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
The societal division of state education can hardly be said to be in the wider public interest.
Crispin Blunt, Conservative MP
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
I am a political secularist - I believe the State should adopt a level playing field when it comes to religious belief. Even many religious people now recognise that the State funding of religious schools involves giving special privileges to religious communities that are not afforded to the rest of us. This is unjust, anti-democratic, and should stop.
Stephen Law, Philosopher and author.
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
Supporting one faith, particularly in assemblies, in a school undermines respect for those of other faiths or no faiths. The agreed religious curriculum is biased towards having a faith and does not, especially at primary level, provide sufficient teaching materials, teacher training or time to considering life without a faith.
Religion should be a personal choice for the child, a choice made when they are old enough to form their own opinion. Faith schools are simply a recruitment drive for a belief system.
My son has just begun primary schooI and I was astonished when I began researching local schools at the unashamed discrimination against children based on the religious beliefs of their parents. In a society which has rightly and proudly legislated against all forms of prejudice it is staggering that this last bastion of discrimination continues to stand in the very core of our society and in the very place where we should be moulding the values of our children.
In our increasingly diverse society, we need to foster an environment of understanding between our differing communities. If we do not allow our children to encounter people and ideas that are different to their own, they may well never come to understand that we all have some common values. By encouraging segregation for whatever reason, we create a them and us atmosphere that can only seriously limit any chance of social cohesion.
Carrie-Ann, Stoke Newington
Tax-payer funded schools discriminating against parents and their children for not obeying a set of conditions dictated by the leaders of organised religions is both abhorrent and unfair. All state funding for such schools should be withdrawn.
A Supporter, Warrington
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