Working together to strengthen the provision of religious education

April 2018

REC news

Commission on Religious Education

Members' news

Conferences and events

CPD and resources

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Upcoming RE Council Meetings in 2018

Annual General Meeting: 
10th May, 11am - 4pm
Location: Conway Hall, 25 Red Lion Square, London WC1R 4RL.

Second Regular General Meeting:
Date: 7th November, 11am - 4pm
Location: Jewish Museum London, 129-131 Albert Street, London, NW1 7NB

'Religious Literacy' Facebook Quiz

Ever wondered how religiously literate you are? Click here to take our new Facebook quiz and find out!

Please feel free to share this link within your own forums / social media pages.

RE Quality Mark news

The RE Quality Mark is a REC project celebrating good RE in schools across England, Wales and Northern Ireland. REQM award holders (see our map) are being surveyed for their comments  on the impact of the award and the results of the survey are on the website. A full review of the REQM criteria and process is underway with partners this year. The review has been generously funded by the Culham St Gabriel's Trust.

Assessor training
REQM assessors attend training at least every three years, and they are kept in touch by e-mail in the meantime.  The next assessor training session in London (26th June). 

REQM conference and events
The RE: Quality Matters conference will be held at the University of Huddersfield on Saturday 16 June. We are delighted that the keynote is Dr Kevin O’Grady (Lead Consultant for Research, Culham St Gabriel's Trust) speaking on ‘Transforming RE through research? The Culham St Gabriel's Trust research strategy and how you can be part of it'.

This event is free to all REQM award holders currently listed on our database and to invited schools from the university's networks. There is a maximum of 50 places available so please book early! Booking will close on 25 May.
  •  Email to find out more.
  •  Let us know if you have ideas you would like to share
FREE REQM assessments
Thanks to generous funding from The Westhill Trust the RE Council is able to offer FREE RE Quality Mark assessments to a limited number of schools in the West Midlands, Staffordshire, Warwickshire, Shropshire, Worcestershire and Herefordshire. A grant from the St Matthias Trust means we can also offer subsidised REQM assessments to eligible schools in Bristol, Bath and Wells, Gloucester and Somerset. 

For updates, please follow the REQM on Twitter @REQualityMark.

Beyond the Ordinary campaign

The RE Council recently put out a press release regarding the shortage of specialist RE teachers. There was a lot of media interest, outlets that picked up the piece include:

Commission on Religious Education

The Commission on Religious Education (CoRE) met on 16 March at the Jerusalem Chamber, Westminster Abbey. This room has a significant place in the history of England and the United Kingdom. Henry IV died there, the Westminster meetings of the scholars who translated what became known as the King James Bible were held there, and in 1646 during the Commonwealth the Presbyterian Westminster Confession was compiled there. Commissioners discussed a national plan for RE including how classroom teachers could be supported in their work.

REC member organisations are kindly requested to encourage their members and colleagues to keep up-to-date with the work of the Commission on Religious Education (CoRE) by subscribing to the REC newsletter (this can be done at the bottom of the REC homepage), or by checking the latest news on the Commission’s website , and following the Commission on Twitter @CommissionOnRE

Hindu Council UK: Exploring Philosophy of Religion

The Hindu Council have produced a presentation on the issue of exploring Philosophy of Religion at Eton College. 

Click here to view the video on YouTube.

Sadaqa Day at the Al Khoei Foundation 

Al Khoei Foundation's Sadaqa Day project took place at the Imam Khoei Islamic Centre on Sunday March 18th. 

Families of volunteers from both the Brondesbury Park Synagogue synagogue and the Al Khoei Foundation came to the Imam Khoei Centre to donate items to St Laurence Larder. A parent from Al Sadiq and Al Zahra Schools presented a painting from a previous joint venture to the Brondesbury Park Synagogue. 

Canterbury Christ Church University

Public Lectures
Canterbury Christ Church University is running a series of public lectures around science, religion and education. Our Chair, Professor Trevor Cooling, is giving one exploring the development of his thinking over his career as a science graduate turned RE teacher and practising Christian from an evangelical background.

Please click here for further details.

Updates from LASAR (Learning About Science & Relgion) Project
Published! Our new publication – ‘A Teacher’s Guide to Science and Religion in the Classroom’ is now available from Amazon:
For information on upcoming schools events and all our LASAR Project news please find our Spring Newsletter at;

Institute of Jainology

On Wednesday, 28th March 2018 the Institute of Jainology and Jain APPG hosted an event at the House of Commons to celebrate 'Mahavir Janma Kalyanak’ - the birth of Mahavir, the 24th Jina. Members of Parliament, heads of Jain organisations and members of the community enjoyed keynotes from Lord Jitesh Gadhia and Sachin Shah leader of Harrow Council, both encouraging young people to play a greater role in public life. The evening also celebrated the OneJain lifetime and community awards to Mr Manhar Mehta and Mr Jayant Doshi respectively. Both have contributed greatly to the Jain community in the UK. The final speeches on eradicating leprosy, and encouraging organ donation in the community ended the evening on a charitable note.
To read more about the event, the award citations and keynote speeches, please visit 
A twitter summary of the event and photos can be seen here.

