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Casting the net too narrowly

Discussion in 'Workplace dilemmas' started by lightningconductor, Oct 31, 2015.

  1. lightningconductor

    lightningconductor New commenter

    From a survey broadcast by the BBC:
    The figures also found while 57% classified themselves as Christian, fewer than 10% actually go to church.
    During half-term, I was in conversation with a friend who works at a 'Christian' school. She was bemoaning the poor quality of candidates who presented themselves for an SLT position recently and put it down to the school's insistence that all SLT positions are filled by practising Christians (who must obtain a reference from their vicar).
    This raises a question about whether schools with religious affiliations and a consequent insistence on SLT members being drawn from that religion are restricting the quality of their management. After all, logic suggests that the 'best' candidates won't always be found in the <10% who are churchgoers.
    Is my friend right when suggested that actively excluding >90% of the potential applicants is madness? Does the ability to 'boast' that (for example) the Director of Studies is a practising Christian trump the ability to 'boast' that they were the best from an excellent group of candidates drawn from the entire cross-section of appropriately qualified and experienced teachers?
    I hope this generates an interesting. debate.
  2. monicabilongame

    monicabilongame Star commenter

    It may do provided it doesn't descend into a slanging match between people who think God exists and who are determined to Save Everyone From Hell, and those who think God does not exist and are determined to Prove How Silly the concept of religion is. I'm not holding my breath!
    sally90 likes this.
  3. Ladykaza

    Ladykaza Senior commenter

    I am an atheist and so wouldn't apply for a post leading a church school as it would be hypocritical of me to go through all the rituals etc.

    It seems clear that these schools are restricting themselves by this stipulation, however I do appreciate the principle.

    Is the wider question , should religious groups be running state schools at all? Should the promotion of one faith, or indeed one branch of one faith, be the all pervading principle of a state school?

    Still in these days of free schools , where any numpty with the ear of Westminster can be given squillions to start up their own schools, at least the churches have a decent track record!
  4. TheoGriff

    TheoGriff Star commenter


    No reason why it should descend into that

    This is not an Opinion forum but a help and support forum, for giving advice.

    Perhaps the @lightningconductor would get a good discussion going on this topic on Education news?

    Best wishes

    sally90 and monicabilongame like this.
  5. johnberyl

    johnberyl Occasional commenter

    sally90 likes this.
  6. lightningconductor

    lightningconductor New commenter

    Thanks for your suggestion Theo - I wasn't really sure where to start this discussion so plumped for 'Dilemmas' as a 'least worst fit' option.
    I may repost.
    Re Monicabilongame's comment:I don't think it should be a 'believe or not believe' issue. I was more interested in whether contributors could argue the point one way or the other. My friend gave a vigorous argument against the policy when I talked to her recently!
    Re Johnberl's comment: The post in question is in a school with a 'Special Religious Character', which, if I understand the information correctly, allows it to set such a requirement at its own discretion.
    Re Ladykaza: I too can appreciate a stance on principle. However, I wonder whether such a principle should override the 'duty' (as I would see it) to recruit the best candidate for each and every post in the school and whether this duty is best served by adding this condition.
  7. Kartoshka

    Kartoshka Established commenter

    I think it is perfectly reasonable to expect SLT in a Christian school to be Christians. However, it does seem too restrictive to insist that they are practising Christians. How does attending or not attending church impact on someone's ability to do the job well?
  8. Ladykaza

    Ladykaza Senior commenter

    To quote Any from 'Big Bang Theory' - I have no issue with the concept of a deity but I'm confused by one who takes attendance'

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