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Welsh govt launch consultation on Religious Education

Mon 28 Jan 2019
By Cara Bentley

Welsh politicians are seeking opinions on including humanism and making RE compulsory in nursery.

The consultation is open for the next eight weeks, until the 25th March, as part of a wider shake-up of the Welsh curriculum unveiled by the Minister for Education Kirsty Williams on Monday.

One of the proposed changes to RE in the government's White Paper reads: "It is our intention also that RE reflects our historical and contemporary relationship in Wales to philosophy and religious views, including non-religious beliefs.

"Therefore the current legislation will be amended to ensure the agreed syllabus for RE takes account of non-religious world views which are analogous to religions (e.g. humanism).

Humanists UK, who campaigned on the inclusion of non-religious views, said this was a 'great advance for children and families'.

Other potential changes include no longer making RE compulsory for sixth-form students and asking parents whether they still agree that there should remain an option to withdraw a pupil from RE or Relationships and Sex Education classes.

The opposite has been proposed for early year learners - the White Paper suggests that children should no longer be allowed to be taken out of Religious Education in school nursery classes "to ensure parity for all subjects".

They say: "We believe learners of all ages can benefit from knowledge of the broad spectrum of religious, philosophical and cultural traditions held by people in Wales."

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