Church welcomes move to retain religious observance in schools

The Church welcomes the move from Gary Bennett, an Edinburgh father, who has launched a petition for religious observance in schools to be protected.

His submission follows a move from Veronica Wikman, mother of one, who has urged Councillors to remove religious observance from non-denominational primary and secondary schools.

Mr Bennett said that his petition to protect religious observance already has over 1300 signatures, compared to just over 1000 signatories that were submitted with the petition moving to ban religious assemblies in Edinburgh.

Sandy Fraser, Convener of the Church of Scotland’s Education Committee said:

“The Church of Scotland supports guidance from the Scottish Government regarding religious observance in schools.

It says that religious observance events should be inclusive of all faiths and none. It should allow pupils and staff the opportunity to explore what spiritual development means for them.

This is why the Church of Scotland supports the suggestion of the government that schools should consider using descriptions such as “time for reflection” rather than religious observance in schools to highlight the inclusive nature of these events.

The Church of Scotland welcomes the petition lodged by Mr Bennett with the City of Edinburgh Council about religious observance.”

The Church of Scotland’s religious education resources can be found here.