Challenges the national scenario in primary re
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CHALLENGES: THE NATIONAL SCENARIO IN PRIMARY RE. Shaping the Future of Primary RE John Keast, Chair of RE Council 30 November 2013. Outline. Preamble – W hat is the RE Council? What is happening in RE? RE in primary schools: Challenges Conclusion . Preamble: What is the RE Council?.

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Presentation Transcript
Challenges the national scenario in primary re


Shaping the Future of Primary RE

John Keast, Chair of RE Council

30 November 2013


  • Preamble – What is the RE Council?

  • What is happening in RE?

  • RE in primary schools: Challenges

  • Conclusion

Preamble what is the re council
Preamble: What is the RE Council?

  • Umbrella body for all RE community

  • 65 organisations in membership

    • Faith communities

    • Professional and academic organisations (including NATRE, ISRSA)

    • Voluntary groups

  • National united voice of RE working with and through its member organisations

  • Advocacy, liaison, policy and development

Current context of re
Current context of RE

  • Improvement 1995-2009

    • National Supportwith curriculum development, exemplification, qualifications, training parallel to the National Curriculum

    • Local Support, ie SACREs, LAs, local groups through NATRE

  • Changes since 2010

    • RE not required by statute in academies/FS: funding agreements only

    • Academies not required to teach RE according to LAS

    • Abolition of QC(D)A: no national support (2011)

    • Removal of all national exemplars and Programmes of Study (2011)

    • Exclusion of RS from EBacc (2011) and DfE review of the school curriculum

    • Discounting of GCSE short course in school performance

    • Decline in GCSE entries 2013

    • Reform and future of RS GCSEs unclear

    • Reduced targets and removal of bursaries for RE PGCE places – decline

    • No responses to APPG, Ofsted and REC reports

    • Most secondary schools now outside the remit of SACREs

    • Diminishing or no budgets for SACREs with loss of RE adviser posts

    • Some SACREs failing to meet and/or carry out duties

    • Virtual disappearance of local CPD

What is happening to re
What is happening to RE?

  • Dismantling national & undermining local support/structures

  • Consequences

    • Marginalisation, decline in status, provision and quality (other subs too)

    • Decline in qualifications with knock on effect to HE/Training

    • Fewer trained teachers, and little or no opportunity for CPD

    • Fragmentation of RE curriculum development and support

  • Evidence: Ofsted Report on RE: Realising its potential, 2013

  • Michael Gove “I have not done enough” for RE, Lambeth Palace Conference, 3 July 2013

  • RE Review

Re in primary schools challenges
RE in Primary schools – Challenges

  • For schools

  • For supporters and for the sector

  • For societySome apply to all schools and other subjects

Primary re challenges for schools
Primary RE – challenges for schools

  • Appreciation of what is being done with so little training, support and status

  • Ofsted

    • Who teaches RE

    • Problem of confidence

    • Deficit in subject knowledge

    • Lack of adequate training in ITE

    • Access to CPD and/or other forms of support

    • Role of subject leader

  • All worse because of pressure of accountability and SATS

Primary re challenges for supporters
Primary RE – Challenges for supporters

  • SACREs

    • role

      • Syllabus making less prominent in future (See RE Review)

      • Monitoring (see RE Review)

      • forum

    • Effectiveness

      • Capacity

      • size

      • cooperation

  • Advisers/consultants, Trainers

    • Adjustments to new structures/ways of working (See RE Review)

    • Local groups

    • Hubs (See RE Review)

Primary re challenges for society
Primary RE – Challenges for society

  • Religious literacy: vocabulary, stories, institutions

  • Intercultural education and navigation

  • Community and parental links

  • SMSC

How the rec is responding
How the REC is responding

RE community taking responsibility for RE in a new educational world with new working relationship with DfE


    • RE: The Truth Unmasked March 2013

    • Contribution of RE to community relations (2014)

  • RE Review (parallel to NC) launched last month

    • New national Curriculum Framework for RE (NSFRE)

      • Restated aims, core curriculum, assessment, guidance

    • Six other recommendations

  • RE Expert Subject Advisory Group

  • Implementation parallel to NC implementation

  • Qualifications reform- REC role

  • RE Quality Mark

  • Young ambassadors for RE

  • Links with trusts, heads and governors being made

  • Primary re conclusion
    Primary RE – Conclusion

    • New educational era

    • Many challenges

    • Primary teachers adaptable and resilient

    • RE community organising itself

    • RE is on the up?