Primary schools to finally be free of religion?

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There are plans afoot under radical new proposals to be unveiled next month to allow primary schools to cease the teaching of relgion. Typically, schools have to spend up to nearly half a day every week teaching religion, owing to its current status as a core subject.

However, under new recommendations to be launched by the National Council for Curriculum and Assessment (NCCA) in January, religion would be designated as a non-core subject. Schools would have to devote 60% of teaching time to core subjects and would be free to choose how to devote the other 40% as they wished.

That could include the teaching of religion but may not.

Speaking on Newstalk breakfast, Irish Times education editor Carl O'Brien said:

"A school could prioritise literacy or numeracy or maybe coding – which is going to be a new subject potentially for children at primary school level – in favour of religious education so it really gives schools much greater freedom for the time allocation on religion."
Primary schools set to drop religion as core subject | Newstalk

Her.ie: Religion could be dropped as a core subject in primary schools
 


GrainneDee

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There are plans afoot under radical new proposals to be unveiled next month to allow primary schools to cease the teaching of relgion. Typically, schools have to spend up to nearly half a day every week teaching religion, owing to its current status as a core subject.

However, under new recommendations to be launched by the National Council for Curriculum and Assessment (NCCA) in January, religion would be designated as a non-core subject. Schools would have to devote 60% of teaching time to core subjects and would be free to choose how to devote the other 40% as they wished.

That could include the teaching of religion but may not.



Primary schools set to drop religion as core subject | Newstalk

Her.ie: Religion could be dropped as a core subject in primary schools
Schools sponsored by Christian denominations or by other religions won't drop religion, and they are the majority of schools.
 

razorblade

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Relegion should be optional over 90% of schools still have relegion in their cirriculam which is fine for anyone who wants learn it i myself went to a salesian brothers school, the option should be open to anyone who wants it, but it shouldnt be forced on anyone who doesnt believe in it but in many cases parents dont have any other choices.
 
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Schools sponsored by Christian denominations or by other religions won't drop religion, and they are the majority of schools.
But the plan is also to give parents a greater say in what schools do.

The Minister, together with Deputy Jim Daly, announced that the government have approved the draft outline of a new law, which will require every school to consult with parents and students, and publish and operate a Parent and Student Charter.
This will fulfil a key commitment in the Action Plan for Education to improve information and complaint procedures for parents and students relating to schools.
Minister Bruton said that the expectations of citizens have changed, and that education must change too to meet those new expectations. He said that we are fortunate in Ireland to have such dedicated and committed teachers and schools, and that the Parent and Student Charter will underpin those high professional standards.
Parent and Student Charter - Department of Education and Skills
 
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Oscurito

And the parents might not be as enthusiastic about getting rid of religion off the curriculum when confronted with having to take care of the religious element as well as the social aspect of First Communion and Confirmation.
If the alternative is for little Saoirse to have the chance to learn basic computer coding or German, they might be quite enthusiastic.
 

petaljam

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If the alternative is for little Saoirse to have the chance to learn basic computer coding or German, they might be quite enthusiastic.
Especially if schools can actually show that their results in Maths, English etc have improved with the extra time made available through reducing hours spent on religion. Is there any sort of published national evaluation of pupils, like SATS sets, or indeed some sort of school "league tables" in Ireland that would allow parents to compare average results year on year or school by school?
 

Ulpian

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(1) I think parents should be as far away from involved in running schools as possible. What do most parents know about education? Nothing.

(2) The idea that results in maths, English, etc. will improve if time is diverted from religious education is one that the secularists would love to believe is true. However, the evidence from every other European country with significant numbers of secular and religious schools, e.g. U.K., Germany, France, is that the performance of pupils in religious schools is better than in secular schools. There's no reason to think that Ireland will be any different.
 

GrainneDee

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But the plan is also to give parents a greater say in what schools do.
But sure the parents want the religious element - at least in the RC schools. Otherwise they would have to organise for their kids to make the communion and confirmation. They'd have to go to mass with them, and take them to classes on the weekend or in the evenings. And the church would have to provide personnel to teach the classes and prepare the kids. That's not going to happen.
 

GrainneDee

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the evidence from every other European country with significant numbers of secular and religious schools, e.g. U.K., Germany, France, is that the performance of pupils in religious schools is better than in secular schools. There's no reason to think that Ireland will be any different.
That has nothing to do with religion, but with the fact that they are either private schools or state schools that can pick and choose their students.
 
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Especially if schools can actually show that their results in Maths, English etc have improved with the extra time made available through reducing hours spent on religion. Is there any sort of published national evaluation of pupils, like SATS sets, or indeed some sort of school "league tables" in Ireland that would allow parents to compare average results year on year or school by school?
Not for primary schools, as far as I know. (Even for secondary schools, the only one I'm aware of is based on percentage of students progressing to third level.)

I think that the idea of school league tables is frowned upon here. If too much emphasis is placed on them then - for one thing - you can get schools refusing to take in less academically able children because they might lower the overall school's performance.
 

gerhard dengler

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(1) I think parents should be as far away from involved in running schools as possible. What do most parents know about education? Nothing.

(2) The idea that results in maths, English, etc. will improve if time is diverted from religious education is one that the secularists would love to believe is true. However, the evidence from every other European country with significant numbers of secular and religious schools, e.g. U.K., Germany, France, is that the performance of pupils in religious schools is better than in secular schools. There's no reason to think that Ireland will be any different.
The ever lengthening school admission waiting lists for Catholic-ethos schools is evidence of what you say, especially in England.

I've friends and relatives living and working in England and they've used every possible angle to try to get their children in to Catholic-ethos schools over there.

I've no doubt that the same would happen in Ireland.
 
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But sure the parents want the religious element - at least in the RC schools. Otherwise they would have to organise for their kids to make the communion and confirmation. They'd have to go to mass with them, and take them to classes on the weekend or in the evenings. And the church would have to provide personnel to teach the classes and prepare the kids. That's not going to happen.
I'm far from convinced that a significant majority of parents with children at RC schools are that keen to see so much time spent on religion.
 

GrainneDee

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The ever lengthening school admission waiting lists is evidence of what you say, especially in England.

I've friends and relatives living and working in England and they've used every possible angle to try to get their children in to Catholic-ethos schools over there.
That proves my point...it's all about exclusivity, nothing to do with religion.
 

GrainneDee

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I'm far from convinced that a significant majority of parents with children at RC schools are that keen to see so much time spent on religion.
Maybe not, but they want the societal rituals of communion and confirmation, but they don't really want the bother of organising it themselves.
 

Dame_Enda

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These are only proposals. The status quo is unacceptable and will eventually have to go - one way or another. It may be necessary to have Apollo House-style occupations to make the govt take action on this.
 

GDPR

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The ever lengthening school admission waiting lists for Catholic-ethos schools is evidence of what you say, especially in England.

I've friends and relatives living and working in England and they've used every possible angle to try to get their children in to Catholic-ethos schools over there.

I've no doubt that the same would happen in Ireland.
They have no clue about what they are so eager to throw away.
 

gerhard dengler

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These are only proposals. The status quo is unacceptable and will eventually have to go - one way or another. It may be necessary to have Apollo House-style occupations to make the govt take action on this.
Comedy gold time.
 


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