Secular Education Forum

The Secular Education Forum (SEF) provides expert and professional advice and opinion to the National Secular Society (NSS) on issues related to education and provides a forum for anyone with expertise in the intersection of education and secularism.

The SEF's main objective is to advocate the value of secularism/religious neutrality as a professional standard in education. The SEF welcomes supporters of all faiths and none. It provides expert support for the NSS working towards a secular education system free from religious privilege, proselytization, partisanship or discrimination.

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Membership of the Secular Education Forum is intended for education professionals (including current, former and trainee professionals) and those with a particular expertise in the intersection of secularism and education. All requests to join will be considered after signing up to the mailing list.

Education blogs and commentary

A selection of blogs and comment pieces on education and secularism. For education news from the NSS, please click here.

The David and Goliath battle in our schools: parents versus religion

Thu, 11 Jan 2018

As NSS research highlights a systemic bias against secular schooling, Megan Manson explores the tactics used by religion to infiltrate education – and how parents are fighting back.

Case study: Difficulty exercising the right to withdraw from collective worship

Wed, 03 Jan 2018

Thanks to campaigning by the NSS, sixth formers have the right to withdraw themselves from collective worship. But faith schools often make this nigh-on-impossible, as this pupil's story from one academy shows.

Home schooling debate must prompt wider discussion of children’s rights

Thu, 30 Nov 2017

As supporters of a new Bill aim to see home schooling in England registered for the first time, education and schools campaigner Alastair Lichten says children's independent rights must receive greater focus.

A lesson in silencing dissent: the controversy of hijab in schools

Tue, 28 Nov 2017

Yasmin Rehman was among campaigners who recently met Ofsted's chief inspector to discuss veiling in schools. Now, she writes, some powerful Muslims are making sinister efforts to silence her and her fellow activists.

Big ideas for religious education?

Thu, 23 Nov 2017

The latest report into the problems with religious education reiterates the need to start with a fundamental examination of the subject's purpose. But, Alastair Lichten wonders, do the proposals go far enough?