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ERIC Number: EJ815949
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2008-Aug
Pages: 9
Abstractor: As Provided
Reference Count: 35
ISSN: ISSN-1467-5986
Religious Control of Schooling in England: Diversity and Division
Ward, Stephen
Intercultural Education, v19 n4 p315-323 Aug 2008
Britain is a multicultural, multi-faith and multiracial society overlaid by white institutional racism. The race riots in the northern cities of England in 2001 and in 2005 signal that social and ethnic divisions are prominent. This article considers the state schooling in England and the role which state-funded faith schools play in government policy to promote diversity in education. It is suggested that the divisive nature of education in Britain is borne of religious beliefs and the relationship of the State to the established Church. Given the decline in the church-going population, it might be anticipated that the interest in state-funded religious education would decline. However, recent government policy has been designed to promote their increase and the number of faith schools has grown. The article is written from the perspective of a liberal theory of education: that all children should have the opportunity to grow into autonomous thinking adults and to which religious proselytizing is a barrier. It is argued that, in the interests of social cohesion, instead of providing a diversity of schools, state education should provide inclusive schools which provide for the diversity of society within it. This is not a balanced review of the advantages and disadvantages of faith schools, which has already been undertaken (Jackson 2003. "British Journal of Religious Education" 25, no. 2: 89-102; Cush, D. 2003. "Religious Education (PCfRE)" 25, no. 2: 10-15). Rather, it is intended to contribute to and to strengthen the critical opposition to what is currently a powerful movement at both state and community levels.
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Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Descriptive
Education Level: N/A
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A