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Religious schools spin off


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#1 Guest_LeChatNinjah_*

Posted 12 February 2013 - 09:25 PM

This is a spin off from the topic in News about teachers at an Islamic school being forced to wear a hijab whether or not they are Muslim.

Let's say that they are allowed to enforce this, as it's within the scope of the religion, although it was pointed out by Sarah that it's not actually a "law" as such.

If you agree with this do you think science teachers in faith-based schools should be "forced" to teach Creationism?  I'm not talking religious teachers, but science teachers.

I admit I had a teeny bit of sympathy for the dress code thing, but I feel very strongly on creationism being taught as science anywhere.  

Is that too long a bow to draw?

I watched a great "doco" (sort of doco) on secularism the other day which some may find interesting, so here's the link - http://topdocumentaryfilms.com/atheism-critical-thinking/

Disclaimer - I mean no offense to those of any faith by posting said link!  It raises some very interesting points and is also free.  Free is good.



#2 JRA

Posted 12 February 2013 - 09:26 PM

I think it is a long bow to draw.

Many people are asked to wear a particular uniform be a man wearing a tie, or women expected not to wear trousers.



#3 Guest_LeChatNinjah_*

Posted 12 February 2013 - 09:28 PM

Agreed, JRA, but as Beetlebop pointed out, a hijab doesn't fall into the same category as a tie or skirt length, at least not in this little duck's view.

It's enforcing a part of that religion onto staff members who are not of that faith.  Would a Catholic school be allowed to make a crucifix part of staff uniform?  Would that have public support?



#4 Froger

Posted 12 February 2013 - 09:37 PM

QUOTE (LeChatNinjah @ 12/02/2013, 09:25 PM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
This is a spin off from the topic in News about teachers at an Islamic school being forced to wear a hijab whether or not they are Muslim.

Let's say that they are allowed to enforce this, as it's within the scope of the religion, although it was pointed out by Sarah that it's not actually a "law" as such.

I guess you are referring to me? Anyway, to clarify that, non-Muslims wearing hijab is not an Islamic law. Infact it is quite arguably going against Islam to require non-Muslim women to wear hejab, as hejab is meant to be an "identifying" statement of being a Muslim, and has only been made law for believers.

QUOTE
Those who harass believing men and believing women undeservedly, bear (on themselves) a calumny and a grievous sin. O Prophet! Enjoin your wives, your daughters, and the wives of true believers that they should cast their outer garments over their persons (when abroad): That is most convenient, that they may be distinguished and not be harassed. [...] (Quran 33:58–59


As to law in Australia, I believe that religious schools and institutions are exempt from some of the Discrimination Acts. So I'm guessing the schools can do what they want in regards to enforcing a uniform policy. But I am at a loss as to why Muslim schools want to enforce hejab for their non-Muslim female teachers. shrug.gif

Edited by SarahM72, 12 February 2013 - 09:41 PM.


#5 Lucrezia Borgia

Posted 12 February 2013 - 09:39 PM

It's an interesting point,

Coming from an atheist point of view, I hate the fact that in state schools ( nsw) the kids are given religious instruction ..as atheists we have to opt out. But I think with that argument it follows that, yes, religious schools should be able to dictate what is taught, dress codes etc ( to within reasonable legal limits of course) .


#6 Guest_LeChatNinjah_*

Posted 12 February 2013 - 09:40 PM

Thanks for clarifying that, Sarah, I didn't know the details  original.gif

Lucretia - if they teach it as part of their faith then it's one thing, but I was specifically talking about it being taught as science.  That's the part I object to.



#7 BeachedAsBro

Posted 12 February 2013 - 09:43 PM

A friend used to work at an Islamic school and she's Catholic. She wasn't to wear short sleeves or plunging necklines, shorts or short skirts back then. She also wasn't to have non-halal food products on site. No dramas. She saved her ham sandwiches for days she wasn't working.  I see no issue with whacking a scarf over hair if that fits in with the uniform policy of the employer.

