Feardorcha wrote:I agree with Yellowfish on going to the local school. It is, after all, your school; you pay for it.
I differ on conforming with religious practices so that your child will not be regarded as different. We have reared our kids to recognise that all children are different (In fact being different is something all children have in common.) What of the child who is not white, has a limp, a hairlip; how does that child conform?
We have found that other kids are not in the least concerned with religion - and neither are teachers when it is clearly shown that you mean what you say. In fact, since we first declared that we and our kids don't do religion, several others have also 'come out'. We are no longer all that different.
In fairness I think it is safe to say we went about things the wrong way from the start, we should have declared our non belief upon entering the school and tried to put things in place and prepare the ground then, but we are both products of C/E primary schools where religion was a quick prayer about lambs laying down their heads to sleep as we were packing our bags at the end of the day, I went to 9 schools in my time and that was about the maximum religious instruction I received. Neither one of us understood how things would work and we didn't really feel things were going too far until he finished junior and senior infants and entered 1st year, we had some concerns but we did not relise how much things would accelerate.
However it is obviouse that whatever we may have done about RE he would still have received instruction through every other lesson, (Nature trails show Gods work and their is some saint that brings the spring?) our only realistic option is to remove him from his community and go for the educate together school 10 miles away,impossibly impractical for us and I feel a bad choice for him and his friendships within the village.
Perhaps we should push back harder, but we have reached an agreement that he will not do the full communion, I discussed with him the idea that he should not do it at all and use the lesson time for something else, but he was extremely distressed and given that school is his little world that he has to live in we agreed that he could now continue as it will make Little difference to the indoctrination anyway as it is in all lessons. I discuss our views with him when we do religious homework, but the fact is that he is a child and he wants to do what everyone else in class does.
Not proud of our choices and decisions, but we have to live with them, the battle for me is to get this out of schools all together and put an end to the nonsense.