Venue: Council Chamber, Catmose, Oakham
Contact: Kit Silcock 01572 720976
Apologies were received from Julie Barnwell, Gurdev Singh and Aga Cahn.
ELECTION OF CHAIRMAN AND VICE-CHAIRMAN
The Governance officer opened the meeting and asked for nominations for the position of Chairman. Mrs Stephenson was nominated by Mrs Powell and seconded by Mr Menzies. There being no other nominations, a vote was taken and a unanimous vote for Mrs Stephenson was given.
Mrs Stephenson took the Chair and asked for nominations for the position of Vice-Chairman. Mrs Powell was nominated by Mrs Stephenson and seconded by Mr Menzies and received a unanimous vote in favour of her appointment.
1. That Mrs Stephenson be APPOINTED Chair of SACRE
2. That Mrs Powell be APPOINTED Vice-Chair of SACRE
RECORD OF MEETING
To confirm the minutes of the meeting of the Rutland SACRE held on 9 July 2019 (previously circulated).
The record of the meeting of the Rutland Standing Advisory Council on Religious Education (SACRE) held on 9 July 2019 was confirmed as a correct record and signed by the Chair.
To review the Rutland SACRE Annual Report 2018/19.
During discussion the following comments were made:
· Mr Singh, who was unable to attend the meeting, had sent his comments to the Chair and remarked that the Annual Report read positively and that it embraced the challenges ahead.
· The Chair was happy with the revisions that had been made to the introduction of the report.
COMMISSION ON RELIGIOUS EDUCATION REPORT RECOMMENDATIONS
To review four of the recommendations set out by the Commission on Religious Education.
1. A change of name for Religious Education to ‘Religion and World Views’ so as to reflect the nature of the world today.
2. National Entitlement: does this SACRE support the requirement for a National Entitlement in all publicly funded schools?
3. The need for OFSTED to incorporate clear reporting on this subject in its reports.
4. Supporting the removal of the right to withdraw children from RE lessons.
During discussion the following points were noted:
· It was reported that the Church in Wales had already changed the name of Religious Education (RE) to Religious World Views and had stopped parents being able to remove their children from these lessons.
· Reverend Holmes clarified that there was a Church of England and a Church in Wales. England was a state religion and in Wales it was not, which meant that they did not have the same restrictions that applied here.
· The Chair asked whether the Committee should be providing a formal response to the recommendations and all Members agreed that they should be challenging the Commission to debate the issues.
· The National SACRE had called for individual SACREs to respond to the recommendations
· If the Committee was saying that RE was an essential part of a child’s education then it should be included and explicitly mentioned in OFSTED reports.
· The Committee felt that the recommendations warranted further debate and agreed that recommendation 1 and 4 would be considered again at the January SACRE meeting and recommendations 2 and 3 at the March meeting by which time there should be some reports that gave an indication of the inspection framework.
· Mrs Fitton would put together documentation to provide further background information on the recommendations and would circulate it to the rest of the group before the next meetings.
For the group to review the 2018/19 development plan and suggest items to be included in the 2019/20 plan.
During discussion the following comments were noted:
· Mr Singh in his emailed comments to the Chair, had requested that SACRE consider each strategy in turn and ask themselves “how did the child benefit from the work on this area?” .It should then focus most of its energies where the child benefited most.
· The Plan should be clearer on how success was measured.
Management of SACRE and partnership with the Local Authority
· The partnership between the Local Authority and SACRE was a statutory requirement.
· Members questioned whether management of the committee should include monitoring attendance and representation.
· The Committee agreed that there should be an additional column to the Plan, headed Outcomes, which would enable SACRE to monitor success.
Effectiveness of Locally Agreed Syllabus
· Reverend Holmes shared with the group a hard copy of the syllabus that was now available from the Diocese of Peterborough.
· The Peterborough syllabus was not an agreed syllabus and differed from the syllabus which every SACRE had and that lasted for five years.
· Not all the major religions and world views were taught at the different Key Stages.
· Assessing effectiveness was subjective unless specific measures such as GCSE or A level take-up were used.
· Members suggested that the strategy heading “Effectiveness of Locally Agreed Syllabus” should be replaced with the “Effectiveness of Cross-Curriculum Links”.
To engage all Rutland schools with SACRE and promote sharing of good practice and standing RE
· Engagement with Rutland schools was critical and should be the main focus of SACRE
· RE had been promoted as part of the wider curriculum in Rutland schools by integrating RE into the Council’s promoting literacy project.
· Council educational initiatives were open to all schools, regardless of whether they were academies or not. All 17 Rutland primary schools had engaged with the literacy project and all attendees had been recorded.
· A pupil voice conference for the children of service families had been an opportunity to engage with schools to think about their curriculum.
· In contrast to OFSTED, the Council were not notified about the release of any SIAMS (School Inspection Anglican and Methodist Schools) reports and would have to go looking for the information.
· Schools had requested more information on other religions and how they linked to the history curriculum; for example the Sikhs who fought in WW1
Put together a list of Visits and Visitors for all schools to help promote community cohesion and understanding of different faiths.
· Rather than having just a list of providers, it would be more useful to monitor and review the number of visits by representatives of the different faiths.
Review of Collective Worship
· There was confusion between what should be covered in a collective worship and how that differed from material covered in an RE lesson.
· Schools often asked for additional materials for their collective worship.
· Most secondary schools did not have collective worship.
· The theme of a collective worship should be considered in the context of what was happening at school at that time.
· Humanists did not like the ... view the full minutes text for item 296.
To receive an update from Mrs A Fitton regarding training and network meetings, and any further updates from members of the group.
Work was continuing on training and network meetings were in place.
ANY OTHER BUSINESS
Ms Lizzie Papworth would be taking over from Mrs Gill Curtis as the Council’s lead officer to the Committee. The Chair thanked Mrs Curtis for all her hard work for Rutland SACRE and this was echoed by all the other members of the committee.
DATE OF NEXT MEETING:
Tuesday 21 January 2020 at 4.30pm in the Council Chamber.
Tuesday 21 January 2019 at 4.30pm.