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UK Schools Scrap BC and AD from Religion Lessons

More schools in the UK are removing B.C. (Before Christ) and A.D. (Anno Domini, meaning “the year of the Lord”) in religious education lessons to avoid offending minorities or non-believers, The Telegraph reports.

In place of the historical terms B.C. and A.D., schools now use BCE (Before Common Era) and CE (Common Era), which are said to be the more “politically-correct chronological form.”

Former Archbishop of Canterbury Lord Carey said, “I have never met a Muslim or Jewish leader who is offended by the Gregorian calendar.” It may have been a trend in schools but it was a “great shame.”

Teachers in East Sussex and Essex are among those who are adapting the BCE/CE terms. In the schools’ religious education syllabus, it states, “BCE and CE are now used in order to show sensitivity to those who are not Christians.”

Standing Advisory Councils for Religious Education (SACREs) developed the religious education syllabus. According to the 2017 RE syllabus, “BCE/CE is becoming an industry standard among historians. Pupils have to be able to recognize these terms when they come across them.”

Meantime, religious leaders–including Muslims and Jewish heads, denounced SACREs for ditching BC/AD from academic lessons, reports Mail Online.

Former Archbishop of Canterbury Lord Carey said, “I have never met a Muslim or Jewish leader who is offended by the Gregorian calendar.” It may have been a trend in schools but it was a “great shame.”

An imam from Leicester, Ibrahim Mogra, said he was confused about the reason BC/AD was altered in schools. He explained that the traditional terms were not offensive to Muslims. The Board of Deputies of British Jews also remarked, “I don’t think anyone would mind if in mainstream schools they use BC and AD.”

However, Paul Smalley, chair of the National Association of Standing Advisory Councils on Religious Education, clarified that local authority committees and schools were responsible for choosing which “form of dating is appropriate.”

Sources:
The Telegraph
Mail Online

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