“The recent judicial review will have no impact”

The UK Education Secretary thinks state schools should be pushing Christianity.

Schools must teach pupils that Britain is a mainly Christian country and have “no obligation” to teach atheism, the Education Secretary has said.

Seeking to clarify a High Court ruling last month, which found the Government had unlawfully excluded non-religious views from the curriculum, Nicky Morgan said schools are still free to prioritise religious teachings.

New guidance from the Department for Education insists that non-religious beliefs need not be given “equal parity” with religious belief and that non-faith schools should reflect the fact that British religious traditions “are, in the main, Christian”.

Seeking to clarify? That sounds more like seeking to ignore. The High Court ruled that the Government can’t exclude┬ánon-religious views from the curriculum, and Nicky Morgan is saying yes it can too so.

A recent case, brought by the British Humanist Association (BHA), sought to ensure that alternative world views were put before pupils in secondary schools.

Judges ruled last month that it had been wrong to suggest the content of the new Religious Studies (RS) GCSE could fulfil all of a school’s religious education obligations.

Teach anything about religion you like, as long as it’s Christianity.

Morgan is said to have been concerned that humanists were using the court ruling to pressure schools into giving non-religious views more prominence:

This Government is determined to protect schools’ freedom to set their own religious studies curriculum, in line with the wishes of parents and the local community.

The guidance I have issued today makes absolutely clear that the recent judicial review will have no impact on what is currently being taught in religious education.

I am clear that both faith and non-faith schools are completely entitled to prioritise the teaching of religion and faith over non-religious world views if they wish.

Erm…that’s just plain old defiance. It’s standing in the schoolhouse door. It’s saying the Tory government is above the law.

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