As for creationism, I went to Catholic school in the 80s and 90s and was taught the Genesis story of creation, I was also taught about the story of evolution in science class. We were widely taught that the Old Testament was stories and it was the New Testament that was the truth. Speak to a Jewish school student though and their experience will differ.

I daresay this is a media beat-up to have rednecks up in arms over the 'Islamification of Australia' and how we're 'losing our cultural identity', which is based on theft and destruction of land and culture from another community of people anyway.

A story about Muslims 'impeding' on the 'Australian' way of life is like shooting fish in a barrel. It got us talking too, so it must work.

#8 Lucrezia Borgia

Posted 12 February 2013 - 09:49 PM

QUOTE (LeChatNinjah @ 12/02/2013, 10:40 PM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
Thanks for clarifying that, Sarah, I didn't know the details  original.gif

Lucretia - if they teach it as part of their faith then it's one thing, but I was specifically talking about it being taught as science.  That's the part I object to.

Ok, then at the risk of opening a whole can of worms here no....not if they are receiving government funding ...and maybe even if they arent? But then how do you enforce it? Funding is the big stick you wave to make sure they are complying with the curriculum ....

As for uniform...hmmm...I guess I think they can enforce a dress code..wear a hat or else, wear a tie, a headscarf.....yes, a crucifix ...I see this as less important than teaching them myth dressed up as science....


#9 IsolaBella

Posted 12 February 2013 - 09:51 PM

QUOTE (BeachedAsBro @ 12/02/2013, 10:43 PM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
As for creationism, I went to Catholic school in the 80s and 90s and was taught the Genesis story of creation, I was also taught about the story of evolution in science class.


+ 1 for 80's early 90's Genesis in Religion as a story, Evolution in Science.



#10 PigNewton

Posted 12 February 2013 - 09:52 PM

QUOTE
If you agree with this do you think science teachers in faith-based schools should be "forced" to teach Creationism? I'm not talking religious teachers, but science teachers.

No, but I think you'll find that very few religious schools DO teach that, I know they definitely didn't 22 years ago when I was in high school (most of the kids I was friends with went to various private schools)

OTOH some of the more fundamentalist schools in the US may be a different story, but I'm pretty sure the teachers there would be members of the relevant church and would know exactly what "science" they were expected to teach.

This is speaking as a Christian who was taught evolution by parents, school and church BTW. I did have a few kids in my class who genuinely believed the world was only 6000 years old, but they had learned that at home before ever coming to school.

#11 mummanazz

Posted 12 February 2013 - 09:56 PM

I'm a Science teacher in a Catholic school. We would never teach this in Science purely because it is not in the Australian Curriculum that we have to follow.

I would say most Catholic  schools are the same.
EFS

Edited by mummanazz, 12 February 2013 - 09:57 PM.


#12 Feral_Pooks

Posted 12 February 2013 - 10:02 PM

QUOTE (LeChatNinjah @ 12/02/2013, 10:28 PM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
Agreed, JRA, but as Beetlebop pointed out, a hijab doesn't fall into the same category as a tie or skirt length, at least not in this little duck's view.

It's enforcing a part of that religion onto staff members who are not of that faith.  Would a Catholic school be allowed to make a crucifix part of staff uniform?  Would that have public support?


I'm sorry, but I disagree. Wearing a headscarf is not any different. It's an item of clothing worn by many religions and cultures. It might not be one you're familiar with but... So what?

QUOTE (SarahM72 @ 12/02/2013, 10:37 PM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
I guess you are referring to me? Anyway, to clarify that, non-Muslims wearing hijab is not an Islamic law. Infact it is quite arguably going against Islam to require non-Muslim women to wear hejab, as hejab is meant to be an "identifying" statement of being a Muslim, and has only been made law for believers.



As to law in Australia, I believe that religious schools and institutions are exempt from some of the Discrimination Acts. So I'm guessing the schools can do what they want in regards to enforcing a uniform policy. But I am at a loss as to why Muslim schools want to enforce hejab for their non-Muslim female teachers. shrug.gif


Doesn't matter. They want to do it, they can. It can be founded in culture as much as in the letter of the holy books. I fail to see the bit in the bible about catholic school staff and students needing to wear skirts at a certain length, yet, here we are, catholic and non-catholic being asked to adhere to it without a peep.

