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Wednesday, 25 November 2009

Why religious schools are divisive

Someone in Bolton, Lancashire, going under the moniker “Name and address supplied” makes some sense (apart from withholding his or her name and address, for which I can’t see the point here) with an argument about how divisive religious schools are.

She (let’s call him/her she) cites an application by Muslims to open what they like to call an education centre, but claim that it will be open to other faiths.

Ah, yes, says “Name and address supplied”, but Christians won’t wish to send their kids to a Muslim “education establishment”, any more than Muslims would want to send their kids to a Christian “faith school”. She writes:

It seems that every time there is a planning application from the Muslim community to convert a building into a school, education centre, or whatever they choose to call it, one of their arguments is that it will be open to anyone. Christian education establishments claim to have the same policy.

Christian families, however, would not want their children to go into such a centre/school any more than Muslim families would want to allow their children into a Christian school.

Real integration of the communities will never be achieved while we continue to allow religious schools to exist, and that includes Church of England and Catholic schools.

There is no reason why all religions should not be taught in all schools. The teaching of a particular religion and the practice of it, however, should be undertaken in the home or in a church, mosque, temple, synagogue, etc.

Turning an ordinary house into an education centre of any religious denomination creates a dangerous precedent.


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