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Is teaching in Religious Education about other faiths compulsory?

Local councils are responsible for deciding the RE syllabus for maintained schools. It is designed by local Standing Advisory Councils on Religious Education (SACREs). These consist of representatives from the Church of England, Local Authorities, teachers, and a range of Christian denominations and other beliefs, including humanism. In faith schools and academies the content of the RE curriculum is determined by the governing body and can reflect the distinctive faith of the school.

As a Christian parent, it is right that you want your child to receive a good grounding in teaching about the Bible, Jesus and the gospel. However, good RE teaching also helps children to understand and critique beliefs and ideas. Allowing time for personal reflection and freedom for critical response, it should explore how belief systems seek to provide answers to the big questions about meaning and the purpose of life. In a plural society, this will inevitably entail learning about other faiths and also about non-religious belief systems. Every child needs to leave school with a level of literacy about world religions if they are to be equipped to navigate the global society in which we all now live. As ever, without solid Bible teaching in the home and in the church, your child will be as susceptible as any child to misunderstanding, error and untruth.