20:20 RE: Practice, Policy and Powerful Knowledge

Four RE professional associations are collaborating to produce an exciting conference on Religious Education and we invite proposals for seminars and workshops. The Association of RE Advisers, Inspectors and Consultants (AREIAC), the Association of University Lecturers in Religion and Education (AULRE), the National Association of SACREs (NASACRE) and the National Association of Teachers of RE (NATRE), along with Culham St Gabriel's Trust, are working together at a time of crucial change, development and opportunity for RE.

Date: Saturday 13 – Sunday 14 October 2018
Venue: De Vere Cranage Estate Hotel, Crewe
Cost: £175, with a concessionary rate for serving teachers presenting and delegates new to the national scene.

The aim of the conference will be to enhance the quality of religious education by drawing together professionals in RE – teachers at primary, secondary and special schools, academics, researchers, advisers, and providers of professional development. All delegates will be able to access the new subject knowledge, practical and research insights that can promote a more religiously literate society based on shared values. 

The conference organisers warmly invite proposals for a practical workshop, academic seminar, or talk, in one of the breakout sessions. We will consider all proposals and reserve the right to accept, reject or combine proposals where appropriate.

Jewish Museum: Outreach Loan Boxes

Our specially designed curriculum based loan boxes bring authentic Jewish objects into your classroom to support your students to learn about belief and practice in Judaism. 

‘My pupils loved it! The chance to interact with authentic artefacts from the Jewish faith is rare for them.’ – KS2 Teacher, Worcestershire

Early Years & KS1
Topics: Welcome to Judaism, Special Words, Jewish New Year, Shabbat, Special People, Hanukah 

Topics: Welcome to Judaism, The Ten Commandments, Synagogue, Sukkot, Havdalah, Mezuzah & Other Jewish Symbols

KS3, 4 & 5
Topics: Welcome to Judaism, Kashrut Laws, Marriage, Charity and Social Justice, Nature of God, Rosh Hashanah/Yom Kippur

Interested in Booking?
Next Steps
1. You need to be an outside of London school
2. Decide which Term works best with your scheme of work
3. Contact us by email or phone: / 020 7284 7384

AREIAC Conference 2018: ‘REflecting Plurality in RE’

The Association of RE Advisers Inspectors and Consultants (AREIAC) summer conference will be taking place in Bristol on 2nd and 3rd July 2018.

The theme this year is 'REflecting plurality in RE’ and speakers include Denise Cush, Professor of Religion and Education at Bath Spa University; Bob Jackson, Emeritus Professor, University of Warwick; and Dr Farid Panjwani, Director, Centre for Research and Evaluation in Muslim Education (CREME), UCL Institute of Education, University College London.

Delegates can attend for one or both days and the conference is open to anyone interested in promoting excellence in RE.

For more information and to make a booking please contact conference organiser Gill Vaisey at or visit the AREIAC website

AULRE 2018: Framing Knowledge, Power and the Professional and AULRE AGM

AULRE 2018: Framing Knowledge, Power and the Professional  (including the AULRE AGM with elections) will be taking place at Heythrop College, London, UK, on 10th - 11th May (starting around mid-day of the 10th and finishing by 5 pm on the 11th) 

Keynote speakers: Professor Julian Stern (York St John University); Dr Daniel Moulin-Stożek (Daniel Jubilee Centre for Character and Virtues, University of Birmingham. 

Panel discussion on knowledge-based curriculum design including Dr Mark Chater (Director of Education, Culham St Gabriels) and Dr Barbara Wintersgill (Editor of Big Ideas for RE and other keynotes to be confirmed.

The call for papers is open with 14th February being the deadline for abstract submissions. Abstracts should be sent to Confirmation of acceptance will be given within 7 working days of receipt of abstracts (excluding public holidays). The conference cost will be around £150 excluding overnight accommodation. For information, visit the AULRE website.

Teaching about Christianity as a world faith in RE

Where in the world? is an active 2-hour CPD session from Barnabas in Schools for primary teaching staff, that explains how to creatively teach about Christianity as a world faith, using a broader, more diverse range of expressions to those normally experienced in the UK. The course’s resource book has recently been accredited for use with the National Society’s Understanding Christianity project. A similarly-themed Barnabas RE Day of drama, storytelling and discussion is also available for lessons in primary schools and academies.

 Funding and Professional Development for RE teachers

Culham St Gabriel’s Trust exists to support and promote excellence in RE. Here are some ways we and our partners might help you and your colleagues:

RE Professional Development Portal

All the latest professional development opportunities in RE are tweeted and retweeted via the RE PD Portal Twitter account @RE_PDPortal.

The RE PD portal is managed by the REC and is a one-stop shop for teachers of RE to find out about professional development opportunities of all kinds. The portal includes a database of courses across the UK and online. If you are offering any PD courses, workshops, or other provisions over the next academic year, please get in touch or submit your opportunity using the submissions form. If you are a PD provider and would like to receive the half-termly call for submissions, sign up to the mailing list here
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Religious Education Council 
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