Government could challenge High Court ruling over RS GCSE

The High Court ruled that the Department for Education’s (DfE) claim that the new GCSE would ‘fulfil the entirety of the state's [religious education] duties’ was ’false and misleading’.

The legal case was launched by the families of three pupils who argued that the new qualification would sideline humanism and give pupils the impression that religion has a ‘monopoly on truth and morality’.

The DfE has said that it disagrees with ‘some aspects’ of the court’s decision, and that the government is seeking leave to appeal directly to the Court of Appeal over the ruling after the High Court refused it permission to appeal.

A DfE spokesperson said: “We fully accept there is a proper place for the consideration of non-religious worldviews in a religious education curriculum.

“The judgment does not require changes to the structure or content of the new RS GCSEs. The new GCSEs will ensure pupils understand the diversity of religious and non-religious beliefs in Great Britain.  In future, for the first time, all pupils studying RS GCSE will need to study two religions rather than just one.”

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