Religious Education at Durham Johnston Comprehensive School

 “It is the mark of an educated mind to be able to entertain a thought without accepting it.”

At Durham Johnston the shape of the curriculum in RE is such that it gives students from Years 7 to 13 opportunities to begin to develop and strengthen their world-view.

Religious Education makes a rich contribution to the whole school curriculum in that it equips pupils and students alike with knowledge and understanding to help them interpret their own existence, that of the multicultural community of the school and its environment whilst also enabling them to give recognition to the place of religion on the broader canvas of world culture.  Religious Education, in the context of a secondary school, should provide a safe place to explore some of the deeper questions about life, meaning and purpose.  We have subject specialist teachers to assist with the effort of such exploration – where time is given to question and evaluate.  As a result of such teacher/student engagement many of the store-houses of religious culture, literature, and artefacts are best made sense of so as to provide material for stimulating discussion or debate.  As such, the subject is open to the reflective wisdoms different world religions offer – these can add much to the exploration of philosophical and ethical issues in contemporary life.  Ultimately, pupils and students alike leave us to take their place in different and wider spheres of influence.  If RE has been useful to pupils/students in their education, each will sense that usefulness: in the knowledge they have gained; in the sensitivity developed to evaluate their own thoughts, as well as those of others; in their wider awareness of a world characterised by rich and diverse experience, where religious and non-religious beliefs play their part in the ordinariness of everyday reality.