As for teaching evolution, I'd think of it this way. In my ideal world, there would be a "base". All schools would be required to teach from that base and would get a base level of funding. If people want to do anything beyond that, they can form religious or private schools, charge accordingly to fill the "gap" and teach whatever they choose in addition to the base. I would be comfortable with schools teaching evolution and then teaching what their religion believes as well. FWIW I've not encountered "anti-evolution" or "anti-science" among Australian Muslims the way I have among certain Christian groups in this country.

#13 peking homunculus

Posted 12 February 2013 - 10:06 PM

The majority of Christians do not believe Creationism. It's not Catholic doctrine and is usually the preserve of the more extreme Christian denominations. I can't see many schools wanting to take this step. plus they would not be a registered school if they did not teach the curriculum, which clearly includes evolution.

I'm more concerned about the exemptions to the discrimination act for private schools that allows them to refuse enrollment or expel pregnant girls.

#14 AbbottProofFence

Posted 12 February 2013 - 10:16 PM

I specifically sent my children to a non religious school because I didn't want religion being forced on them. If you choose a religious school, it's a different matter but they should be teaching the facts.

Sadly, there is not always lot of choice for parents, especially in rural areas, and you often have to pick between a mediocre public school and a decent religious school.

Edited by norageo, 08 July 2013 - 11:18 PM.


#15 Guest_LeChatNinjah_*

Posted 12 February 2013 - 10:24 PM

All good points raised in above posts.

When I attended a strict, all-girls Anglican school we were also taught the Bible in scripture classes, however evolution in science classes was treated with kid gloves and very careful language.

That was in the Dark Ages, however, possibly before Darwin published anything, which might account for it, lol.

QUOTE
Wearing a headscarf is not any different. It's an item of clothing worn by many religions and cultures. It might not be one you're familiar with but... So what?


I'm quite familiar with it, and I wasn't asking this question based on any one faith.  It's not an item of clothing worn by many religions, at least, if it is, it's a matter of personal choice.  As Sarah pointed out, it's not actual Islamic "law" to wear it, as far as I understand, which surely puts it in the realm of personal choice.

I know many devout Christians who choose not to wear a crucifix, and others who do.  I'm not singling out Islam here, it's much more about asking what can be enforced and what should be left to the individual to express as part of their faith.

I'm no ignorant redneck (no matter what some may think).  I think anyone of any faith should be free to practice their religion in any way they choose, as long as they don't enforce those choices on others.  If you want to wear a hijab, crucifix, nun's habit, burqa, yarmulke, saffron robe, Jedi cloak or anything else, then no one else has the right to tell you not to.  

I simply don't think these items of clothing should be forced upon anyone who would prefer not to wear them.  They are items strictly related to a particular faith, and I honestly don't think that they can be compared to having to wear a bus-driver's uniform, or a hairnet in the food industry or a suit and tie.

I do, however, admit that it's a very fine line.  






#16 jayskette

Posted 12 February 2013 - 10:31 PM

I know for a fact that science teachers in a Catholic high school are not allowed to teach Darwin's theory.

#17 Guest_LeChatNinjah_*

Posted 12 February 2013 - 10:33 PM

Really, Jayskette, can you elaborate?  Do they just avoid the concept of evolution completely?



#18 peking homunculus

Posted 12 February 2013 - 10:43 PM

It is actually just a scarf. Grace Kelly used to wear them and no one thought she was Islamic!

I do think a scarf can easily be considered part of a uniform. A head scarf is not loaded with religious symbolism as a crucifix. People can wear head scarfs without being Muslim

#19 purplekitty

Posted 12 February 2013 - 10:49 PM

QUOTE (jayskette @ 12/02/2013, 10:31 PM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
I know for a fact that science teachers in a Catholic high school are not allowed to teach Darwin's theory.
Then they should lose government funding because they fall below a minimum educational standard IMO.
Isn't it part of the National Curriculum? I assume it is.
How do you teach evolution without discussing Darwin and natural selection.

