Agenda and draft minutes

Standing Advisory Council on Religious Education (SACRE) - Wednesday, 14th July, 2021 4.00 pm

Venue: Committee Room 1, County Hall, Morpeth, NE61 2EF

Contact: Rebecca Little 

Items
No. Item

1.

MEMBERSHIP AND TERMS OF REFERENCE pdf icon PDF 109 KB

(a)  To report the membership and terms of reference of the Standing Advisory Council on Religious Education for the 2021/2022 Council year. 

           

(b)  To consider making the Humanist representative a member of Committee A (Other Faiths). 

 

Minutes:

(a)  The membership and terms of reference of the Standing Advisory Council     on Religious Education for the 2021/2022 Council year.

RECOMMENDED that this was noted

 

(b)  The committee was asked to consider making the Humanist representative a member of Committee A (Other Faiths)

RECOMMENDED that a Humanist representative be added to the membership of Committee A (Other Faiths). 

 

2.

ELECTION OF CHAIR

To note the election of Councillor G. Renner-Thompson as Chair of the Standing Advisory Council on Religious Education for the ensuing 2021/2022 Council year. 

Minutes:

Councillor Renner-Thompson had been appointed Chair by Council but was happy to stand aside should another member be preferred for the post.

No nominations were received.

 

RECOMMENDEDthat the appointment of Councillor Renner-Thompson be noted.

3.

APOLOGIES FOR ABSENCE

Minutes:

Apologies were received from Mrs. E. Bainbridge and Bhakti Rasa Adhikhara

 

4.

MINUTES pdf icon PDF 144 KB

Minutes of the meeting of the Northumberland Standing Advisory Council on Religious Education (SACRE), held on 3 February 2021, as circulated, to be confirmed as a true record, and signed by the Chair.

Minutes:

RECOMMENDED that the minutes of the meeting of the Standing Advisory Council on Religious Education held on 3 February 2021, as circulated, be confirmed as a true record and signed by the Chair.

 

5.

ELECTION OF VICE CHAIR

To elect a Vice-Chair of the Standing Advisory Council on Religious Education for the ensuing 2021/2022 Council year. 

Minutes:

RECOMENDED that Mrs D. Van-Der-Velde was elected as Vice-Chair of the Standing Advisory Council on Religious Education.

 

6.

AN UPDATE OF CONTACTS WITH SCHOOLS AND TRAINING PROVISION

To receive an update from Caroline Weir, Part-time RE Consultant about the provision of RE in-service training and contacts with schools since the last related meeting. 

Minutes:

Ms. C. Weir, RE Consultant, informed Members that she had been preparing for the Agreed Syllabus Conference meeting.  She had been gathering data from teachers on a one-to-one settings as well as conferences, networking meetings with primary, middle and special schools, however there had been no secondary schools to take part in these meetings.


The committee discussed what options there were available to better support special schools, including bringing in objects so students could feel and interact with such as “David’s Harp”.  There was also discussion of possibly taking the students to places of worship, however, Covid restrictions prohibited that for the time-being.

 

It was also noted that there was a lack of students in secondary schools taking RE as a GSCE and A-Level due to the schools not providing it, therefore, there was also a lack of degree-level RE education and nowhere in Northumberland to train teachers in this specialist subject in RE.

 

The committee thanked Caroline for her continued work.

 

RECOMMENDED that the verbal report from the RE Consultant be noted.

 

7.

NORTHUMBERLAND SACRE NEWSLETTER pdf icon PDF 1 MB

(a)  To receive a copy of the 43rd issue of the Northumberland SACRE newsletter, dated April 2021. 

 

(b)  To consider new arrangements new arrangements for the distribution of the SACRE newsletter. 

 

Minutes:

The committee discussed the option of changing the format of the SACRE newsletter, as the current format was one term behind due to printing deadlines and was expensive to create and publish.  This money could be better spent elsewhere.


The committee discussed options on types of format and it was agreed that delivering the newsletter on an online format would be looked at rather than printed as that would be more effective due to cost benefits, printing schedules and would be able to engage a wider audience.

 

RECOMMENDED that

 

(1)  the 43rd issue of the Northumberland SACRE newsletter, dated April 2021, be received.

(2) future editions of the newsletter be published online rather than on paper

8.

NASACRE ISSUES pdf icon PDF 7 MB

(a)  The NASACRE Newsletter – SACRE News– Issue?28? 

?? 

To receive the?latest?newsletters?– for information. 

? 

Reminder of web site link:??www.nasacre.org.uk? for other interesting articles.? 

?? 

(b) The NASACRE/Westhill Awards 2021/22 

 

To receive an update regarding any known applications for Westhill Awards in the 2021/22 round.  

 

Minutes:

The committee discussed whether SACRE members could work together to apply to the Westhill awards on behalf of teachers.
Update to follow at next meeting

 

           

(a)  It was RECOMMENDED that the copy of the NASACRE newsletter – Issue 28, had been received.

(b) RECOMENDED.  There had been no new applications for the Westhill Awards in the 2021/22 round.

