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
Faith schools contribute to the fragmentation of our education system and the religious segregation of pupils. This is not conducive to social integration, cohesion and equal opportunities for all. That's why I'm supporting the 'No more faith schools' campaign. I want to see an education system that is free from religious control and that brings together pupils from all backgrounds and beliefs.
Peter Tatchell, Human rights campaigner
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
If we are aiming for an inclusive society, the fewer divisions we can impose on our growing children the better.
Virginia Ironside, Journalist, agony aunt and author
I am happy to join the No More Faith Schools campaign. Education must be secular.
Lord Desai, Economist and Labour politician
It is a lie to call non denominational schools such, when they are clearly Church of Scotland inclined. A non denominational school does not require a linked church or named minister. In a nation where less than half the country identifies as religious, we do not need 'religious observance' to be a required element in any school. State funded schools are not an appropriate place for religious indoctrination.
I do not see that religion holds any place in defining our education system. I believe all religions should be taught in schools for the purposes of a tolerant and understanding society, but I am not comfortable having the church make important decisions for my childrens' futures.
Hana, Tunbridge Wells
Allowing schools to discriminate against students on the basis of their parents' religion is socially divisive and fosters intolerance towards people of other faiths. The government should be seeking to eliminate discrimination in the UK school system, not increase it.
I am pagan and have pagan friends that live in the affected areas. Please do not scrap the cap. I can only imagine how many families it may negatively affect. Getting rid of this cap will only divide the people of your country in terrible ways.
The Scottish Secular Society strongly supports the NSS "No More Faith Schools" campaign. At a time when social cohesion is a matter of great concern, it is folly to increase the amount of separation between different faith communities by segregating children according to parental affiliation. In many parts of England, faith schools already dominate to the point where parents (and pupils) find themselves with no option other than schools whose religious identities they do not share. It is not the case that the specific ethos of faith schools is universally shared; if it were, they would not need to be labelled as distinct faith schools. In our diverse society, it is an imposition on taxpayers, half of whom do not even identify themselves as members of a religion, to be forced to subsidise the indoctrination of children with beliefs that they do not themselves subscribe to. Finally, problems have already arisen within schools of more than one religion because of the influence of extremist doctrines denying evolution, despite the fact that in England the importance of evolution is recognised in the curriculum from the primary level onwards. For all these reasons, we consider that the further expansion of faith schools will work against intellectual independence and good community relations, contrary to the interests of schoolchildren, and of the wider community of which they are part.
Professor Paul S. Braterman, Science adviser to Scottish Secular Society
Posted: Wed, 13 Jun 2018 09:43
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