Religion in schools:

Keith Binns writes: Re. “Religion in schools: time to cut the Gordian knot” (yesterday, item 11). I sympathise with Tony Taylor’s concerns about religious instruction, or RI, versus religious education. or RE, in schools. So much of it, at least here in NSW, doesn’t seem to take into account the developmental stage of the child.

I would make the following point, however: A lot of parents seem to want it as they are voting with their feet and sending their children to religious schools where immersion in a particular religious culture is compulsory. I would expect a banning of RI in schools will exacerbate that trend and state schools will lose even more students, money and political influence.

Compulsory RI should not be allowed, but to ban it out right will simply aid the drift. A local high school near us had the right idea. The principal allowed students and staff time to attend Catholic World Youth Day activates. He said: “All students should feel welcome at this school.”

Having said that, I find it fascinating that so many conservative Christian schools are springing up as it contradicts one of their basic doctrines. The Great Commission says ” Go into all the world.” They have changed that to “Build it, and they will come.”

St Paul’s command to be “in it, but not of it” has obviously passed them by.