03 November 2016, The Tablet

Catholic schools need children of other faiths, says CES head

The director of the Catholic Education Service (CES) has described the concept of returning to schools segregated entirely by religion as “dreadful”, writes Rose Gamble. Paul Barber told TES, formerly the Times Educational Supplement, that he believed a move back to schools where all the pupils were of the same faith would benefit no one.

He reiterated his welcome for the Government’s announcement in September that it would scrap restrictions that prevented new, oversubscribed Catholic academies from selecting more than half of their students on the basis of their faith, and emphasised that Catholic schools were offering an “unapologetically Catholic education”.

However, if those of other faiths wanted to be a part of this, then they would be welcomed, he said. “That’s a real blessing for pupils: to have children of other faiths in our schools,” he added.

Non-Catholics, he argued, often choose to send their children to Catholic schools precisely because they share the values offered.

He told the TES that scrapping the 50 per cent cap on the admission of Catholics would enable the Church to open between 30 and 40 new schools.

  Loading ...
Get Instant Access
Subscribe to The Tablet for just £7.99

Subscribe today to take advantage of our introductory offers and enjoy 30 days' access for just £7.99