Court protects Religious Education in NI, but ‘more attacks likely’

A ruling in favour of Religious Education (RE) by the Court of Appeal in Belfast last week has been welcomed by a member of Aontu, though she warned that more attacks will come.

‘Humanist’ parents had taken a case against State-run schools which provide only Christian-based RE on the grounds that excluding other worldviews breached their child’s human rights.

While the appeal court affirmed that such RE lacked a degree of critical objectivity, the judges ruled it did not amount to ‘indoctrination’ as the parents had full liberty to remove their children from RE class if they so wished.

Aontú Deputy Leader, and teacher, Gemma Brolly it’s “very welcome news because we’re living in a society where we’re constantly coming under attack for our Faith”.

“We have some of the highest standards pastorally and academically across the world. Yet we constantly hear in the North that it’s almost as if we’re standing children in the corner and driving Faith down their throats and it’s the complete opposite.

“As much as it is very welcome news, unfortunately I don’t think it will end or that it will be the last we’ll experience of discrimination or attacks because of our Faith,” she said.