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High quality RE should be a 'fundamental' part of education.

High quality RE should be a 'fundamental' part of education.

High quality religious education should be a fundamental part of every school’s offer. It’s too important for young people to miss, writes NAHT’s Sarah Hannafin, a former RE teacher

I chose to teach religious education. After graduating, I started work as a teaching assistant in my local secondary school to see what I thought about becoming a teacher. With a law degree I knew I would have to enhance my subject knowledge whichever subject I chose to teach, so I looked around to find the best fit for me.

I spent two years working with whole classes, groups and individuals across the whole curriculum, including maths, English, history, languages and technology. Eventually, I chose RE.

I studied, qualified, taught the subject for 15 years and remain an advocate for what a great subject it is to teach and how important it is for pupils to study it.

RE is so much more than just a valuable subject for academic study. It allows young people the opportunity to develop understanding, tolerance and respect for religious and non-religious beliefs, practices and viewpoints. In the best lessons I taught, I remember plenty of challenging questions and fierce debate about the meaning and purpose of life, beliefs and issues of right and wrong.

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