Sunday, January 21, 2007

Schools Admissions Code undermines Catholic schools

Current status: please protest to the responsible Government minister, Alan Johnson (send a message to him here). This is an attack on the Catholic ethos of Catholic schools. The proposals were opposed by Catholic schools and the Catholic Education Service when they appeared in draft form late last year; they have now been published with no account taken of the objections made to them. They are due to be in force from September 2007.

From the Catholic Herald (summary): the newly released Schools Admissions Code, which unlike its predecessor code has the force of law, prevents parents from specifying a Catholic (or any) school as 'first choice', and prevents schools from using any means to determine the religious commitment of a family other than baptismal records and a parish priest's reference. Accordingly no account can be taken of interviews of parents or children, children's interests and hobbies, etc.. Geographical proximity to the school will in some cases take priority over other considerations. The new code has been condemned by Catholic Headteachers and the Catholic Education Service. It may lead to Catholic children being turned away from Catholic schools while non-Catholics are admitted.

See links for: Catholic Herald front-page story (link will 'rot' when the next issue comes out)
Catholic Education Service response to the Code when it was drafted.
Department of Education press release introducing the Code.

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Pope Leo XIII's Prayer to St Michael

Holy Michael, Archangel, defend us in the day of battle. Be our safeguard against the wickedness and snares of the devil. May God rebuke him, we humbly pray, and do thou, Prince of the Heavenly Host, by the power of God, thrust down to Hell Satan, and all wicked spirits who wander through the world for the ruin of souls. Amen