The Faiths and Civil Society Unit at Goldsmiths is launching its latest project:
RE 4 Real – What do school leavers really need to know about religion and belief?
The Faiths & Civil Society Unit (FCSU) at Goldsmiths, University of London is undertaking a cutting-edge project to explore what school leavers really need to know and understand about religion and belief in the contemporary world. This takes place in the context of a newly invigorated national conversation around the future of RE underway in the UK, which reveals a lack of clarity about how and where learning about religion and belief should take place, what it should consist of, and what it should be for.
This is pressing: billions of people around the world are religious, despite the assumptions of secularity; globalization and migration put us all into daily encounter with the full plurality of religion and belief in our personal and professional lives. Yet many Western societies have largely lost their religious literacy – the ability to talk well about religion and belief. – and misconceptions and stereotypes abound.
Schools can play a crucial role in shaping how young people engage with the presence and diversity of religion and belief in the world around them. This project will explore the contours through the views of teachers, parents, pupils and employers on what sorts of knowledge and skills school leavers should develop about religion and belief, and why they need them. These views will connect directly into ongoing discussions around RE and education more widely through a programme of engagement.
With funding from Culham St Gabriel’s Trust, a charity committed to excellence in RE through research, development and innovation, the project runs until July 2015, conducting over 200 interviews and focus groups in 20 schools across England.
For further information, or if you would like to be involved, please contact Martha Shaw at firstname.lastname@example.org.