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for Christians working in education

The week
News items from the week’s daily and education press, covering the major education news stories of the week.

Leeds Christians in Education Events.

I’m just letting you know about our Leeds Christians in Education events coming up at the Leeds Church Institute that I thought you might be interested in and could share, if appropriate.

 

Leeds Christians in Education is a series of meetings and podcasts aimed at supporting Christians in the world of education. We will be looking at current issues in education and how we respond as Christians.

 

Our next meeting will be on Tuesday 13th November, 6.30pm at the Leeds Church Institute, 20 New Market Street, LS1 6DG and we will be looking at pressure to achieve.

 

There will also be meetings on Tuesday 12th February and Tuesday 18th June.

 

Together we will

 

  • Celebrate education in Leeds
  • Grow in awareness of the challenges and issues, and current educational responses in Leeds
  • Spend some time in prayer with words, photos, drawing, and silence
  • Develop connections between Christians who are situated in the same schools, colleges, and Universities.
  • Support those who are involved in making decisions that affect children, young people, students, and all those who are themselves, educators.

 

There will also be podcasts before and after each meeting on the following dates.

 

Saturday 10th November

Saturday 23rd November

Saturday 9th February

Saturday 22nd February

Saturday 15th June

Saturday 28th June

 

You can subscribe to the LCI podcast in itunes, stitcher or by searching for LCI podcast in all good podcast apps.

 

 

Lawrence Cockrill

Media and Events Coordinator

Leeds Church Institute

0113 391 7928

LCILeeds.org

 


Petition on Relationships Education by Voice for Justice.

Petition to: To the Secretary of State for Education - the Rt Hon Damian Hinds MP
 

Uphold the right of parents to have children educated in line with their religious beliefs.  Stop supporting LGBT indoctrination

         

Uphold the right of parents to have children educated in line with their religious beliefs.  Stop supporting LGBT indoctrination

The attempted push by LGBT activists to make teaching about alternative lifestyles and sexualities compulsory for all children from the age of 4 is a declaration of war against Christianity. It suppresses freedom of belief as enshrined in the Bible, and denies the right to free speech. Worse, it is a form of indoctrination of young minds, who have no experience or understanding of the possible outcomes of different behaviours and who, by definition, lack the emotional and intellectual maturity to judge such issues for themselves.

LGBT activists argue that failure to teach the new morality will mean children are not prepared for modern life and will grow up intolerant (www.thetimes.co.uk/article/private-primaries-allowed-to-drop-lessons-on-being-gay-bpgvst0mt ). The practical effect of this pernicious policy is to silence faith groups, saying they are not allowed to voice their beliefs in public, and that parents are not allowed to transmit those beliefs to their children, on the grounds that it is religious indoctrination.

This malign reframing of education is a species of ideological totalitarianism, determinedly suppressing any and all views that cast doubt on the ‘new’ morality.

We respectfully remind the Minister of State for Education and his department that, under the Equality Act 2010, religion is listed alongside such things as age, disability, gender reassignment, race and sex, as a protected characteristic. Discrimination against all these groups, in whatever setting, is therefore unlawful. Whatever pressure they may exert, LGBT groups do not have hierarchical priority over other groups (www.equalityhumanrights.com/en/equality-act/protected-characteristics ).

We further point out that the twin freedoms of belief and of speech are enshrined respectively in Articles 9 and 10 the European Convention of Human Rights, to which the UK is a signatory (www.echr.coe.int/Documents/Convention_ENG.pdf ). Article 2 of this same Convention further states, ‘In the exercise of any functions which it assumes in relation to education and to teaching, the State shall respect the right of parents to ensure such education and teaching in conformity with their own religious and philosophical convictions.’

It is morally and legally unacceptable that from the age of four our children are being indoctrinated into beliefs that run counter to our faith. It is unacceptable that the right of parents to have their children educated in line with their religious or philosophical beliefs is being denied.

We therefore call on Government to drop immediately the proposed plans to make Relationships and Sex Education mandatory in both the State and private sectors, and instead to divert already hard pressed resources into providing and building an educational system that will best serve our children and of which we can all be proud.

This petition has been created by a citizen or association not affiliated with CitizenGO. CitizenGO is not responsible of its contents.
+ Letter to:

Petition to: To the Secretary of State for Education - the Rt Hon Damian Hinds MP

Uphold the right of parents to have children educated in line with their religious beliefs. Stop supporting LGBT indoctrination.

The attempted push by LGBT activists to make teaching about alternative lifestyles and sexualities compulsory for all children from the age of 4 is a declaration of war against Christianity.  It suppresses freedom of belief as enshrined in the Bible, and denies the right to free speech.  Worse, it is a form of indoctrination of young minds, who have no experience or understanding of the possible outcomes of different behaviours and who, by definition, lack the emotional and intellectual maturity to judge such issues for themselves.

