Friday, 29 January 2010

My wife and I will not be donating to the Catholic Education Service this weekend

In many parts of England and Wales this weekend there will be a special collection for the Catholic Education Service (CESEW). (Pictured right are Ms Oonagh Stannard, the chief executive and director of the CESEW with Mr Ed Balls MP, Secretary of State for Children, Schools and Families.) My wife and I will not be giving a donation - and this is why:

The CESEW welcomes into Catholic schools Connexions, a British government agency. Connexions’ staff are trained* to tell children that they have a right of access to abortion and contraception without parental knowledge or consent. SPUC has evidence of Connexions’ staff giving children such information in Catholic schools. In addition, the Connexions website includes pages promoting abortion and contraception to children.

(2) CESEW is giving general support to the British government’s legislative proposals to require all state schools to teach sex and relationships education throughout the school years (from ages five to 18). (N.B. The state schooling system in England and Wales includes the majority of Catholic schools.) The British government has stated clearly that its proposals have been drafted to entrench a form of sex education which promotes access to abortion and contraception in all state schools, including in Catholic schools.

CESEW has defended itself on these matters. CESEW’s defence, however:
• fails to present Catholic teaching on sex education
• is at variance with Catholic teaching on sex education
• provides no credible evidence for its claim that, under the government's proposals, Catholic schools will be able to uphold Catholic teaching on sexual ethics
• leaves pupils in non-Catholic schools (which are attended by many Catholics) at the mercy of the full force of government-specified pro-abortion sex education
• endorses the presence of on-site sexual health clinics at schools, including in Catholic schools.

*Connexions, “Young people and sexual health – A Reader for those participating in the Connexions’ training programme”, Crown Copyright 2003.

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