RELIGIOUS, MORAL & PHILOSOPHICAL STUDIES
E. Sutherland – Principal Teacher of RMPS
A. Marrison – Teacher of RMPS
C. Reid - Temporary Teacher
Schools must provide religious and moral education to every young person in accordance with their legal requirements. Religious and moral education is a statutory core subject for all pupils attending primary and secondary education, including those in years S5 and S6, and it is their entitlement to have this taught in a meaningful and progressive way. In Belmont Academy one period per week is dedicated to RME in the Broad General Education. In S4 RME is taught through a thematic approach and in the Senior Phase S5 will have one period of the week dedicated to RME. We are exploring ways in which we can deliver the full entitlement to S6.
Education about faith and belief in schools contributes to the development of the whole person, allowing young people to consider, reflect upon, and respond to important questions about the meaning and purpose of existence, the range and depth of human experience and what is ultimately worthwhile and valuable in life. It increases young people's awareness of the spiritual dimension of human life through exploring the world's major religions and views, including those which are independent of religious belief, and considering the challenges posed by those beliefs and values. It supports young people in developing and reflecting upon their own values and their capacity for moral judgement.
Opportunity for religious observance is fostered through the termly involvement of our School Chaplain and planned assemblies. Services are held at Remembrance, Christmas and Easter. Under the terms of the Education (Scotland) Act, parents have the right to withdraw their child from religious observance. The terms of the Act state that “no pupil in any such school shall be placed at any disadvantage with respect to the secular instruction given therein by reason of his being withdrawn”. At Belmont Academy we will deal with such requests with sensitivity and understanding. Our Head Teacher will happily meet with any parent wishing to withdraw their child to ensure that they are clear about the school policy. In particular, parents should be reassured that religious observance adopts an open and respectful approach and does not seek to compromise the beliefs of any pupils or their families. Where a child is withdrawn from religious observance, Belmont Academy will make suitable arrangements for your child to participate in a worthwhile alternative activity. In no circumstances will a child be disadvantaged from being withdrawn from religious observance.
Parents with different faiths or beliefs other than Christianity may request that their children be permitted to be absent from school in order to celebrate recognised religious events. Only written requests detailing the proposed arrangements will be considered. Appropriate requests will be granted on not more than three occasions (days) in any one school session and the pupil noted as an authorised absentee in the register.
More information can be found on religious observance as set out in the Scottish Government Circular dated 21 February 2011, ‘Curriculum for Excellence – Provision of Religious Observance in Schools’.
National 5 RMPS
The course develops a range of cognitive skills. It encourages active learning in the process of investigating religious, moral and philosophical issues. Candidates learn to express viewpoints and have the opportunity for personal reflection.
Candidates develop a wide range of important and transferable skills including accurate recording of information, researching resources, analysing and evaluating beliefs and values, and expressing reasoned personal opinions in a variety of contexts.
The National 5 Religious, Moral and Philosophical Studies course has three areas of study. In each area, candidates focus on one of the world’s six major religions (Buddhism, Christianity, Hinduism, Islam, Judaism, Sikhism). The range of contexts for study is flexible to allow for personalisation and choice. Each area offers opportunities for candidates to focus on particular skills.
The areas of study are:
Candidates study religion and its impact, relevance and significance through studying some key beliefs and practices found in one major world religion, and the contribution these make to the lives of followers.
Morality and Belief
Candidates study moral issues and their background, implications and responses through studying one major moral issue and responses to it.
Religious and Philosophical Questions
Candidates study the issues raised by religious and philosophical questions, their implications and responses by studying one question and responses to it.
The course encourages active learning in the process of investigating religious, moral and philosophical topics or issues. Through the course as a whole, candidates take a broad overview of the beliefs, values or viewpoints of more than one religion.
Candidates develop and apply a range of cognitive skills over a range of religious, moral and philosophical contexts in three areas of study: world religion, morality and belief, and religious and philosophical questions. Each area offers opportunities for candidates to focus on particular skills, and has flexibility in the topics which candidates can study.
Candidates study one of the world’s six major religions: Buddhism, Christianity, Hinduism, Islam, Judaism or Sikhism.
Candidates develop in-depth knowledge and understanding of the impact and significance of religion today. They study key beliefs and practices of one of the world’s six major religions and the contribution these make to the lives of followers.
Morality and belief
Candidates develop skills to evaluate and express detailed, reasoned and well-structured views about contemporary moral questions and responses. They develop in-depth knowledge and understanding of contemporary moral questions, and religious and non-religious responses to these. Candidates study religious viewpoints from one of the world’s six major religions.
Religious and philosophical questions
Candidates develop skills to critically analyse religious and philosophical questions and responses. They study religious viewpoints from one of the world’s six major religions.
Advanced Higher RMPS
Candidates develop and apply a range of cognitive skills across three areas of study:
philosophy of religion
Each area offers opportunities for candidates to focus on particular skills, and has flexibility in the topics they can study.
The course encourages active learning. Throughout the course, candidates take a broad overview of the beliefs, values or viewpoints of more than one religion.
Candidates study two of the three areas of study — one mandatory and one optional.
Philosophy of religion — mandatory
Candidates develop skills to critically evaluate a range of issues arising from the philosophy of religion. They develop in-depth knowledge and understanding of key arguments and responses to these arguments.
Medical ethics — optional
Candidates develop skills to critically evaluate a range of issues involving medical ethics. They develop in-depth knowledge and understanding of the issues, and of religious and other responses to them, including the philosophical reasoning behind these responses.
Religious experience — optional
Candidates develop skills to critically evaluate a range of issues concerning religious experience, and of religious and other responses to them. They develop in-depth knowledge and understanding of different perspectives on religious experience.