Latest news and updates from NASACRE
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Issue: 8

This issue includes:
To view all the resources on the website, your SACRE needs to be a member of NASACRE. Locked areas are indicated with a white padlock and require you to log in. Officers of member SACREs have the log-in details. Please contact them for this information.

NASACRE conference and AGM

A very successful NASACRE annual conference was held on 21st May. The Rt Hon Charles Clarke gave us a great deal to consider in his keynote address and the seminar addresses from Prof Denise Cush and Mary Myatt provided us with thought provoking staring points for our regional round table discussions. From the Conference materials page, you can listen to Charles Clarke’s keynote address, download the two seminar presentations and read an analysis of the evaluation forms.

The State of the Nation

2014 NASACRE survey responses

From September to December 2014, NASACRE held an open consultation via its website. Of the 152 education authorities in England, each required to have a SACRE, 87 (57%) participated in the 22 question survey. The purpose of the survey was to see the current state and status of SACREs in England; Wales has its own national association. David Hampshire has now completed the analysis of the NASACRE survey.

A New Settlement: Religion and Belief in Schools

Four members of the NASACRE executive committee attended the launch of A New Settlement: Religion and Belief in Schools at the House of Lords on Monday 15th June. 
The authors of the pamphlet, Prof Linda Woodhead and Rt Hon Charles Clarke, were introduced by Lord Sutherland who hosted the reception. Linda spoke about the background of changes to society, religion and education since 1944. Charles spoke about the recommendations of their policy initiative. These can be read in full on pages 63-66.  Those recommendations which most pertain to SACREs are: 
  • (1)That collective worship should no longer be statutory; governors and head teachers being able to decide the form and nature of school assemblies.
  • (4)That locally agreed syllabuses are replaced by one nationally agreed syllabus, determined by a ‘National Standing Advisory Council on RE’ made up of “relevant experts on religion and education”
  • (11)That local SACREs are given a new role including participating in the consultations about the content of the national RE curriculum, helping local implementation, promoting community cohesion, educating for diversity and giving advice.
NASACRE is preparing a briefing paper (available by the end of June) to support SACREs in their discussions about the recommendations. We would ask that SACREs discuss these three proposals in particular and report back to NASACRE so that we can represent accurately members’ views in any further discussions. Although the next steps for these proposals are not yet clear, Charles and Linda are planning to meet the Schools’ Minister in the near future.

SACRE Annual Reports

Thank you to those SACREs who have already submitted reports for the year 2013-14. We have already had one for the current year!

Please email your SACRE report as one document in PDF format with a maximum size of approx 3Mb to:

The Westhill /NASACRE Awards 2015-16

The formal notice, briefing paper and application form are now on the NASACRE website. The closing date for applications for an Award (of up to £4,000) has been extended to 24th July.
Michael Metcalf

New website

We hope that you will have had chance to explore the new website and that you are finding it easy to navigate and find the resources and help you need to support your work.

As you will see from articles in this briefing, new resources are being added all the time. If you cannot find what you are looking for, the improved search facility may help you to track it down. If you are still unable to find what you need, please contact the relevant member of the Exec - see the Contacts page.

It may seem really boring, but ...

... in order that you don't miss out on important mailings, it is essential that we have up to date contact information about your SACRE personnel. 

Click here to check details.
Click here to email new details.

A new FAQ

Agreed syllabus

This new FAQ is to be found in the Resources area: 

Question 8: We have a non-mainstream religious group that is lobbying to be included in the agreed syllabus and it wants to change some of the agreed content. How should we respond?

NASACRE membership 2015-16

At the beginning of June, invoices were emailed for payment of annual subscription for the academic year 2015-16. We have already begun to receive some payments. Thank you.

Payment needs to be received by the end of August.

At the beginning of September, clerks of paid up SACREs will receive a special email with the 2015-16 log in details for the website. Next month, a reminder will be sent to those LAs from whom we have not yet received payment. You may wish to check with your finance team where in the cycle your payment has reached.

