As western society’s embrace of a liberal secular ideology tightens, is there still a legitimate place for the Christian voice in the public square? As the government adopts an increasingly quasi-parental position in education, what response can parents make? In particular, how can Christian parents offer a faith perspective to their children and to their children’s schools, based on biblical principles?
The following articles are designed to inform parents about some of the current issues in education and its underpinning ideologies. They also offer a Christian perspective for a partnership that will enable children to plot a pathway through the school years and empower parents to express their faith in the particular context of their children’s school.
Who is responsible for a child’s education? The Bible is clear that parents are their children’s first and best educators. How does this work out in contemporary society? What is the role of Christian parents as they work in partnership with others to raise their children to know and love God?
Choosing the right school What should you look for when choosing a school? Should Christians home school, send their children to church or Christian schools, or support them as they work out biblical principles in a secular setting?
How can I contribute to the school community? A caring heart and a servant’s mind should define our interactions as Christians in community. Our children’s schools are no exception – some practical ways of missional living are suggested.
Teamwork with teachers Helping out, sweating the small stuff and what to do if things go wrong: how to be a Barnabas parent.
What is my child being taught in the curriculum? A brief outline of the ideologies that underpin the school curriculum, together with a Christian perspective offering a new way of teaching and learning.
What is my child being taught in PSHE? Secular thinking and cultural norms underpin much PSHE teaching. Help your children understand why the Christian faith can often seem counter-cultural.
What is my child being taught in RE? Where, in a pluralist society should the teaching of religion be positioned? What should be taught in school and what should be confined to home and church communities?
What is my child being taught in SMSC? A Christian perspective on British values, character education and why values need to be lived out in people’s lives to become virtues.
Defining progress An overview of how and why data is collected, how it is used and the implications for students. How can parents help their children to retain a sense of their worth to God in the current culture of measurement?
Wholeness and wellbeing God made us to be masterpieces, yet we face an epidemic of mental illness in our children and young people. How can parents protect their children?
Special Educational Needs and Disability People with special needs are marginalised in society and schools are no exception. Show your children how to respect and extend God’s love all their peers, no matter how different they may be.
The role of the church The church can empower parents to hold a different conversation from contemporary culture – one which talks about human flourishing of unique individuals made in the image of God. Explore some organisations which work in schools and colleges, enabling students to reflect on themselves as spiritual beings.
You can find out more about the faith-based organisations that work in schools and colleges in the Network section of this website, together with reviews of some of the books mentioned in the Resources section for teachers.