Yes, we need better religious education at school Watch

GuppyFox
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Inspired by this article[

At school I must confess I never really paid attention, nor interest into religious studies.

We witness increased unhappiness with multiculturalism, but how are people meant to learn to accept one another when we don't understand one another? For children, the only exposure they are receiving is the news painting certain religions as bad, or parents being racist and distorting their views from the off?

It's about time schools teach our children why we need to accept one another, and this needs to be done with more religious education. 13-year-old me would have hated that but I think it is now essential.

Do you think we should have more religious education?
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EdCohen
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(Original post by GuppyFox)
Inspired by this article[At school I must confess I never really paid attention, nor interest into religious studies.We witness increased unhappiness with multiculturalism, but how are people meant to learn to accept one another when we don't understand one another? For children, the only exposure they are receiving is the news painting certain religions as bad, or parents being racist and distorting their views from the off?It's about time schools teach our children why we need to accept one another, and this needs to be done with more religious education. 13-year-old me would have hated that but I think it is now essential. Do you think we should have more religious education?
Yeah I think spirituality is really under-emphasized in the classroom - teaching religion not only promotes diversity but can help with stress and countless other things......Brace yourself for the Dawkins and Hitchens worshippers....who want to stop all children from being indoctrinated into a system of fear and credulity. lol.
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The Epicurean
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(Original post by EdCohen)
Yeah I think spirituality is really under-emphasized in the classroom - teaching religion not only promotes diversity but can help with stress and countless other things......Brace yourself for the Dawkins and Hitchens worshippers....who want to stop all children from being indoctrinated into a system of fear and credulity. lol.
I highly doubt anybody who likes Dawkins or Hitchens would have a problem with better religious education.

Would you be quite so open to having atheism also taught alongside religion in RE classes?
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zippity.doodah
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I think we should either:
1) have no religious education at all, as a form of state secualism like in american schools (the ones that actually obey the law, that is)
2) as an alternative form of secularism, have most world religions (and not just the most populated ones) *and* atheism taught about in a "philosophy" class which will be basically RPSE but not so focused on religion.
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claireestelle
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my school made it compulsory to do a short course gcse in re of which i got an A in, as an atheist i dont feel like i learnt anything from the lessons and we were being taught the answers to the exams, didnt really teach us to have an appreciation for diversity or religious beliefs.
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The_Lonely_Goatherd
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I have often said on TSR that religious education is important but needs to be monitored closely. There needs to be breadth as well as depth and nuanced, balanced teaching. I heard something about the new RE GCSE or some revised/new RE qualification that you have to study two traditions and at least ONE of those has to not be your own, e.g. Catholic schools can't pick both Christianity AND Catholicism to study. That sounds good to me and I think needs to be a general theme in religious education across the board.

(As an aside, I have also often said on here, religious education, PSHE and sciences need to be monitored in faith schools.)
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HAnwar
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(Original post by The Epicurean)
I highly doubt anybody who likes Dawkins or Hitchens would have a problem with better religious education.

Would you be quite so open to having atheism also taught alongside religion in RE classes?
Isn't atheism though usually taught within RE as well?

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blackened_sky
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(Original post by claireestelle)
my school made it compulsory to do a short course gcse in re of which i got an A in, as an atheist i dont feel like i learnt anything from the lessons and we were being taught the answers to the exams, didnt really teach us to have an appreciation for diversity or religious beliefs.
This. What they teach you in RE is of no use. Bible verses and religious festivals and **** like learning about Job don't help teach that everyone should be accepted. Think kids need to be taught about the likes of ISIS and how that doesn't constitue "all Muslims are terrorists" etc.

The religion we're "taught" about today is so outdated. Miracle caves lmao, screw that.
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The Epicurean
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(Original post by HAnwar)
Isn't atheism though usually taught within RE as well?

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I'm not sure. I went to a religious school. For me, religious education comprised of Catholicism, and a little Judaism. Atheism was not mentioned once, ever.
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claireestelle
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(Original post by The_Lonely_Goatherd)
I have often said on TSR that religious education is important but needs to be monitored closely. There needs to be breadth as well as depth and nuanced, balanced teaching. I heard something about the new RE GCSE or some revised/new RE qualification that you have to study two traditions and at least ONE of those has to not be your own, e.g. Catholic schools can't pick both Christianity AND Catholicism to study. That sounds good to me and I think needs to be a general theme in religious education across the board.

