Despite constitutional efforts to protect one’s freedom from religion, God and religion continues to be imposed on Australians who do not wish to receive Him.

The key changes relate to the switch from an “opt-out” to an “opt-in” arrangement, which requires parents to positively consent to their child receiving SRI. Principals can decide to cancel SRI based on low opt-in numbers or if they believe the programs go against the values of the school.

The changes have clearly unsettled Access Ministries, prompting the general manager of Christian Education and Training, Linda White to implore the audience to: “Embrace the opportunity we still have … to enhance our relevance.” And she added: “We live in a religious world.”

Supporters were also urged to pray for “Principals … that they would not daunted or dismayed by the challenges of the new Ministerial Direction”.

It is no wonder that Fairness in Religion in Schools – a parent-run, grassroots  group which has brought the teaching of religion in schools to public attention – has been approached by parents voicing their concerns about tactics used by certain state schools to get parents to sign the the opt in form.

READ THE COMPLETE ORIGINAL ARTICLE HERE AT THE AGE (4 AUGUST 2014 BY secondary school teacher and writer Chris Fotinopoulos)

READ ALSO RECENT EDITORIAL IN THE AGE: “PLAYING GAMES WITH RELIGION IN SCHOOLS” – 1 AUGUST 2014

Illustration: Matt Golding
Illustration: Matt Golding