And when I say nation, I of course mean tuned-in global population as the concept nation-state was abolished last month. A big congratulations to Dr Elsey on winning her top consultancy job for the newly re-un-privatised NHS.

Immigration News
As always, immigration is no longer seen as a problem as we appreciate that our birth right means nothing when it comes to where we are allowed to live in the world, and so there continues to be no immigration news. More on that story in the 10 o’clock news.

Sport News
The most expensive football club in the world has been put together in the Premier League this weekend. Many critics are saying that this is only a wealth individual coming in and buying the league, and they may be right, but it must be remembered that since 50% corporation tax came half of the £500 Million worth of transfers will be paid in tax to the state and the government promise that a few million will be going directly to providing a new boiler to all who are in need and at risk of being too cold over the winter months. Critics of this initiative say that this money could be better spent but the figures suggest that this outset could save the NHS £1 billion per year so Natalie Bennett has told critics to shut up until they have something to say that isn’t rhetoric fear-mongering and empty criticism. Even with the money spent on boilers millions will still be left to pump back in to the infrastructure such as improving local sports provisions making it more likely England might actually win a world cup- though bookies say probably not!
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A typical Primary School in the year 2024

Teacher: Good morning customers and welcome to another lesson of basic corporate maths, sponsored by The Generic Cola Company. Last time we spent our lesson looking at the statistical relationship between how much money your parents invested in Generic Cola’s stock market shares and your end of year grade. This week we will be focussing on the earnings and outgoings of your households. So, Timmy your parents earn 75,000 UK Dollars is that right?
Timmy: Yes sir.
Teacher: And what percentile of earnings does that put them in?
Timmy: The 60th percentile sir.
Teacher: Excellent Timmy, and if you listen in lessons you will surely improve on that.
Timmy: I hope so sir.
Teacher: Of course you do, Timmy. Now, if Timmy’s parents are earning UK$75,000 what percentage of their earnings are going towards basic tier tuition fees?
Tammy: 63% Sir?
Teacher: Very well done, Tammy. Tommy! Stop talking in class or I will fine you, your parents already owe £30 this week! OK, so before moving on, Tilly you can leave the class to go and receive your personal one to one teaching and massage- do say thank you to your parents once again, the money that they have donated to this school is highly commendable and something that we should all aspire to. Your parents have shown through the money that they clearly love you very much. On with the lesson customers! There are a number of jobs people can do whereby they will not be able to send their children to school. If a bin man is earning UK$7000 a year how would you express as a percentage the increase in wages needed for this person to be able to feed themselves?
Tully: 450%?
Teacher: Close but too low, it’s actually 475%. Now, an average ‘Generic cola Premier League’ striker, what percentage of their wage do they have to pay in order to buy the right to have a child?
Tinny: 0.000000000000000000000000001%
Teacher: Excellent, and the same question for a paramedic
Tally: 100000000000000000000%
Teacher: Perfect, and what would a paramedic earn if the ambulance service was privatised?
Tommy: Errr, More money, which is good.
Teacher: Partial credit, Tommy! Yes, a privatised service would benefit the income of paramedics, meaning that they could then afford to have children and send them to school, putting more money in to schools so we can provide a better education, which means…
ALL: Richer, better kids!
Teacher: Exactly customers! And this will stop you…
ALL: Being poor and evil!
Teacher: Wonderful customers, well done. Well that’s the end of today’s lesson and I hope you are looking forward to next week lessons; 1+1= more money which is good!