On 17 March, the All Party Parliamentary Group for RE launched its summary report of its enquiry into the contribution of RE to good community relations. A copy of the report is available on the REC website. It was written on behalf of the APPG by Dr Joyce Miller, to whom many thanks are due for the way in which she organised the evidence giving and wrote the report on a very tight timetable. There was an excellent turnout for the launch, hosted by Stephen Lloyd MP, the Chair of the Group, who emphasised that when it comes to RE ‘ignorance is not bliss’. Superb presentations of the importance of RE generally and the role it plays in schools were given by the Young Ambassadors for RE from Broughton School in Lancashire. The headteacher of St John the Baptist Church of England School in Lewisham also presented a very inspiring vision of RE. Several parliamentarians were in attendance as well which gave an opportunity for informally discussing the nature and role of RE. I gave a concluding address in which I thanked everybody taking part and those who made the event possible, a team effort of course, but particularly Jeremy Taylor, Chair of the PR committee and Sarah Smalley, Executive officer of the REC.
A full report will be produced later in the year, but I urge you to read the summary. It has received good publicity through a number of media outlets this week, and shows how important RE is when it is taught well. We need to spread the good practice that undoubtedly exists in RE to more places.