The law provides a basic curriculum for schools, which includes religious education and the national curriculum subjects. Religious education, unlike the subjects of the national curriculum, is determined at a local level. North Tyneside (Local Authority) has a statutory duty to set up a ‘Standing Advisory Council for Religious Education’ (SACRE) whose duties include the provision and monitoring of religious education and collective worship. As part of its responsibilities towards religious education, the SACRE establishes a syllabus which is reviewed every five years. The North Tyneside Agreed Syllabus for Religious Education is a revision of the one produced in 2006. This syllabus is the legal basis for Religious Education for schools in North Tyneside. Religious Education at Riverside Primary School ensures that during their school life pupils encounter all of the principal religions represented in thUnited Kingdom:
Religious education provokes challenging questions about the ultimate meaning and purpose of life, beliefs about God, the self and the nature of reality, issues of right and wrong and what it means to be human. It develops pupils’ knowledge and understanding of Christianity, other principal religions including Buddhism, Hinduism, Islam, Judaism and Sikhism. It enables pupils to learn about other religious traditions and other world views that offer answers to those questions. It offers opportunities for personal reflection and spiritual development. It enhances pupils’ awareness and understanding of religions and beliefs, teachings, practices and forms of expression, as well as of the influence of religion on individuals, families, communities and cultures. It enables pupils to think about this country’s faiths and values in a multicultural society. Religious education encourages pupils to learn from different religions, beliefs, values and traditions while exploring their own beliefs and questions of meaning. It challenges pupils to reflect on, consider, analyse, interpret and evaluate issues of truth, equality, belief, faith and ethics and to communicate their responses. Religious education encourages pupils to develop their sense of self worth, identity and belonging. It enables them to flourish individually within their communities and as citizens in a plural society and global community. Religious education has an important role in preparing pupils for adult life, employment and lifelong learning. It enables pupils to develop respect for, sensitivity to and acceptance of others, in particular those whose faiths and beliefs are different from their own. It promotes discernment and enables pupils to combat prejudice and racism. In the current climate, religious education also raises awareness of radicalisation and supports pupils who are feeling unsafe.
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