Monday, 17 January 2011

The Fourth R

It was wrong to spring it on people this year. But, like Diane Abbott on Question Time, I am quite sympathetic towards the English Baccalaureate. Like her on her website, but unlike Michael Gove, I am a supporter of the institutions necessary to deliver it, namely the grammar schools.

However, I have far graver reservations about the calls being made in the Catholic press for RE to be recognised alongside History and Geography for Baccalaureate purposes. In principle, yes. But the rubbish passed by the Bishops' Conferences as RE in this country's Catholic schools would not be permitted, even now, in any other discipline.

We need people in Parliament who will put down an amendment, such as would probably get through with only an angry Tablet and a quietly exultant Catholic Herald noticing, that all RE textbooks, resources and inspectors in State-funded Catholic schools must be approved directly by the Sacred Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith. Most people probably assume that this is already the case. Would that it were.

1 comment:

  1. Northern Catholic18 January 2011 at 14:51

    If only.

    People abroad think that state funding means state interference. I have to explain that a bit of state interference would be no bad thing if it meant making 16-year-old pupils write essays in RE the way they do in English or History, rather than colouring in as if they were half their age.