While public schools are not supposed to support one particular religious belief, neither should a school require others to accept religious or anti-religious beliefs. Jim McCollum was the only child in his elementary school not participating in religious classes. Religion and American education: Rethinking a national dilemma. As an ideal, reasonable pluralism describes a society, comprised of many conceptions of the good, in which reasonable persons, as citizens, willingly support a political conception of justice that is not grounded in comprehensive truth claims but by principles they may endorse in light of their common human reason. Thanks for linking up to #BloggerClubUK Pennock, R. (2007). Feinberg, W. (2006). This article is distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution Noncommercial License which permits any noncommercial use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original author(s) and source are credited. Isn’t that what we want for our children? Debbie, I totally agree with you, it frustrates me no end that in a non-faith school my kids are still expected to pray in assemblies or are taught bible stories. Religion and multicultural education, vol. Liberal citizenship and the search for an overlapping consensus: The case of Muslim minorities. The idea of an overlapping consensus. It’s nice to know I’m not alone with my views. In R. Curren (Ed. mattkt Posts: 1,575. New York: Teachers College Press. Pupils may be stimulated to discuss religious ideals and be critical about them, but they also need to learn that they have to respect the right of others to have ideals they themselves believe to be unjust, wrong or simplistic. 36(4), 573–587. Religion is everywhere. 2000 or Jackson et al. The importance of ideals in education. Similar to our Christian example, most Islamic and liberal ideals have a complementary relationship, and Muslims normally support the political institutions that help to make their life a rather good one (see Malik 2001, 2004; March 2006). Pupils who have religious ideals that do not cohere with those of a liberal democracy, should learn that they are nevertheless entitled to have these, i.e. Some have questioned whether religious education simpliciter or religious schools can be justified (see McLaughlin 1984, 1985; Callan 1985; Dwyer 1998; De Ruyter and Miedema 2000; Hand 2004). Parental rights and the religious upbringing of children. We do not wish to suggest that the religious domain is necessarily foundational for the other kinds of ideals, although for some groups, most particularly fundamentalist believers, this will be the case. For the majority of Muslims in the West, Islamic ideals and practices normally do not conflict with the ideals of reasonable pluralism. I completely agree with you though. Consider how many deeply religious persons feel profoundly uncomfortable with the manner in which pluralism appears to govern public life. ideals that are oriented towards the divine or are characteristic of one’s relation to the divine. Well done for tackling this thorny issue head on! These two qualities are also articulated as two moral powers: a capacity for a sense of justice and a capacity for a conception of the good. Fundamentalists and orthodox believers represent only one group within the enormous diversity of religious persons, and quite a distinct one. They are a huge part of our collective history - to omit all mention of them would be shameful ignorance. If religion is banned from schools, it would be unconstitutional to religious students who want to worship during school days, turning religious freedom into freedom from religion. ‘Religious ideals’ is the generic name of a category consisting of a wide range of specific religious types of ideals, for instance Christian, Islamic, Buddhist, Hindu, Sikh, Bahai’ ideals. Schools do not only aim to teach children basic things, but also help them become good adults. Next time, I’ll have ago in the summer when it’s not raining. McLaughlin, T. H. (1984). Absolutely. The distinctiveness of Catholic education. Let them explore what speaks to them in their hearts and minds. Seemingly endless choices and opportunities provide little comfort to those whose ultimate religious ideals decisively trump other ideals. We suggest that there are three possible evaluations, both with regard to the ideals as well as their pursuit: they can be complementary to, neutral, and opposite to the ideals of a liberal democracy. Middle East Policy, That being said, religion in schools is something I feel strongly about and I’m happy to have that debate. It should not be hidden and relegated to churches, synagogues or mosques. We draw our examples of religious ideals from Christianity and Islam, because these religions have most adherents in Western liberal democracies that are the focus of this article. Denominational schools can reasonably be expected to offer a variety of religious ideals too, but because their position with regard to religion(s) is profoundly different from public schools we will not pursue that line of defense here. Most Christian ideal characteristics of a person are also complementary to those valued in liberal democracies. All religions should be banned on a global scale. 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