I am happy to join the No More Faith Schools campaign. Education must be secular.
Lord Desai, Economist and Labour politician
State-sponsored superstition should have no place in the education of children, who should be left to make up their own minds on the basis of the evidence they see around them. Education should inspire rational thought and display the pleasures of deep understanding; it should not propagate the social poison of divisive dogma.
Peter Atkins, Writer and former Professor of Chemistry at the University of Oxford
I support this campaign. There is too much segregation in life. As we live together so we grow through sharing and understanding not by reinforcing a faith or belief or one set of values. Children from all faith and belief backgrounds should be educated together and allowed to develop their own beliefs independently and within the rich communities in which we all have to live.
Lord Cashman CBE
Collectively we have an obligation to provide children with equal access to education, for that to be as inclusive as possible it needs to be secular. In a world marked by so many divisions it is important we protect our education system as something free from religious prejudice.
Lloyd Russell-Moyle, Labour MP
In today’s society, it is more important than ever that our children can enjoy a diverse and fair education, and have the chance to learn from each other’s differences. The National Secular Society’s No More Faith Schools campaign is an important step in this direction and provides a platform for those who want an inclusive education to show their support for that.
Dan Snow, Historian, broadcaster and television presenter
Superstitious beliefs are inevitable. But for the State to allow, and fund, institutions that indoctrinate young innocent minds is incredulous. Schools are for teaching literature, science, art, and music; not for spreading supernatural beliefs and fear.
Robinson, from BIRMINGHAM
I’m Jewish and have been upset to see many non-religious family and friends having no realistic choice for an acceptable education but to send their children to Jewish schools. These children run the risk of growing up in a bubble - not learning (as I did at my state comprehensive school) that people are just people no matter their skin colour or cultural background. Schools should be bringing communities together rather than driving them apart.
Su, from NORTH LONDON
I'm fed up of reading stories about children being forced to do religious stuff just because the closest or most convenient or only school with availability in their area is a faith one. No one should be forced to do anything religious just to get an education. It's 2021 and people still don't understand this. Segregating children according to religion increases the likelihood of intolerance towards vulnerable groups and fundamentalism resulting in harm. It also isolates children from the majority of the population, so they don't get to meet many people outside of their faith. This makes it far too easy to brainwash them into hating those not like them. I know, I used to be one, but I managed to escape. Three days a week of religious indoctrination was bad for me. I can't imagine what 5 full days a week would do. School should be for learning not indoctrination. That should be done outside of school.
Lauren, from EDINBURGH
The UK is now a multi-faith, multicultural, largely secular society. If people want religion to be part of their children’s daily practices or inculcation, they have several choices: do it at home; send them to private religious educational institutions; or set up a privately funded facility nearby but off the school campus.
Doug, from EDINBURGH
I was brought up in Catholic schools in Glasgow in the 60’s and 70’s, and just down the road were the ‘Protestant’ schools, as we were taught. All throughout my schooling there were fights between us and we all thought that was just the way it was everywhere! Well, it was in Scotland. And still is, from what I can see. This bigotry was ingrained in us. It wasn't until I left school that I saw how poisonous faith schools were. The state should have nothing to do with promoting such divisions in our society. Faith schools must go!
Terence, from GLASGOW
Posted: Wed, 15 Dec 2021 11:30
The dominance of faith schools in certain areas forces families seeking a local education into impossible...
Posted: Thu, 23 Sep 2021 11:26
When families are assigned faith schools they don't want, left with no choice or locked out of local...
Parent’s perspective: My daughter has to take Catholic-centric RE – at the expense of other subjects
Posted: Wed, 04 Aug 2021 09:26
My daughter's Catholic school says RE is required for all students, undermining her choices elsewhere....
Posted: Fri, 04 Jun 2021 09:36
While faith based inspections of state schools continue, headteachers will continue to play a game which...
Head’s perspective: Church inspections impeded efforts to promote inclusivity and an honest education
Posted: Wed, 19 May 2021 10:33
Our local Church of England diocese used an anachronistic faith-based inspection regime to push its own...
Posted: Tue, 06 Apr 2021 15:06
After decades of experience as a headteacher and local adviser I became convinced that faith schools...
Parent’s perspective: Playing the faith school admissions game would teach my children the wrong lessons
Posted: Fri, 05 Feb 2021 08:42
Almost all the places at the school my daughter wants to attend are reserved on a religious basis. Jumping...
Posted: Thu, 26 Nov 2020 11:27
We were unprepared for how strongly a Catholic school would push religion on our child, says Natassa....
Posted: Fri, 23 Oct 2020 09:55
By giving special weight to RE, my son's C of E faith school has restricted his options elsewhere, says...
Posted: Thu, 08 Oct 2020 10:01
Local faith schools' selective policies have created an unseemly competition for places, leaving parents...