Queensland state schools embrace a multitude of cultural, religious and non-religious beliefs. Under the Education (General Provisions) Act 2006, schools are to provide Religious Instruction (RI) if approached by a faith group seeking to provide RI and students of that faith attend the school.
RI informs students about the beliefs and values of a particular religion. It is delivered by volunteers of a faith group using instructional materials approved by that faith group. RI is required to be consistent with legislation and Department of Education policies and procedures.
All RI instructors must hold a blue card and participate in compulsory Student Protection and Code of Conduct training. RI instructors are only entitled to deliver the RI program outlined below. A school staff member will be present during the delivery of RI.
Participation in RI is not compulsory. Any student (except Prep students) may participate in RI if a parent has provided written instructions to the school.
Students are allocated to RI based on information provided by parents on the completed Application for student enrolment unless other written instructions have been provided to the school.
Note: This consent remains in effect unless the parent informs the school otherwise in writing.
A description of the RI available is provided below.
Uniting Church Religious Instruction
Authorised program: Connect (CEP) Christian Education Program
Aims and goals: Connect is a three-year (Special) Religious Education curriculum designed for use in Australian and New Zealand schools. It is Bible-based and offers 20 lessons each semester at Infants, Lower Primary and Upper Primary Levels.
The curriculum has as its foundation the belief that it is important to allow the Bible's own theological framework to determine what is taught and how it is taught. It is therefore content-structured, teaching the major events, concepts and doctrines of the Bible.
This curriculum is also student-related. It is designed to engage students' minds and emotions as well as develop the skills needed for students to explore the nature and content of the Christian faith.
Lesson structure: 30 mins/once per week.
Parents of students participating in these programs will be advised if a faith group requires funds to cover the expense of materials used in RI.
Students who are not participating in RI will be provided with other instruction in a separate supervised location. Other instruction must relate to part of a subject area already covered in class and may include:
- personal research and/or assignments
- revision of class work such as creative writing or literacy and/or numeracy activities which could include online programs currently accessed by the students of that school (i.e. Mathletics, Reading Eggs)
- wider reading such as independent reading appropriate to the student
Parents will be advised of any changes to the RI and other instruction programs to ensure they are able to make an informed decision on their child's participation.