"The existence of “Christian-Focused Religious Education” as a choice, offered to parents, enriches our pluralistic society." - Brolly
"The research paper from UU's Unesco Education Centre is just the most recent contradictory piece of ‘information’ intent on eradicating Christian ethos from the education system. By placing the blame, for all types on division, firmly on the shoulders of those of us who believe in parental choice.
This paper pushes the false narrative that Christian ethos is ‘drummed’ into our students and totally disregards the concept of parental choice. The existence of “Christian-Focused Religious Education” as a choice, offered to parents and their children, enriches our pluralistic society.
We in Aontú, believe in a pluralist society, we believe “Christian-Focused” Education is a wonderful component of our pluralist education system. We believe in human rights: "No person shall be denied the right to education. In the context of education, the State must respect the right of parents to ensure such education and teaching in conformity with their own religious and philosophical convictions." (Human Rights Act.) How can the removal of parental choice advance ‘diversity’ and ‘inclusivity?’
This research paper states that “Church involvement in the drawing up of the RE specification needs to be revised in order that a genuinely pluralistic and inclusive programme of education can be developed, delivered and quality assured in practice…” This is built upon the groundless claim that Christian-Focused Education exudes inclusivity and pluralism. There is no body of evidence to demonstrate this form of education breeds division or sectarianism. There is, however, extensive evidence and examples of Christian-Focused schools overcoming division and welcoming diversity, opening their doors and accommodating with emphasis on the needs and best interests of the child. Many pupils have opted to go to Christian-focused schools to receive a first rate education where the Christian ethos does not “pervade daily routine” but is naturally intertwined throughout their routine. Such an education is valued because it moulds our young people to be the best they can be, not only within school but within their own communities.
Aontú will continue to work to repair and rebuild our education system for each and every child, regardless of what sector of education they belong. We have great faith in a pluralist education system within a pluralist society and will not allow any individual ethos to be scapegoated for the failures of governments and leaders past."