9.

A REPORT FROM NASACRE: SACRE FUNDING IN ENGLAND pdf icon PDF 385 KB

To consider the recent report produced by NASACRE regarding funding. 

Minutes:

D. Cookson – Commissioner for Secondary Education and Post 16 Provision, made the committee that there had been a freedom of information request around funding for SACRE.

SACRE was funded differently across the country with Northumberland being on the lower end of funding. Northumberland SACRE had received double funding this year, as it did every five years. SACRE received 0.06% of the Dedicated Schools Grant and members had the ability request up to 2% of funding if required.

 

10.

NORTHUMBERLAND SACRE ACTION PLAN JANUARY 2019 TO DECEMBER 2021 pdf icon PDF 158 KB

To monitor the Northumberland SACRE Action Plan January 2019-December 2021 and points raised following the School Survey about RE and Collective Worship.   

Minutes:

The Standing Advisory Council on Religious Education agreed that a new action plan should be written, as these ran in line with academic years and the new plan should be in place by September 2021.


Since the start of the pandemic there had been no collective worship in schools, this should also return in September 2021, and the SACRE committee would look at how to support that.


The SACRE committee discussed the ongoing issues with attendance and membership, it was suggested that the membership of those who did not regularly attend should be reviewed. Consideration should be given to identifying new potential members, and to include representatives from teacher associations.

 

RECOMMENDED that this was agreed.

 

11.

DATE AND TIME OF NEXT AND FUTURE MEETINGS

Wednesday, 17 November 2021 

Wednesday, 2 February 2022 

 

Minutes:

Wednesday, 17 November 2021

Wednesday, 2 February 2022

 

RECOMMENDED that the dates of next future meetings be noted. 

 

12.

AGREED SYLLABUS CONFERENCE AGENDA pdf icon PDF 133 KB

The Agreed Syllabus Conference has, by law, to review the County’s Agreed Syllabus for RE every five years.  The ASC will consider the outcomes of the ASC working group.  All SACRE members will be expected to attend in order that we can conduct formal business.

Minutes:

­­­­­NORTHUMBERLAND COUNTY COUNCIL

 

STANDING ADVISORY COUNCIL ON RELIGIOUS EDUCATION

 

A meeting of the Standing Advisory Council on Religious Education (SACRE) on Wednesday, 14 July 2021 at 4.00 p.m.

 

PRESENT

 

CHAIR

 

C. Weir

 

 

COUNCILLORS

 

L. Bowman

N. Morphet

G. Renner-Thompson

T. Thorne

 

 

 

 

TEACHER’S ASSOCIATIONS/UNIONS REPRESENTATIVES

 

 

 

 

 

CHURCH OF ENGLAND REPRESENTATIVES

 

Hudson, C.

 

 

 

REPRESENTATIVES OF OTHER CHURCHES & FAITHS

 

Marley, Rev. E.H.

Van Der Velde, Mrs. D.

Miller, Dr, J.

 

 

 

CO-OPTED REPRESENTATIVES

 

Dearlove, S.

 

 

OFFICERS IN ATTENDANCE

 

 

Bennett, L

Cookson, D

 

Little, R.

Senior Democratic Services Officer

Commissioner for Secondary Education

Assistant Democratic Services Officer

 


 

1.       Agreed Syllabus Conference

 

C. Weir, RE Consultant, provided a presentation which highlighted the roles of the ASC members explaining that it was a separate legal body from a SACRE committee.

 

It was noted that the meeting was not quorate, therefore any decisions made were made in principle and would be agreed fully when members have agreed the minutes from this meeting.

 

The ASC members were asked to read the current Agreed Syllabus and the recommendations from the Commission on RE, this had been completed by members prior to the meeting.

The Chair reported that in their opinion as an RE consultant that Northumberland County Council’s syllabus on RE education was out of date, it had been updated slightly but not completely remodelled in the last 15 years and that the committee should decide on the best course of action for a new syllabus for the coming year.
The committee discussed the best options for a new syllabus, the options were:

 

·       Keep the AS in its current format.

·       Update the current AS in full to take account for educational changes

·       Write a new AS in full

·       Purchase a syllabus from a local authority who had just updated theirs – this would mean that the syllabus would be regimented, and Northumberland Council would not be able to have any input.

·       Purchase a new syllabus from RE today, this would mean that Northumberland County Council would have the opportunity to have a discussion around what they would like to see in the syllabus. 

 

 

The members decided that the best course of action was to purchase a new syllabus and then heavily customise it making it suitable to Northumberland residents.
A short-list of syllabuses that were available to buy and customise would be drawn up, using the aim of “To enable pupils to acquire knowledge and understanding and to engage critically with the significance and impact of religion, world views, secularity and spirituality in the twenty first century.”



It was recommended by five votes for to one against, that:
Work should commence on creation of the shortlist of syllabuses, prior to full agreement at the next quorate meeting.

 

 

 

 

CHAIR: ____________________


DATE:         _____________________