I’m training to be an RE teacher. It’s a subject that has taken a fair few knocks in recent years, with detractors saying that there’s no place in the curriculum for a subject that’s based on nothing more than superstitious nonsense.
You might guess that I disagree. I think RE provides a unique space in school for students to explore the big questions of life – who I am, what do I believe? Bad RE happens when we try and force people into a particular position. Good RE creates the space for exploration to happen.
Every human being is a spiritual. I really do believe that. So it’s our job to try and create some kind of spiritual literacy that young people can use to explore their world.
This photo is from my Subject Studies classroom at Marjon. It sums up some of the things that I think RE can be and do.
What do you think? Is there a place for it in schools today?
Should it have a radical rethink about its name (I’m not a big fan of the Religious Education)? What about something like Beliefs and Values, or Philosophy and Ethics?
Whatever, I think it’s really important that schools aren’t just places where ‘intellectual intelligence’ is explored, but where ’emotional intelligence’ is also vital.