Madam, – Neil Barbour (April 11) opines that inequalities still exist in religious groups and their schools; with their exemptions from equality legislation being from the secularist point of view, unacceptable.
I have argued in the past that denominational schools (in Scotland the Catholic schools) are well worth these exemptions as recent evidence from statistics supplied by the Scottish Government shows.
Firstly, the percentage of secondary schools that take more than half of pupils from deprived data zones – Catholic schools 21% while non-denominational schools take 8%.
Secondly, the percentage of secondary schools that hit or exceed exam benchmarks: Catholic schools 63% and non-denominational 45%.
The main conclusion is that Catholic schools, due to their mission as followers of Jesus Christ in loving and caring for every individual and loving God and neighbour have an ethos which is shown in these statistics.
How could Mr Barbour want to deprive Catholic schools – their centenary anniversary was celebrated recently – from the community at large who value their ethos and the exam results?
Secularists do not want the church to be involved in any way with the education of pupils.
They would rather offer reduced choice to the parents of school children and curb the spiritual aspect of a young person’s development.
This would mean a lower standard of education in Scotland.
Perhaps what we need to close the attainment gap is more Catholic-run schools.
47 Grove Road,
Sharia Law stalks Britain
Madam, – The new divorce “reform” rewards caprice, short-termism, entitlement, divisiveness, impatience and power-imbalance.
It deserts steadiness, equality, maturity, peacefulness, responsibility, kindness, faithfulness: the long-haul mentality.
This move towards Sharia Law may please Justin Welby but it won’t solve the interminable squabbles over finances
Rev Dr John Cameron.
10 Howard Place,
Councillors must cooperate
Madam, – I read the letter from Alister Allen (April 9) about the “peculiar” situation regarding the Perth and Kinross Council chaos over increasing the cost of music lessons.
Over the last few weeks various rival politicians have taken the Tories to task over this not-so-comic situation. It means that parents may have to pay extra for music tuition until Perth and Kinross Council can arrange to legally refund them.
Apparently the poor Tories need the opposition councillors to agree to rectify their mistake.
But the tribalism prevalent in Scottish politics and echoed in Westminster seems to be more important than common sense.
Why don’t they just agree and put parents out of their misery?
122 Dunsinane Drive,
Why no apology from Leavers?
Madam, – I wonder if your Leave correspondents could be discouraged from always referring to the European Union as corrupt and undemocratic?
The label seems particularly inappropriate when preparations for EU elections are in progress and when strenuous efforts are being made by Westminster to avoid a democratic endorsement or otherwise of its EU withdrawal proposals.
Needless to say, no apology ever seems needed for the false promises and dishonest funding of the various Leave organisations.
7 Oxford Street,
SNP position on Brexit is clear
Madam, – Martin Redfern deliberately distorts the truth when he states that our SNP representatives in Westminster refused to support Ken Clark’s softish Brexit because they want a “very hard brexit or a no deal”.
The SNP group actually voted instead for the much softer Brexit option which would have kept the UK in the single market and the customs union.
The SNP are the only one of the three big parties who have been clear from the start that they support remaining in the EU because that is what the people of Scotland voted for.
But, at this late stage, when there is a very real danger of the UK leaving with a disastrous bad deal, or a calamitous no deal, they are prepared, unlike the totally divided and self-seeking Tory and Labour parties, to compromise in favour of the least worst deal.
As for Mr Redfern and his Scotland in Union colleagues, their keyboards must be red hot with their attempts to divert attention from the state of the dis-union.
5 Carmichael Gardens,
We are killing our high streets
Madam, – If we want town centres to thrive, don’t build out-of-town retail parks with free parking.
Organisations struggle valiantly to revive Arbroath High Street while plans are put in place to expand Westway retail park.
Now there is a proposal to develop Montrose aerodrome. We will kill our centres if we don’t take care.