The following agenda items were discussed:
1. Review of the terms of reference for FSPG:
The changes that the government wishes to make are for all schools to become academies. Faith Schools have been asked to speak to colleagues in RS departments about the feasibility of an awareness campaign so that the FSPG academies implement the RE properly in their schools.
2. Opportunity Areas:
The 3 year programme is being rolled out by the Government with the LAs and other local partners to give the same opportunities to all youngsters ,especially to inner city schools, and this applies to Faith schools if they wish to join. Draft action plan will be available by the end of March and there will be funding attached to the plan.
3. Update on Anti-Homophobic, Biphobic and Transphobic Bullying Programme:
John Peart, Senior Policy Adviser, gave a detailed update on the anti-homophobic, biphobic and transphobic bullying programme. In 2016, the Government announced £4.4m funding to tackle bullying in schools. Currently, 6 charities are working with at least 200 schools each across England. It was stressed that Schools don’t have to participate if they don’t want to.
4. Schools that work for Everyone Consultation: The consultation document has received 8000 responses and 1000 letters. Some responses have supported Faith schools and some responses have expressed concerns about the performances of Faith Schools. Monitoring and sections are to be taken if Faith Schools do not meet the requirements and the strengthening of assessment process has been recommended. I
Latest updates, please visit: htts://hansard.parliament.uk/Commons/2016-09-12/debates/9FBA99CB-1059-4F5D-903B-D2C7509BF46E/SchoolsThatWorkForEveryone .
5. Independent Education, Safeguarding in Schools & Counter Extremism Updates:
Julian Butcher, Faith Schools Policy Team Member, gave a detailed update. The full minutes of the meeting will be circulated soon and will be available from the HCUK website.
Director of Education
Hindu Council UK