FAITH SCHOOLS

The existence of faith schools has become an increasingly controversial topic of debate, particularly since the Trojan Horse allegations shone a spotlight on the Birmingham Muslim community in July 2014 and the government responded with a British values agenda.

Traditionally, education in the UK was the province of the church (both Catholic and Church of England) long before it became part of state provision. Known as church schools until 1990, the designation was changed to faith schools to incorporate schools run by other faiths. They are known as schools of religious character. Under the new academy and free school programmes, schools can also be designated as having a faith ethos.

Faith schools  educate just over 1.8 million pupils, making up 37% of all state funded primary schools and 19% of secondary schools, a slight increase since 2000. Non-Christian faith schools include 48 Jewish, 18 Muslim, 8 Sikh and 4 Hindu.  Jewish schools have been part of maintained provision since the first half of the twentieth century. The first Muslim school was opened in 1998, the first Sikh school in 1999 and the first Hindu school in 2008.

The four pages in this section list:

Articles and blogs from a range of writers.

Documents and reports from the Department for Education, Hansard, Parliamentary archives and research organisations.

Media coverage of issues surrounding faith schools, listed in chronological order.

Web sites of organisations that have an interest in faith education.