Guardian editorial praises Accord

February 26, 2010

It has been a busy week for Accord, with the debate about Sex and Relationships Education taking taking place across the media and in parliament. In the end the amendment that the Accord Coalition and many others objected to – which aimed to allow faith schools to teach Personal, Social, Health and Economic education (PSHE) in line with their religious ethos – was passed without a debate because of a lack of parliamentary time and as part of a broad group of amendments.

Nevertheless, the faith school amendment on PSHE was clearly of serious concern to MPs, with Lib Dem Children, Schools and Families shadow David Laws saying:

“In spite of what the Secretary of State and the Minister have told us, the sad risk is that we will have sex and relationship education that will mean that, however objective some of the information being delivered is, young people in some schools with some faiths will be told that they are less worthy and less equal and that they are participating in less legitimate forms of activity in their lives, because the Government’s good intentions in this area have been stymied by this late amendment that we have not had an opportunity to consider. That makes me genuinely sad, because the Government, who might be just a few weeks away from the end of their period in office, have had a genuinely good record and reputation on challenging prejudice and inequality of opportunity.”

Accord and its member organisations have had a high profile role in the debate on the future of PSHE but it was still an unexpected bonus for the coalition to be praised in the Guardian editorial on Wednesday:

Finally, we would like to say thanks to all of the Accord supporters who got in contact with their MPs about this issue. We will make sure to keep you updated about the Bill as it reaches the Lords.

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