#20 Guest_LeChatNinjah_*

Posted 12 February 2013 - 11:00 PM

peking, I do see your point, but is a headscarf at an Islamic school being touted as simply a random garment?

If it was a case of teachers supervising kids in the playground having to wear a hat to set a sun-safe example that would be different.



#21 kpingitquiet

Posted 12 February 2013 - 11:20 PM

Plenty of religiously homeschooled kids are permitted to graduate in the normal way when taught not one stitch of conventional scientific fact/thought. I don't see a difference.

I just looked at the National Curriculum as posted on it's website. It appears evolution is briefly addressed in Year 10, but the word "evolution" did not appear earlier than that. I quote:

"The theory of evolution by natural selection explains the diversity of living things and is supported by a range of scientific evidence (ACSSU185)"

"They evaluate the evidence for scientific theories that explain the origin of the universe and the diversity of life on Earth. They explain the processes that underpin heredity and evolution. "

It appears there is some further mention of it in senior school sciences but I don't have the patience to sort through all those at 10 mins to midnight biggrin.gif Regardless, it doesn't appear to be a rock-solid nor weighty aspect of the national curriculum.

#22 purplekitty

Posted 12 February 2013 - 11:31 PM

QUOTE (kpingitquiet @ 12/02/2013, 11:20 PM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
It appears there is some further mention of it in senior school sciences but I don't have the patience to sort through all those at 10 mins to midnight biggrin.gif Regardless, it doesn't appear to be a rock-solid nor weighty aspect of the national curriculum.
That is a major failing then.

I have no idea about homeschooling but would have thought they had to follow a curriculum as well.


#23 Guest_Sunnycat_*

Posted 13 February 2013 - 12:13 AM

I said this in the other thread but wearing a hijab is not written in the Qu'ran and its not something all Muslims choose to wear, so I don't really see what the point of forcing people to wear it is for.

I don't think religion should be in public schools other than teaching it as a subject and covering many religions. Otherwise I think it should be an elective subject.

Funnily enough I remember doing catholic studies at my public school when I lived in Sydney but not when I moved to Perth.

#24 Futhermore

Posted 13 February 2013 - 05:33 AM

Wrong thread :-)

Edited by ~maryanne~, 13 February 2013 - 05:34 AM.


#25 Angelot

Posted 13 February 2013 - 06:46 AM

QUOTE (LeChatNinjah @ 12/02/2013, 10:25 PM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
If you agree with this do you think science teachers in faith-based schools should be "forced" to teach Creationism?  I'm not talking religious teachers, but science teachers.

I admit I had a teeny bit of sympathy for the dress code thing, but I feel very strongly on creationism being taught as science anywhere.  

Is that too long a bow to draw?


I think it's too long a bow, because the issues in play are (I suspect) different.  I think it's likely that the headscarf requirement is a case of something like, "This is the standard of modesty our community finds acceptable.  This is what we are teaching/requiring of our students.  We expect you to uphold that."  

That is, to me, worlds away from tampering with the science curriculum because some fundamentalists take issue with it.  

QUOTE (LeChatNinjah @ 12/02/2013, 10:28 PM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
Would a Catholic school be allowed to make a crucifix part of staff uniform?  Would that have public support?


They probably wouldn't be able to (or want to) make it part of the uniform, but they do require other observances of their teachers (like leading students in prayer, and making the sign of the cross, saying the rosary, even, I think) which might be difficult if you weren't Catholic.  Again, it's about the community and its practices.

QUOTE (LeChatNinjah @ 12/02/2013, 11:24 PM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
If you want to wear a hijab, crucifix, nun's habit, burqa, yarmulke, saffron robe, Jedi cloak or anything else, then no one else has the right to tell you not to.


Actually, I find the wearing of habits by those who haven't made that commitment deeply offensive (probably mostly because I've seen it in contexts like the mardi gras).  A bit like wearing a clerical collar if you're not clergy; either pretending to be something you're not, or mocking the people who are.

As an aside, I definitely remember learning about evolution in primary school...there was a big poster on the wall, I think in grade five?, with a chart of different organisms evolving over millennia.




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