Sikhs: Curriculum

Department for Education written question – answered on 20th October 2021.

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Photo of Alex Sobel Alex Sobel Shadow Minister (Digital, Culture, Media and Sport)

To ask the Secretary of State for Education, whether he has made an assessment of the potential merits of increasing education around the Sikh faith in Key Stage 1 of the national curriculum.

Photo of Robin Walker Robin Walker The Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State for Scotland, Minister of State (Education)

There are no plans to introduce teaching about specific faiths in any of the subjects of the national curriculum at any of the key stages.

The teaching about the Sikh faith by any school would be expected to be part of the religious education (RE) curriculum. The RE curriculum must reflect the fact that the religious traditions in the UK are in the main Christian, whilst taking account of the teaching and practices of the principal religions represented in the UK, including Sikhism.

The RE curriculum is part of the basic curriculum, rather than one of the subjects within the national curriculum. In addition, the RE curriculum is compulsory in all state-funded schools from age 5 to 18, which includes Key Stage 1.

Schools have the freedom to include content about specific faiths as part of their teaching of the subjects in the national curriculum, such as history or citizenship, but this would need to be in line with the purpose and aims of the subjects themselves.

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