Say no to bible classes in school time

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Schools are for teaching, not preaching. However, the Education and Training Bill, the 2020 update to the old Education Act, still sanctions bible classes for primary school children.

More than 30% of our secular, state primary schools, those with no religious affiliation, close for up to an hour a week, up to 20 hours a year. 

Church volunteers come and preach non-syllabus, non-Ministry of Education approved Christianity classes to young children.

Surely in 2020 this is changing?

The only change made in the new Education and Training Bill is to make these classes opt-in, rather than opt-out.  Schools can still allow these to take place, and children will miss out on a total of 6.5 weeks full time learning over their primary education.

Teachers can even join in and be paid for participating in Bible in Schools programmes rather than teaching their classes. This makes a mockery of our state schools being ‘secular’, particularly in 2020 New Zealand, where more than 60% of New Zealanders are not Christian.

Schools are for teaching, not preaching. They must be welcoming to children of all backgrounds.  This discriminatory and outdated law must be changed. It is blatant religious privilege and nothing less than the state-sanctioned targeting of children by religious groups trying to spread their faith.

Unless action is taken, religious instruction will remain in law.

It’s time for change Minister Hipkins

Minister Chris Hipkins, we call on you to delete Section 54 of the Education and Training Bill, which allows religious instruction in State primary and intermediate schools.

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