 

LGBT activists argue that failure to teach the new morality will mean children are not prepared for modern life and will grow up intolerant (https://www.thetimes.co.uk/article/private-primaries-allowed-to-drop-lessons-on-being-gay-bpgvst0mt).  The practical effect of this pernicious policy is to silence faith groups, saying they are not allowed to voice their beliefs in public, and that parents are not allowed to transmit those beliefs to their children, on the grounds that it is religious indoctrination.  

 

This malign reframing of education is a species of ideological totalitarianism, determinedly suppressing any and all views that cast doubt on the ‘new’ morality.  

We respectfully remind the Minister of State for Education and his department that, under the Equality Act 2010, religion is listed alongside such things as age, disability, gender reassignment, race and sex, as a protected characteristic.  Discrimination against all these groups, in whatever setting, is therefore unlawful.   Whatever pressure they may exert, LGBT groups do not have hierarchical priority over other groups (https://www.equalityhumanrights.com/en/equality-act/protected-characteristics).   

We further point out that the twin freedoms of belief and of speech are enshrined respectively in Articles 9 and 10 the European Convention of Human Rights, to which the UK is a signatory (https://www.echr.coe.int/Documents/Convention_ENG.pdf).   Article 2 of this same Convention further states, ‘In the exercise of any functions which it assumes in relation to education and to teaching, the State shall respect the right of parents to ensure such education and teaching in conformity with their own religious and philosophical convictions.’ 

It is morally and legally unacceptable that from the age of four our children are being indoctrinated into beliefs that run counter to our faith.  It is unacceptable that the right of parents to have their children educated in line with their religious or philosophical beliefs is being denied.  

 

We therefore call on Government to drop immediately the proposed plans to make Relationships and Sex Education mandatory in both the State and private sectors, and instead to divert already hard pressed resources into providing and building an educational system that will best serve our children and  of which we can all be proud.

 

Take part in the Voice for Justice Petition.

 

 

 

Education Conference and ACT AGM Saturday 24th November.

Education Conference and ACT AGM Saturday 24th November.

“Identity, Sexuality and the Gospel: A better story for our schools”

 

A day conference for all Christians involved and interested in Education

 

 

Aim of the conference:  To provide a collegial forum for Christians involved in education (Heads, Teachers, TAs, Governors, parents and others) to develop a view of education which is authentically Christian and to be equipped to face the social and political challenges in the UK today., especially as they affect views on identity, sexuality, marriage and the family.

 

Date:  Saturday 24 November 2018

 

Venue:  St. Ebbe’s Church, Oxford (central Oxford: easily reached from Oxford Station or Park & Ride buses)

 

Cost: Delegates are asked to contribute £10 towards the costs of the conference.

 

Principal speakers: Dr. Stanton Jones, Professor of Psychology at Wheaton College, Illinois, USA; Rev. Vaughan Roberts, Rector of St. Ebbe’s; Bishop Michael Nazir-Ali, former Bishop of Rochester. We shall also be hearing from a variety of politicians and seminar leaders. 

Dr. Stanton Jones writes that he hopes to cover the following topics during the course of the day:

  • Understand the “spirit of the times” that is eroding the traditional stance of Christians globally on sexuality and sexual ethics;
  • Strengthen the ability to articulate persuasively and positively a Christian understanding of sexuality that is comprehensive and compelling;
  • Deepen your appreciation for the contributions to and limitations of science in enhancing our understandings of persons and their sexuality
  • Understand a model of character development that will foster effective teacher-student-parent collaboration and communication and set a redemptive context for effective child discipline;
  • Cast a vision for family, school and church collaboration in enhancing the internalization of Christian morality by our students

 

 

Programme for the day:

 

 9.45 -   Coffee and register

10:00 – Introduction – Bishop Michael Nazir-Ali

10:20 – Devotional – Rev. Vaughan Roberts

10:50 – Introducing Dr. Stanton Jones

11:00 – Keynote Address: Stanton Jones

12:00 – Q & A

12:30 – Lunch

13:15 – Seminar Options – moving to rooms

13:30 – Seminars

14:30 – Politician 1

14:45 – Politician 2

15:00 – Politician 3

15:15 – Panel Discussion (Q & A) with all speakers

15:45 – Round-Up – Bishop Michael Nazir-Ali

16:00 – Finish  

 

Seminar Topics will be announced shortly, as will the names of the Politicians attending. One seminar will be led by Dr. Stanton Jones, developing the ideas he will have set out in his main talk. Another seminar will be led by Guy Hordern and Ron Skelton on Religious Education and Collective Worship. A third seminar will deal with legal issues which affect Christian teachers in schools.

 

Refreshments and lunch: we suggest that people bring their own lunch: tea and coffee will be provided. 

 

All are most welcome: How to Register -

Please send an email saying who will be coming to Hugh Bradby tisca@btinternet.com

If you wish to send your £10 now, cheques may be made out to TISCA and mailed to Box 4462, Leamington Spa CV31 9EG. Otherwise please pay on the door.

