Whilst there is not a National Curriculum for Religious Education (RE), all maintained schools must follow the National Curriculum requirements to teach a broad and balanced curriculum, which includes RE. All maintained schools therefore have a statutory duty to teach RE and must recognise diverse religions and systems of belief in the UK both locally and nationally.
The RE curriculum is determined by the local Standing Advisory Council on Religious Education (SACRE), which is responsible for producing the locally agreed syllabus for RE. For our school, this is the Sutton SACRE. Agreed syllabuses used in schools which are not designated with a religious character must “reflect the fact that the religious traditions in Great Britain are in the main Christian, while taking account of the teaching and practices of the other principal religions represented in Great Britain” (section 375 (3), Education Act 1996).
Across our federation, RE is provided for all pupils from nursery to Year 6 in line with the Sutton SACRE syllabus, and is inclusive and broad minded.
From Year 1 to Year 6, we use Discovery RE to plan and deliver lessons. An overview of their content for each term can be seen here.
Withdrawal from RE lessons
Parents may withdraw their children from RE lessons or any part of the RE curriculum and the school has a duty to supervise them, though not to provide additional teaching or to incur extra cost. All requests for withdrawal must be addressed to the Headteacher who will arrange for you to meet with a member of the Senior Leadership Team to discuss this further. The school does not support selective withdrawal from RE.
Where the pupil has been withdrawn, the law provides for alternative arrangements to be made for RE of the kind the parents want the pupil to receive. These arrangements will be made by the parents; the school is not expected to make these arrangements. The pupil may receive external RE teaching as long as the withdrawal does not significantly impact on the child’s attendance.