The RE Council of England and Wales welcomes the consultation on the criteria for GCSE and A Level examinations in Religious Studies and is pleased that its officers and member organisations have contributed to the process which has been led by the Department for Education.

We will be encouraging our member organisations to join us in responding to the consultation document.  We hope that there will now be an informed public debate to which teachers, school leaders, governors and everyone committed to high quality religious education will contribute.

In our most recent curriculum document, Religious education: a national curriculum framework, we made clear our policy that religious education in schools and colleges should include the study of non-religious worldviews alongside religious traditions. Dr Joyce Miller, Chair of the REC, said ‘The REC Board has agreed unanimously that the optional systematic study of a non-religious worldview should be introduced at GCSE level.  We want to promote a rigorous and inclusive study of religions and beliefs that is relevant and challenging for young people of all faiths and none.’