FAO: Damian Hinds MP, Secretary of State for Education

Dear Mr Hinds,

We (the signatories to this petition) urge you to end discrimination in faith school admissions.

Voluntary aided schools and academies with a religious character are given special exemptions from equality law that allow them to discriminate against pupils whose families do not share the faith of the school. This is unfair, unnecessary and fuels segregation in our society.

In a society as diverse as ours, rather than facilitating segregation along religious lines, the Government should be doing everything it can to ensure that children of all faiths and none are educated together in inclusive schools.

If the Government wishes to "promote inclusivity", it is clear that facilitating religiously selective schools is, by definition, inimical to this aim.

We therefore urge you to consider ways of ending religious discrimination and segregation in our schools – rather than extending it, as proposals to open more 100% selective voluntary aided schools would.

Please rethink these proposals and instead ensure that all of our schools are open and inclusive, catering for all local children regardless of their families' religious or non-religious beliefs.

End religious discrimination in school admissions

A selection of petition signatures

"It's important that education includes social mixing with various faiths, and non-believers, and my children, now grown up, benefited immensely from this. I want my grandchildren to do so also."

Hope

"This would be overtly discriminatory, and would have a damaging effect on communities. Any school receiving state funding should not be allowed to discriminate, and should be forced to serve their local communities. The cap (whatever the proportion) is a social good."

Matthew

"Abolishing the cap is a discriminatory, regressive small-minded measure that encourages isolated communities and prejudice."

Richard