Is the promotion of mutual respect and tolerance incompatible with the faith ethos of some schools?
A post I wrote for my university’s blog a while back. More joys from ACE; almost every link leads to a PACE scan.
The Government has repeatedly affirmed its support for faith schools and parents’ right to pass on their religious beliefs. At the same time, standards for independent schools, announced last year, require the promotion of “mutual respect and tolerance of those with different faiths and beliefs”. Has the government considered cases where the promotion of respect and tolerance is incompatible with the school’s faith ethos?
Media reports have emphasised extremism in Muslim schools, but my research indicates that some evangelical Christian schools are also preaching intolerance. I am researching the approximately 50 Accelerated Christian Education (ACE) schools in the UK. Belief in the eternal damnation of unbelievers is part of ACE’s statement of faith.
In cases like this, where religion makes exclusive truth claims, other beliefs are necessarily seen as inferior. Evangelical Christianity views other religions as at best ‘man-made’ – in contrast to evangelicalism’s God-made Truth –…
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