Parents challenge RE GCSE change

A High Court challenge has been mounted by three families over the government’s decision to exclude the study of humanism from the new Religious Studies GCSE. The three claimants, all parents of students due to take their GCSEs in the next few years, have asked for a judicial review of the p0licy on the basis that non-religious beliefs are not being treated equally to religious beliefs.

The new RS GCSE, which was announced by the Department of Education last year, requires students to study two faiths in order to gain a balanced understanding of different beliefs – but the parents launching the challenge say that it does not reflect “the views of the population”. The short-term review is also backed by the British Humanists Association. Chief Executive of the Association Andrew Copson said that the change to the subject content is “incompatible” with the rights of non-religious parents and their children.

A ruling in response to the challenge is expected within a few months.