PARENTS need to be informed about what special religious inst-ruction, being delivered in our Victorian government primary schools by the Christian group ACCESS Ministries, involves.
Special religious instruction is indoctrination aimed at primary schoolchildren.
ACCESS makes it clear their mission is to convert as many to the Christian faith as possible.
Two recent assessments of the material delivered during special religious instruction deem it of little educational value.
It’s not needed to teach the values which are embedded in the Victorian Essential Learning Standards already delivered by educators.
Special religious instruction divides our children at a time that is very important to them.
Those who opt-out (aren’t Christian) are withdrawn from their classroom and friends weekly and given menial tasks to fill in time.
The Australian Education Union and Parents Victoria don’t support special religious instruction during school hours and the department does not endorse the material being used by ACCESS Ministries.
Christian families have Christian school options and/or might instruct children in their faith out of school hours — this shouldn’t occur in secular public schools at a time our kids are sent to be educated.
It’s important that our government schools remain secular.
They might remain neutral and inclusive, or give religion enough significance to warrant religious education — being comparative and taught by professional educators (which is my preference).
It’s not OK to allow the continuation of special religious education delivered by ACCESS Ministries in secular state schools.
Anyone sharing this concern should write to their principal.
— D. SOMERS,
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