CNS foirecord105 released by RTE under FOI is a Memo circulated by the Dept of Education and Skills. This document shows clearly that the Dept of Education & Skills do not understand basic human rights principles. They do not respect the philosophical convictions of secular parents.
The New Community National Schools are developing a Religious education course called Goodness Me! Goodness You!. The Irish state has informed the UN that these schools are open to all. They claim that the new Religious education course respects all viewpoints both religious and non-religious.
Document 105 is a Memo dated 17th September 2008 of a meeting to discuss the Religious education programme with parents of children attending a Community National school.One of the parents asked a question regarding the separation of moral and religious education and was told the following:
“It is true that all morality is based on love – of God and ones neighbour. This will be a central theme in the Religious Education programme. However, moral values are taught within a religious context. We cannot divorce them from that setting.”
When parents asked about opting out of the course they were not given a clear answer.
This behaviour is a breach of Article II of Protocol I (the right to education) of the European Convention. It also breaches Article 13 of the UN Convention on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights. This Document shows clearly that the Irish state disrespects the philosophical convictions of secular parents. It also shows that these Community National Schools are not suitable for those parents that seek secular education for their children.