Councillors' Attendance Statistics
Agenda and minutes
Standing Advisory Council on Religious Education
Tuesday, 9 November 2010 7:00 pm
Venue: Room 7, York House, Richmond Road, Twickenham, TW1 3AA
Contact: Sam Walker, Democratic Services Officer, 020 8891 7156, Email: email@example.com
ELECTION OF A CHAIRMAN
That Councillor Chappell be elected to serve as Chairman of SACRE for a period of 4 years.
To approve the minutes of the meeting held on 23 February 2009 and 16 June 2010 Attached
The minutes of the meetings on 23 February and 16 June 2010 were agreed as a correct record of proceedings and the Chairman authorised to sign them.
MEMBERSHIP TO SACRE AND TERMS OF REFERENCE
· To seek the committee’s views on the revised terms of reference
· To consider developing the new SACRE membership list
· To consider a request to co-opt a Humanist representative on SACRE
The Committee considered the new terms of reference for SACRE.
Councillor Gibbons asked if the terms of reference would apply to academies, and would SACREs influence over them be different?
(update from “Religious Education in English Schools: Non-Statutory Guidance 2010”: All academies are required, through their funding agreements, to teach RE.
o For academies without a religious character, this will be the locally
o For denominational academies with a religious character (Church of
England or Roman Catholic – but also Muslim and most Jewish
academies), this will be in line with the denominational syllabus.
o For non-denominational (such as Christian) faith academies this
can be either of the above, depending on the wishes of the sponsor
and what is agreed by Ministers.)
The Clerk highlighted paragraph 6 of the terms of reference that stated one member from three of the four representative groups needed to be present for meetings to be quorate.
The Committee considered the membership of SACRE. It was agreed that the committee needed representatives from the following faith backgrounds: Baha’i, Hindu, Jewish and the Diocese of London. The Committee also needed Teacher’s Association representatives.
· Mr Laher agreed to discuss SACREs membership with the Council’s Interfaith Forum.
· Mrs Singh agreed to discuss SACREs membership with the Hindu temples of Hounslow.
· Pat Alden agreed to discuss SACREs membership with the schools of the borough.
The Committee considered a request to co-opt a Humanist representative onto SACRE.
· That the terms of reference, as presented in the report, be approved.
· That the committee approve the co-option of a Humanist representative.
MATTERS ARISING FROM THE MINUTES
· Youth parliament update
· RE in the news
Youth Parliament Update
Kathrine Pearce and Kallum Brunner, from the Youth Parliament, presented the Committee with a video presentation. The presentation focussed on the Youth Parliament members roles within the organisation. The members explained why they joined and their achievements to date.
Katherine and Kallum were concerned about potential cuts to Youth Parliament funding. They appealed to the Committee to help promote the profile of the Youth Parliament.
Councillor Naylor said he had attended a Friends of Heatham House meeting. A review of youth facility funding was in progress and any cuts would be discussed openly. He said, so far, no cuts had been agreed for Heatham House.
Councillors Bond, Chappell and Naylor offered their support to Heatham House. They agreed to visit Heatham House to show their support and to build relations with the Council, SACRE and the Youth Parliament.
The Committee agreed that Katherine and Kallum be nominated as co-opted members to SACRE.
· That the Committee approve Kallum Brunner and Katherine Pearce as co-opted of Richmond SACRE.
R.E in the news
There was no relevant RE news to report.
Presentation on effective SACREs guidance from NASACRE
The Committee Clerk presented the “Effective SACREs” training DVD. He explained that this was a very useful resource for all members as it clearly explained the role of SACRE and members responsibilities.
There was a spare copy of the DVD available for Committee Members.
· To look at a report called Transforming Religious Education from the annual SACRE meeting
· School academy update
Pat Alden presented this item. Transforming RE had been the subject of discussion at the annual SACRE meeting, which she attended. Pat explained that Richmond SACRE supported the work of Primary RE through termly RE Panel meetings, which she organised.
