Former student blows the lid off Emmanuel College’s creationist cover-up

In 2015 I was speaking at a geek convention, where I ran into two excellent people (and a lot of other excellent people, actually, but two I'm going to tell you about). One of them went to an ACE school in Oxfordshire, and the other one, who I'll call Esther, went to Emmanuel College, Gateshead. After my talk we all went for a curry, and as we were walking, Esther started talking about how she'd been taught creationism at the school.This is an explosive allegation. There was a minor media … [Read more...]

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UK religious schools inspectorate takes a pounding from Ofsted

Last Wednesday, I told you about the Bridge Schools Inspectorate (BSI), a collaboration between the Christian Schools Trust and the Association of Muslim Schools UK which means that these bodies get to pick their own inspectors. This way the schools also avoid inspection by Ofsted. Instead Ofsted monitors the BSI's inspections and annually reports on their quality. In the latest report Ofsted has found that in a majority of cases the BSI did not "provide clear and balanced assessments of the sc … [Read more...]

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33 jaw-droppingly bad multiple-choice questions from Accelerated Christian Education

"It's the crapness!" yelled my mother, who almost never says anything more offensive than 'oh blow'."It's not the doctrine or the terrible science or the politics. It's the... CRAPNESS!"In hindsight, leaving three boxes of Packets of Accelerated Christian Education (PACEs) at her house was perhaps not the kindest thing I could have done."It's a bubble!" she continued, warming to her rant. "It's stuck in a 1950s timewarp and it's all so twee. Do you know what I read in a science PACE e … [Read more...]

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A neutral observer’s view of ACE schools

This is from the Times Educational Supplement, Scotland, July 2007:"The modest building is home to the River of Life Christian School, where pupils aged 5 to 18 sit quietly in a network of booths and work through a vast pile of booklets throughout their school days.Standard grade and Higher are unfamiliar terms here. Individualised learning with a religious thread is preferred, built around the American Accelerated Christian Education system. Testing goes on throughout each child's time at … [Read more...]

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Dawkins on Accelerated Christian Education (again) and Ofsted Reports

In his diary for the New Statesman in 2006, Richard Dawkins shared this on Accelerated Christian Education:"One of my TV locations was a London school that follows the (American) Accelerated Christian Education (ACE) syllabus. The day after watching my show, three colleagues told me they had interviewed, for a place at university, a young woman who had been taught (not at the same school) using ACE. She turned out to be the worst candidate they had ever encountered. She had no idea that … [Read more...]

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The Way Ahead – Recommendations for Faith Schools

On Friday, I examined the Alberta Department of Education's views on Accelerated Christian Education. As part of its report, the Committee on Tolerance and Understanding made recommendations on educational policy to correct the problems it found. I think these make a reasonable skeleton for a public policy that could be implemented to ensure better education, and limiting poisonous systems like ACE. Lets look at their suggestions.Actually, before we do, I'd like to post this quotation from … [Read more...]

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