Alternatively, you may book for the conference on Eventbritehere:

https://www.eventbrite.co.uk/e/identity-sexuality-and-the-gospel-a-better-story-for-our-schools-tickets-49738855255?aff=ebdssbdestsearch

 


Adult digital skills to be overhauled.

Adult digital skills qualifications are to be overhauled under plans announced today (18 October) by Apprenticeships and Skills Minister Anne Milton to help more people of all ages benefit from getting online.

The latest survey estimates that 11.3 million adults in the UK do not have the full range of basic digital skills required to operate effectively in day to day life – like sending an email or completing an online form - and 4.3 million have no digital skills at all. With an estimated 90% of all jobs in the next 20 years requiring some form of digital knowledge, it is vitally important that everyone, whatever their age or background, can gain the skills they need in an increasingly online world.

Getting digitally active is not just good for the economy, but has a wide range of positive personal benefits. Research shows that over 70% people aged over 55 say being online means they can do things more quickly, like paying bills, and that it helps reduce feelings of isolation.

To help boost adult digital skills the government has launched a consultation during Get Online Week setting out plans to:

  • Overhaul the current national standards setting out the core digital skills people need to get on in life and work – supporting them to use digital devices like tablets, smart phones and laptop computers, and to perform everyday activities that most people take for granted like how to navigate the internet, send an email, complete online forms and make online payments.
  • Introduce improved basic digital skills qualifications at two levels – beginner and essential.
  • Introduce a nationwide entitlement for all adults without basic digital skills to enrol on the new qualifications free of charge from 2020

Read more.


GCSE textbook withdrawn and to be rewritten.

A GCSE textbook will be rewritten after more offensive statements came to light – including the claim that working-class children often lack the right “attitudes” to succeed in education.

The sociology textbook – which was taken off the market last week after it faced backlash for a “racist” description of Caribbean fathers being “largely absent” – has received even more criticism.

 

The resource, which has been criticised for reinforcing stereotypes, includes a claim that wives from sub-Saharan Africa are replaced if they cannot have children, according to reports by the HuffPost.

Read more.


Early Years Foundation Stage results improve.

The latest EYFS Profile results show that 71.5 per cent of children achieved a good level of development in 2018, an increase of 0.8 percentage point on 2017.

Both boys and girls have improved in the three key measures – achieving a good level of development, achieving at least the expected level across all early learning goals (ELGs), and the average point score.

Boys have improved at a faster rate, which means the gender gap has decreased. The gender gap for the percentage of children achieving a good level of development has reduced in each year from 2014 and fell from 13.7 percentage points to 13.5 percentage points in 2018.

Read more.


Chidren's writers welcome Ofsted's plans to jusge on broad range of education.

Children’s writers including Frank Cottrell Boyce and Piers Torday have hailed Ofsted’s plans to judge schools on the broad range of their education as “great news”.

“Anything that moves away from making humans fit the demands of algorithms instead of the other way round is great news,” said the Carnegie medal-winning Cottrell Boyce, one of a chorus of authors to welcome the proposed changes.

Ofsted’s chief inspector Amanda Spielman admitted last week that the schools watchdog has placed “too much weight on test and exam results when we consider the overall effectiveness of schools” in recent years. In future, she said the new inspection regime would reward schools that offer a broad range of subjects, and would challenge those “where too much time is spent on preparation for tests at the expense of teaching, where pupils’ choices are narrowed or where children are pushed into less rigorous qualifications mainly to boost league-table positions”.

Read more.


Staff and students walk on Westminster.

In his tailored navy suit and tortoiseshell spectacles, Gerry McDonald looks an unlikely rebel. Yet on Wednesday this well-mannered college principal will make history when he shuts the college doors and heads for Westminster.

He is urging staff and as many of the 25,000 students as possible to accompany him on a march from Pall Mall to Westminster to mark Colleges Week, a campaign organised by the Association of Colleges to raise the profile of further education (FE) and persuade the government to redress eight years of underfunding.

Read more.


Public school teachers to set up sixth form for middle classes.

Teachers from leading public schools plan to set up their own sixth-form as they say private education is now unaffordable for the middle classes.

A new kind of education is desperately needed because country lawyers, accountants and other well-heeled professionals are struggling to afford to send their children to fee-paying schools, according to the project’s founders.

Read more.


Arts leaders call for more school funding.

The Tate and the Royal Shakespeare Company (RSC) are calling for a premium to fund arts classes in England's schools.

The major arts institutions say league tables and pressures on time and budgets are squeezing out important creative subjects.

Six thousand 11 to 18-year-olds have described how the subjects help build their confidence, in new research.

The government says it is investing almost £500m in arts and music.

Creative subjects have been under pressure for a number of years, as many schools in England have devoted more time to core academic subjects.

    

The Tate and the RSC want steps taken to redress that decline.

Read more.


 

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