(As an aside, I have also often said on here, religious education, PSHE and sciences need to be monitored in faith schools.)
I wish my school would have had the rule of one musn't be your own, always felt the catholic re teacher focused on Christianity much more than any other religion. I don't think buddihism was mentioned once in all the years she taught us and i would have liked to have learnt about that.
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HAnwar
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(Original post by The Epicurean)
I'm not sure. I went to a religious school. For me, religious education comprised of Catholicism, and a little Judaism. Atheism was not mentioned once, ever.
I went to a faith school and we covered all the main religions including atheism and agnosticism.

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Swanbow
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On the contrary I think religious education at school gave me a good understand of Christianity, Hinduism, Islam, Sikhism and Humanism. Our teachers were fair and impartial, being in a non-religious state school. We also went over moral and ethical issues such as abortion, euthanasia and environmentalism. I enjoyed it, and gave up the chance for extra Maths classes to continue with my GCSE short course in Religious Education.

The problem primarily was that no one was interested in it, and people were disruptive. People were openly hostile to the class, treating it as some sort of Bible bashing exercise, claiming that because they weren't religious there was no need for them to be in class to have religion 'forced' on them. It never was, we were simply taught about different religions, including Christianity, so we could better understand them. Ironic given that our teacher was an agnostic atheist, who taught us to be critical and open to ideas but always respectful :lol:
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spanker
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Funny because when I was at school all the RE lessons were based on other religions that (at the time) had no relevance to my area.
We never learned about Christianity which I found stupid because it is the most common religion(at the time - i'm guessing).

Oh actually, we got given a bible once and that was it.
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teenhorrorstory
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I agree.
Although my RE course discussed issues such as the validity of Creationism, Atheist responses to how the universe was formed, problems of evil and suffering, how it could lead to disbelief.. Unanswered prayers etc...
I think the courses should also include criticisms of some aspects of Religions. We learnt about Islam and Christianity, i felt only soft parts of the religions were covered
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The Epicurean
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(Original post by HAnwar)
I went to a faith school and we covered all the main religions including atheism and agnosticism.

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Do you also feel that all the topics were cover impartially?

What type of faith school was it, if you don't mind me asking?
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HAnwar
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(Original post by The Epicurean)
Do you also feel that all the topics were cover impartially?

What type of faith school was it, if you don't mind me asking?
To an extent- yes. But we mainly focused on Islam since our RE GCSE only covered Islam.

It was an all girls Muslim school.

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thenextchemist
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We learned four main religions
Buddhism
Christianity
Islam
Hinduism
And we briefly learnt Sikhism and Judaism
I used every one of these religions somewhere in my GCSE exam


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scrawlx101
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i agree tbh it should be taught in primary school when none of us know any different...at secondary school in year 7 it should be compulsory and then optional.
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anosmianAcrimony
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(Original post by Swanbow)
On the contrary I think religious education at school gave me a good understand of Christianity, Hinduism, Islam, Sikhism and Humanism. Our teachers were fair and impartial, being in a non-religious state school. We also went over moral and ethical issues such as abortion, euthanasia and environmentalism. I enjoyed it, and gave up the chance for extra Maths classes to continue with my GCSE short course in Religious Education.

The problem primarily was that no one was interested in it, and people were disruptive. People were openly hostile to the class, treating it as some sort of Bible bashing exercise, claiming that because they weren't religious there was no need for them to be in class to have religion 'forced' on them. It never was, we were simply taught about different religions, including Christianity, so we could better understand them. Ironic given that our teacher was an agnostic atheist, who taught us to be critical and open to ideas but always respectful :lol:
It sounds as if you got lucky with your religious education course. Judging by the rest of the thread, it doesn't look like everyone did, though.
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Hariex
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RS is arguably one of the most important lessons you can take at secondary school. With billions of the population identifying as religious it is essential to understand their mindset. It certainly deserves a priority (and perhaps it already does) over more technical subjects like art or music, which needlessly occupy school timetables in the earlier years.
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