The Transforming RE discussion had drawn out the following recommendations:
· The Department for Education should, along with the relevant delivery partners:
carry out a review of the current statutory arrangements for the local determination of the RE curriculum, to ensure that these provide the best means of promoting the high quality and consistency of RE in schools,
· establish stronger mechanisms for supporting and holding to account the work of local authorities, Standing Advisory Councils on Religious Education, and Agreed Syllabus Conferences in relation to RE,
· establish clearer national guidance for Standing Advisory Councils on Religious Education and Agreed Syllabus Conferences about the nature and use of key concepts in RE, the definition of progression, and the use of enquiry skills in RE in the design of agreed syllabuses,
· provide more guidance on teaching about Christianity and non-religious world views, and effective ways of balancing the need to foster respect for pupils’ religions and beliefs with the promotion of open, critical, investigative learning in RE.
The Office of Qualifications and Examinations Regulation (OfQual) should:
· review, and as necessary adjust, the short course GCSE specifications in religious studies to ensure that they are securing a stronger focus on extending students’ ability to understand the place of religion and belief in contemporary society.
· Now that Ofsted were no longer providing subject specific reports there was more emphasis upon SACRE to monitor the provision for RE in schools.
Handouts were provided to members and they were asked to consider the content of the report.
School Academy Update
Pat explained that all academies were required, through their funding agreements, to teach RE. Collective worship could be creative but must be provided.
It was important that SACRE knew if new academies were opening so that SACRE could offer them advice.
Elizabeth Rowley explained that the local authority would be co-sponsors of the boroughs academies and could advise from this position. The committee asked what level of input SACRE could provide through the Council’s joint sponsorship of academies.
(Update from the Councils Education department: As Academies are independent of the local authority, the latter’s influence over their policies is limited. However, there are local authority representatives on the academy councils (the governing body equivalents) at Hampton Academy and Twickenham Academy, and on the governing body of Richmond Park Academy. Therefore SACRE is advised to submit their views to those representatives.)
The committee noted that there were no primary academies in Richmond borough at that time.
UPDATE FROM PAT ALDEN
· RE Panel
· Celebrating RE
· RE – Silience
Pat fed back the discussion from the recent RE Panel meeting. The panel discussed ways to encourage schools to celebrate religious festivals through RE in 2011. Funding and a range of initiatives were available to help achieve this.
Alison Edwards asked why secondary schools were not involved in the RE Panel. Pat explained that she had only been requested to work with primary schools but she would be happy to help if the Council advised her to. Pat agreed to discuss the RE Panel and secondary schools, at greater length, with Alison.
Pat explained that the “RE – Silience” newsletter had been recently published.
RE Siliencewas a self evaluation, planning and training tool for RE teachers. Its purpose was to help teachers’ addressing contentious issues in RE, particularly where such issues could be used to justify extremism and violence. RE Silience had recently been approved by the RE Council (REC).
Pat announced that she had published an introduction pack called “Religion and Art”. The aim of the pack was to teach RE in the context of art. It was available to committee members who were interested.
Pat suggested that the Interfaith Forum officer should be invited to the next SACRE meeting.
Mrs Singh suggested that SACRE start swapping their minutes with the Interfaith Forum again.
Mr Laher said it would be a good idea to produce a list of places of worship in the borough.
The committee noted that there was no Interfaith Week this year.
Pat explained she had been contacted by several schools who wanted reputable individuals to teach about faiths. The schools wanted teachers who could teach objectively. She appealed to the members of the committee to submit any recommendations.
OFSTED INSPECTION REPORTS
No significant reports to present.
There were no Ofsted school reports to note.
ANY OTHER BUISNESS
Mrs Singh announced the Expressions of Faith event on Saturday 20 November (http://www.hounslowfriendsoffaith.org/page1.aspx)
The committee provisionally agreed to hold the next SACRE meeting on Tuesday 8 February 2011.