Several reports including those by OFSTED and the All Parliamentary Group for Religious Education have found that Religious Education is not as good as it should be in both community and Church of England Schools.
Making a Difference? A Review of Education in Church of England Schools published by the National Society in 2014 found that at primary level there are similar challenges to those found in community schools and recommended a more robust and challenging approach to the teaching of Christianity. This, in turn, will complement the improved teaching of other faiths. The report recommended greater support and training for teachers of RE in primary schools to increase subject specialism.
As a Diocese we are committed to improving the quality of RE in all school across the Diocese. We work to do this primarily through supporting the networking of teachers in hubs through the Learn Teach Lead RE Project and through supporting the work of local SACREs. In addition Diocesan Education Offers offer courses for subject leaders and governors as well as bespoke advice and support in school. An RE newsletter is published every half term which is sent to schools and can be downloaded from this site.
The SIAMS Framework sets out a basic Statement of Entitlement for Religious Education for all Church of England Schools which schools are expected to adhere to.
New materials promoting the teaching of Christianity through theological enquiry are being developed. Schools had the opportunity to be part of a pilot in Summer 2015 – please contact Tatiana Wilson. Diocesan Education Officers will support the implementation of new materials in all schools.
Please see guidelines for parental right of withdrawal from collective worship and/or religious education: Exeter Diocese RE CW Withdrawal Policy