Proposals from the Church of England to reduce religious discrimination in school admissions is welcome but does not go far enough, the British Humanist Association has stated. The BHA was responding to comments from the Rt Revd John Pritchard, Bishop of Oxford, who said that admissions policies favouring religious children should be changed, limiting discrimination to 10% of admissions from the current permission to discriminate on all places.
BHA Chief Executive Andrew Copson stated: ‘Any reduction in discrimination has to be welcomed but it remains outrageous that 100% publicly funded schools are permitted to discriminate against children and parents on grounds of religion at all. We would encourage all people within the Church of England who believe in social justice, equality and fair access to public services to seek a total end to discrimination in their schools, on other religious groups to do the same, and on the government to end its support of religiously selective and segregated education at the public expense.’
The British Humanist Association (BHA) is the national charity supporting and representing non-religious people who seek to lead ethical lives without supernatural or superstitious beliefs. Committed to human rights, democracy, equality and mutual respect, the BHA works for an open and inclusive society with freedom of belief and speech, and for an end to the privileged position of religion – the established church in particular – in law, education, broadcasting and wherever else it occurs. Visit us at http://www.humanism.org.uk/