In European schools without separation of church/state, how do they decide which sect of religion to teach?

I know separation varies, but I understand many European countries do have religion in public schools and the public square, and not the non-specific/least common denominator variety that America has some limited form of.

So, how do they decide which one to go with? Even among Christians (discounting Jews, Muslims, Hindus, etc.), if they teach religion in school, how do they teach Catholics, Presbyterians, Mormons, Lutherans, and Baptists all in the same room? Doesn't it just degrade into a theological argument?

I know they're less diverse, but still, there's bound to be SOME diversity. How is that dealt with?

9 Answers

  • 1 decade ago
    Favorite Answer

    In the UK schools are largely secular but there are some faith-oriented schools as well. These are still liberal in outlook and educational policy, but also include recognition of faith in education. You'll do just as well in your chemistry and German, but you'll also learn what's important from the Bible/Torah etc.

    In the secular schools, different faiths are regarded as "cultures", with their different priorities, beliefs and celebrations given equal weight with no attempt to present one as "right" (though largely, as in my son's nursery school, they plainly centre the present "celebrations" around the nativity of Jesus). You should do well in chemistry and German again, but also learn about Divali, Judaism, Mecca and Ganesh, without having to accept any of them as truth. It enables children to appreciate what is important to people of other religions, or at least that's the idea. Also, they get to mark all the different holidays instead of just the one.

  • 1 decade ago

    I taught religious education in England for a little while. The answer is that all forms of religion are supposed to be taught, but in practice the most popular forms. The simularities are greater than the differences, so this is not that hard. Though I was repremanded by the head of department for teaching that the God of Islam was the same as the God of Christianity. Do Catholics and Protestants worship the same Jesus? Surely they do.

    Source(s): The Bible.
  • 1 decade ago

    Students during religion classes are divided into groups of Christians, Muslims and other religions. There religious exams are also grouped in that way. Believe you me, it is not as complicated as it seems and parents are cool with that.

  • 1 decade ago

    Well, I don't understand to what extent theology is taught, but, because the chruch was such a large part of European history, its going to be everywhere, and you have to show the history in perspective.

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  • They normally go for the predominant religion- yet for most subjects not much religion comes into it.... does it? I see Religious Studies, and perhaps Science & History, but what else?

  • Anonymous
    1 decade ago

    Interesting question. There are many Europeans here, I will watch your answers.

    Seventh day Adventist, huh. I read that yesterday. It is funny how life leads us in directions that are somehow right for us. Most of us follow our heart and our head.

  • 1 decade ago

    They all teach religion as a benign belief. No European country is religious-none.

  • 1 decade ago

    perhaps it depends on the predominate denomination of the community or school.

  • 1 decade ago

    Whoever happens to be in power decides.

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