Monday 25 June 2007

Please Leave Your Faith At The School Gates

When it comes to religion, I'm happy to admit that i am an agnostic verging towards atheism. That's my personal choice and when it comes to other peoples choices, that's also their own personal choice.

That said, i am not a big fan of mixing religion and the public sector especially schools. To me faith schools are decisive in that a child's education is decided by their parents beliefs or so called beliefs.

Take a look at the social makeup of many faith schools and you'll see that the middle classes have learnt how to play the system. Alternatively take a trip to a church on Sunday and wonder why churches are half empty despite all these parents claiming regular attendance.

The Guardian carried a story last week about a teaching assistant wouldn't let a child read out a Harry Potter story because she was an Evangelical christian. Her reason apparently was that the book glorified witchcraft.

What i find a little worrying is that the teaching assistant thought she had the right to impose her views on a nine year old child.

One wonders what would have happened if the child had picked up one of CS Lewis Narnia series, such as the Lion, The Witch and the Wardrobe. On one hand its crammed full of christian mythology, yet on the other it also contains witchcraft and magic.

Obviously we need to have limits and common sense on what can and cant be taught, as we don't want our children being taught revisionist history about the holocaust, but when it comes to religion, leave it at the school gate

No comments: