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Job market for non Christian RE teachers

Discussion in 'Religious Education' started by molari, Jun 4, 2012.

  1. 576

    576 Established commenter

    I too have taught in a school where these 2 were considered bed-fellows and personally I don't like it.
    They are complementary but so are maths and physics and you don't find schools bundling them together.

     
  2. fpno@another.com

    fpno@another.com New commenter

    Durgamata
    I have pm'd you.
     
  3. I absolutely disagree. We have been teaching a combined unit for our Year 9's in this last year. We have done an equality unit and a crime and justice unit. The knowledge of the Declaration of Human Rights, the way in which our government tries to protects these rights mirrors the teachings of many major religions including Christianity. We did some great lessons on the riots from last summer and the role that religious community played especially the Sikhs because their strong ideas on service. The basic teachings of the ten commandments were not followed during these riots and we also discussed the unravelling a society which had sometimes lost their way morally. This ties beautifully into the ideas of good vs. evil which our Year 10's just took their GCSE in. What Citizenship does is helps to put into context the world we live in now and makes it more interesting for our students. I am sorry to say most of our students don't have a strong religious faith. They aren't really bothered about learning 20 different quotes so they can apply them in an exam. During a recent Philosopy unit I struggled to get students to join a debate on theism vs. atheism, hardly anyone wanted to argue for the theist view.
    Have you taught Exam Citizenship at all? If you did you will see how closely they are linked. I can confidently say that I can connect any RE unit to Citizenship. I did my Special Study at University on Citizenship/RE during my PGCE and received very positive feedback .

     
  4. TheBigA

    TheBigA Occasional commenter

    Relating religious beliefs, values and traditions to society and pupils' experiences is hardly something new.
    Can't say I've ever had that problem. Besides, it doesn't really matter whether they want to argue for theism. By arguing for atheism they are explaining why they don't believe in God and I would imagine any worthwhile discussion would have covered atheist criticisms of theistic arguments so that they were covering the spectrum of views a 'debate' would have covered anyway. If they didn't then I'd question the usefulness and validity of the exercise. Perhaps the problem in this particular situation was how you approached it.
     
  5. I don't k ow what area you teach in but many of our students are not that bothered with RE and it is not the way I approached It. In the past there was a greater emphasis on the importance of RE in the school but since the E- Bac we have lost our KS4 and our present Year 10's will be the last group through. We are teaching non exam RE combined with Citizenship for some units and other units will be pure RE. The emphasis in our school is clearly with the core subjects and not us.
     
  6. I agree with above about maternity cover - looks like one in my dept will be done internally / through contacts rather than advertising.

    In my area, we are the only school with FC GCSE during school timetable. The one closest too us has just lost it due to low option numbers as their resources / SOW are still firmly rooted in the 1980s. Whilst some of my SLT don't really see the potential / benefit of GCSE FC RS, we get the best results in the school for an examined subject, have over 1/2 of the year group opting for the subject (current year 9 options saw 93 out of 158 students opt for it) and attract the children of governors who demand their children do GCSE FC, the 'gobby girls' who aren't afraid to speak up in support of the subject during student voice sessions with the head & SLT and win national / local competitons. So, in response to the people who teach it alongside citizenship, I disagree. It is an academic subject in which students are allowed to have an opinion, to question beliefs and ideas (unheard of in other subjects across my school - one Maths teacher thought it was dangerous to allow students to express their opinion during lessons!). Through engaging KS3 SOW, the right GCSE sepc that matches students ability, interests & engages them, then the dept will thrive. We've just had the biggest uptake for AS next year out of all subjects and attracted very high calibre students! It is due to falling roll and over staffing in other subjects that I cannot appointment. It's a numbers and money game.

    Slight rant over.
     
  7. TheBigA

    TheBigA Occasional commenter

    I teach in Scotland. Core RME is compulsory for one period a week until S4, though this is being introduced in S5/6 inline with cfe.
    Let me tell you, very few of our students have a religious belief of any kind. We stiil manage to attract large number of students to certificate classes at all levels. Whilst understanding that there a various issues which exacerbate the situation, I firmly believe that how the subject is taught and what is taught is the number one deciding factor in how it is viewed by students - it is the same for any subject. So I think that if the subject is undervalued by students in a school, the responsibility lies with those who teach it and that whilst there may be things outwith their control, the subject can still be valued by students if it is delivered in the correct way.
    So, what's your emphasis?

     
  8. I feel that your comments are quite insulting. I am a good to outstanding teacher with some of my observations receiving an outstanding.It is not my teaching that is at fault.

     
  9. TheBigA

    TheBigA Occasional commenter

    They aren't supposed to be insulting, I apologise if they came across in that way. However, I have to say that you do seem to have a rather negative attitude about RE, or at least it's standing in your school, and I don't think it's beyond the imagination that that could come across in your teaching, unintentionally or otherwise.
    My point was really that RME is the same as any subject - some kids like it, some don't and others are indifferent. Not every student will value the subject, but not all value maths or English either. Ultimately, what makes the difference is the teacher and how they deliver the subject. You need to remain positive and enthusiastic even if no one else is.
     
  10. What an incredibly short sighted, prejudiced view.
    I was trained in English and taught that subject for over ten years. I then yearned for a change in direction and was lucky enough to be promoted to acting Head of RS. I loved the job and the results of the school shot up because I was passionate about my subject.

    It's a pity people like you are so limited in their outlook.
     
  11. And what about teachers who want to change subject? I successfully taught English for years before moving over to RS. I read up on my subject knowledge and worked hard. The results improved massively and yet I had no theology or RS degree.

    Don't deliberately appoint people without subject related degrees but don't ignore them either!
     
  12. Why would you want to teach about myths and superstitiion anyway? I suggest that you apply to be a science teacher
     
  13. durgamata

    durgamata Occasional commenter

    There is a lot of ignorance around in the world, Your comments are fairly typical of it. Why would we wish to teach people about the reality which is religion and it is one of the most powerful and influential forces in our lives and in our world - because we recognise the harm that ignorance can do. Your ignorant comment is a good example.
     
  14. Fictional religious books do not need another subject. Just keep it as one of the options in English Literature.
     
  15. One tends to find that the people with the most fictional personas are the most fixated on fiction generally.
     
  16. durgamata

    durgamata Occasional commenter

    nice one Bella.
    I have two kittens and one of them is called Bella!
     
  17. Some people regard cats as gods and may well have written books saying so. Do you? If not, why not?
    If its written in a holy book, it must be true, right?
     
  18. Truth is hard to define and totally subjective, something that all good RE teachers aim to instill in their students. That, and an understanding of the social, cutural and anthropological impact religion has has on our civilisation. You could teach about Henry VIII, but that doesn't make you a tudor.
     
  19. durgamata

    durgamata Occasional commenter

    Not at all. In RE we look at the origin of holy books. Christianity in particular - and the different ways of interpreting these which can be simplified as 'fundamentalist' and 'liberal.'
    A Christian Fundamentalist might argue that since God is All Good and All Powerful, if He wished us to have a different book, then He would have guided those who wrote the books of the Bible to write something different, and those who selected which books to include to make a different selection.
    Therefore what we have - as our Bible - is reliable and we can accept it as The Word of God.
    As a result of this thinking, a Fundamentalist is likely to take the Bible as literal truth (so believe in a seven day creation, and disbelieve in evolution, for example)
    However a liberal Christian will say 'here is a collection of many books written by around 80 different authors over a period of more than 1000 years. The earliest books come from pre-history, from an Oral Tradition which was later written down by editors who combined several different stories into one narrative.
    Scriptural analysis, for example concludes that there are two creation-stories (the seven day one and the Adam and Eve one) in Genesis, which were woven together.
    These, being of the genre of Oral Tradition are not intended to be read as literal truth, but are poetic, full of metophor and symbolic truth. Read in that way they do not contradict the idea of evolution, but add to it much which science does not engage with - what is good - what our responsibility is towards the rest of the natural world, why people do wrong and how 'evil' came into the world.
    God gave us brains to use. In RE we encourage our students and pupils to think more deeply.
     
  20. mr_a_non

    mr_a_non New commenter

    "Truth is hard to define and totally subjective, something that all good RE teachers aim to instill in their students. That, and an understanding of the social, cutural and anthropological impact religion has has on our civilisation. You could teach about Henry VIII, but that doesn't make you a tudor."
    Maybe I'm not a good RE teacher, but I certainly don't go around promoting the notion that "truth is totally subjective" as some kind of necessary truth.
     

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