SACRE member survey

Those who attended the annual conference and AGM last month will remember Mark Plater introducing a survey he wishes to conduct with SACRE members. NASACRE Exec is currently discussing the final details of this with Mark and it will soon be live. Please check continue to check the website for details.
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Young people and inter faith engagement 

In April IFN launched a new youth inter faith engagement ‘microsite’ linked to its main website. 

On this site are materials flowing from a special event, ‘Young Voices, Young Agents for Change’, which took place in November and brought together over 80 participants of different ages from a range of organisations to explore aspects of inter faith activity developed by, with and for young people. The aim is to broaden and strengthen this area of activity, enabling even more young people to get involved.  In preparation for the event, the IFN office contacted member bodies to ask if they had programmes or projects which were relevant to the day and a number were featured.  

On the microsite is an illustrated report on the day and a summary of points made by participants in the course of the day. There are also videos of the presentations by the three young presenters who opened the day: Aamna Alam of Bolton Interfaith Young Ambassadors; Ankit Sinha of Redbridge Ambassadors of Faith and Belief and Megan Wallace of Interfaith Scotland and many more video clips of participants from other organisations and projects such as: Rachel Silveira of 3FF; Dr Joyce Miller of the RE Council of England and Wales; Raheed Salam of the National Council of Faiths and Beliefs in Further Education and Isabelle King of the National Council for Voluntary Youth Services.  

The work on the microsite and on the event was kindly made possible by support from the Church Urban Fund, Golden Tours Foundation, Inter Faith Youth Trust, National Association of SACREs, and Zoroastrian Trust Funds for Europe as well as through support from the Department for Communities and Local Government for the work programme of which this event formed part.

Teach RE 

RE Council ‘Beyond the Ordinary’ campaign

The RE Council is leading the campaign to increase trainee numbers. Entitled ‘Beyond the Ordinary’, its aim is to encourage graduates and career changers to train as RE teachers:  

"The Government has reintroduced training bursaries this year – up to £9,000 tax free for individuals with a first or a PhD - and we are hoping to increase awareness of this and help reverse the drop in numbers of people advancing to study for a PGCE as an RE specialist.  And as vital members of the RE community, we are hoping that you can help spread the word."

The campaign highlights the benefits of a career in RE teaching and includes a short video looking at the experiences of an RE teacher and her students. Click here for further information.

The Role of Faith in British Schools

Day conference

Thursday, 3 September 2015 
The Stripe Theatre at the University of Winchester
10:00am - 4:00pm (followed by SEEFF AGM at 4:00pm)
The South East England Faiths Forum (SEEFF), in conjunction with the University of Winchester and the National Association of Standing Advisory Councils on Religious Education (NASACRE) is hosting a conference on The Role of Faith in British Schools at the University of Winchester to explore that connection. The plenary speaker will be Alan Brine, recently retired as the lead on Religious Education for Ofsted.

There will be a panel on faith schools, independent and state, and a variety of workshops, some of specific interest to members of SACREs and school governors. There will also be a workshop on SMSC.

Workshop leaders and panellists will include:
  • Alan Brine, possibly workshop on requirements for teaching of RE as well as plenary 
  • Jo Fageant, RE adviser, Oxford Anglican diocese
  • Mark Owen, Centre of Religions for Reconciliation and Peace, University of Winchester
  • Patricia Hannam, RE adviser, Hampshire County Council 
  • Rhiannon Love, Primary RE and SMSC training, University of Winchester
  • Alasdair Richardson, secondary RE training and PGCE, University of Winchester
  • Zafar Ali, Governor Iqra Muslim school, Slough
Because of generous funding the fee will be only £12 for the day, to include coffee, tea, biscuits and a light lunch.
The SEEFF AGM will be held at 4 PM.

For further information and a booking form contact Elizabeth Jenkerson:
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