08 November 2001
The Church of England Board of Education has issued a Statement in response to the Government's White Paper on education, Schools Achieving Success.
In the Statement (attached below), the Board welcomes the general approach to raising standards in secondary education outlined in the paper together with the Government's proposals for raising the profile of the teaching profession.
The Board welcomes the Government's proposals for supporting the development of inclusive schools that have a religious character. It states that the Church of England is committed to an inclusive approach to education and is opposed to the notion of segregation in education. The Statement points out that the Church of England is committed to providing education in areas of social disadvantage.
The Statement affirms the Board's support for the establishment of faith schools that are inclusive communities and that have meaningful links to other schools. It expresses the Board's support for other faith communities to sponsor such schools.
Earlier this year, Lord Dearing's report on Church of England Schools, The Way ahead: Church of England schools in the new millennium, recommended that any new Church of England schools should be distinctively Christian but inclusive communities that reflect the composition of the neighbourhood. The report also suggested that all Church schools should seek to admit some children from other faiths and of no faith in order to enrich the educational experience of the school community.
Lord Dearing's report is to be debated by the General Synod on 15 November 2001. The Secretary of State for Education and Skills (Rt Hon Estelle Morris MP) is due to address the Synod about the Government's White Paper on 14 November 2001.