Many pupils in primary and secondary schools have a positive attitude towards religious education lessons, according to a report published today by Estyn. Many pupils actively participate in discussions during religious education lessons. These lessons contribute towards them becoming ethical and informed citizens of Wales.
The report, "Religious education at key stage 2 and key stage 3’ evaluates standards, provision and leadership in religious education in schools. It also looks at pupils’ attitudes towards learning about religious education, how well the curriculum is planned, how well it is taught, led and assessed.
Meilyr Rowlands, Chief Inspector, says,
Religious education should encourage pupils to explore a range of questions in a reflective, analytical and balanced way. Pupils should have opportunities to consider aspects such as humanity’s quest for meaning.
We’ve found that the majority of 11-14 year-olds understand how religious education supports them to become informed global citizens and feel this helps them to contribute well in their local community. Case studies in the report outline good practice for schools to use.
The report highlights Dŵr-y-Felin Comprehensive School in Neath Port Talbot where teachers developed pupils’ interest through a project where they researched people with a religious background, using the theme of ‘Heroes and Villains’. Pupils worked collaboratively enhancing their evaluative and analytical skills. As a result, pupils had high levels of motivation, enthusiasm and engagement throughout the term.
Inspectors recommend that schools should ensure that more able pupils achieve standards of religious education in line with their ability, and strengthen transition arrangements between key stage 2 and key stage 3 to avoid repetition of work. In addition, schools should evaluate their curriculum for religious education in order to prepare for the development and implementation of the new Humanities Area of Learning and Experience as part of the new curriculum for Wales.