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Forthcoming Events:

For information on forthcoming events please email R dot Wareham at warwick dot ac dot uk or follow us on Twitter (@FSPPWarwick)

Past Events:

Workshop on Faith Schools, Social Cohesion, and Civic Virtue

University of Warwick, Friday 16th June, 2017

The workshop explored the issue of whether faith schools pose a threat to social cohesion and provide a sub-optimal environment for cultivating civic virtues such as toleration and respect. It will address this issue from a range of disciplinary perspectives.



Eamonn Callan, Pigott Family Professor, School of Education, Stanford University (summariser and discussant)

Miles Hewstone, Professor of Social Psychology, Department of Experimental Psychology, University of Oxford

Michael Merry, Professor of Philosophy, Department of Child Development and Education, University of Amsterdam

Ian MacMullen, Professor of Political Science, Department of Political Science, Washington University in St Louis

Carol Vincent, Professor of the Sociology of Education, Institute of Education, University College London

Regulating Faith Schools Conference

University of Warwick, 10th November 2015

This conference brought together educationalists and spokespeople from various religious organisations and public bodies to discuss the present state of the regulation of schools with a religious character in England and Wales. Recent governments have attempted to increase diversity by introducing academies and free schools, with greater emphasis on the variety of school 'providers' and more scope for parental choice. This new institutional landscape offers opportunities to those who value schooling with a distinctively religious character, but it also prompts worries about social cohesion and alarms those who fear that faith-based schooling threatens children's autonomy.

Speakers and participants reflected on a range of issues and questions relating to faith-based education. Who should be allowed to open a free school or sponsor an academy? What governance and employment arrangements should apply to schools with a distinctively religious character? How much discretion should faith-based schools—whether publicly funded or independent—have over the curriculum? How should admissions be regulated? The conference considered the current situation with the help of speakers from a variety of religious and non-religious perspectives and explored the ways in which it might realistically be improved.


Paul Barber (Director of the Catholic Education Service)

Tim Brighouse (Honorary Fellow, Department of Education, University of Oxford; Schools Commissioner for London, 2002-2007)

Ashfaque Chowdhury (Chair of the Association of Muslim Schools)

Charles Clarke (Visiting Professor at UEA and the University of Lancaster; Secretary of State for Education and Skills, 2002-2004)

Simon Goulden (Educational consultant to the Jewish Community)

Marilyn Mason (formerly Education Officer, The British Humanist Association)