HL Deb 22 March 2000 vol 611 cc31-2WA
Lord Pilkington of Oxenford

asked Her Majesty's Government:

What steps they are taking to ensure that government policies on religious education conform with the law. [HL1534]

Baroness Blackstone

All maintained schools must provide RE and daily collective worship for all registered pupils and promote their spiritual, moral and cultural development. These requirements are set out in DfEE circular 1/94, which was sent to all schools. The requirements are underpinned by Ofsted inspections which report on the extent to which schools are meeting their statutory requirements, including those in relation to collective worship. Schools whose provision has been criticised following Ofsted inspection can seek support from their local Standing Advisory Committee on Religious Education. In addition, there is a statutory complaints procedure under which any individual can raise concerns about provisions relating to the school curriculum, including religious education and collective worship. Complaints must be dealt with by the local education authority, with ultimate right of appeal to my right honourable friend the Secretary of State for Education and Employment.