Agenda and draft minutes

Standing Advisory Council on Religious Education (SACRE)
Wednesday, 11th March, 2020 5.15 pm

Venue: Baitul Hafeez Mosque, 308 Sneinton Dale, Nottingham NG3 7DN

Contact: Catherine Ziane-Pryor  Email:

No. Item


Apologies for absence


Krishna Dasi

John Heard

Debs Hunt

Councillor Angela Kandola

Yasmin Khalique

Kirsty Lacey

Caroline Mackeith

Norman Randall (Lauren Knifton attending as a substitute)

Alison Rowe

Caroline White


Minutes and Notes of Meetings (for confirmation) pdf icon PDF 320 KB

Additional documents:


Due to a quorum of required members from each group not being achieved since June 2018 until this meeting, the minutes of notes of meetings since had not been formally approved or agreed.


With regard to the 27/11/19:


o  Meeting note f(2), and the ongoing issues around achieving the required quorum, Heidi Shewell-Cooper has already contacted all members and asked if they are able to nominate an alternative member or reconsider their commitment. A further email will be sent to those who did not attend or submit apologies and this will be followed up by a phone call;


o  Meeting note m, Primary Schools were encouraged to join NATRE and several more have since done so.




1)  to approve the following minutes and agree the following meeting notes:


27 November 2019;

13 June 2019;

22 November 2018;

14 June 2018;


2)  for Lead Officer Heidi Shewell-Cooper to confirm as completed at the next meeting,  the following actions form the above minutes and notes:


a)  27/11/19 meeting note f(2). To follow up on confirming if SACRE members wish to continue in their role, nominate a substitute, or relinquish their representation, including pursuing the offer of Councillor Kandola to find a replacement Sikh representative as the current representative no longer has capacity;


b)  27/11/19 meeting, note k(2). Confirmation to be requested from John Dexter that he has queried with Ofsted, on behalf of the Chair, how schools which do not comply to the statutory requirement of providing religious education, can be graded as outstanding;


c)  14/06/18 meeting, minute 7, Actions (i) and (ii). Confirmation: that


  (i)  whether Debs Hunt’s offer to support website development with guidance for places of workshop regarding welcoming school visits was accepted and provided;


  (ii)  whetherRobina Din’s offer to link with the inter-faith council re developing the resource for schools in accessing Places of Worship was accepted and provided.



Welcome from our host, Dr Irfan Malik to Baitul Hafeez Mosque, Nottingham


Dr Ifran Malik, welcomed those in attendance to the Baitul Hafeez Mosque for Ahmadiyya Muslims.


The mosque was previously St Bernadette’s School but has been converted and now hosts approximately 180 Ahmadiyya Muslims from across the City and County.


The mosque is keen to engage, interact with and build bridges to reduce fear and Islamophobia within the community and it therefore holds regular ‘visit mosque days’ to encourage understanding, and extends  community invitations to attend the Iftar Dinner, which is the evening meal with which Muslims end their daily Ramadan fast at sunset.


The mosque holds regular charity events, most recently a walk for peace, and helps supply local charities which support local people, including the Salvation Army food bank collective and the annual British Legion Poppy appeal, has signed the Armed Forces covenant and takes part in the remembrance Sunday service. Mosque outreach team members also visit schools to talk children and take part in local litter picks. They also welcome school visits from across Nottinghamshire on a regular basis and these have been advertised to City schools


Resolved to thank Dr Malik for his hospitality and welcome.



Constitution for Approval pdf icon PDF 27 KB

Report of the Chair

Additional documents:


Lead Officer, Heidi Shewell-Cooper, presented the report which, following Quoracy issues, requests that the number of representatives required per group for the purposes of quoracy be reduced to one member per required group. The report also requests that Group A membership (Christian and other religious faiths), is expanded to include the Ahmadiyya Muslim Association, increasing the membership of Group A to 14 representatives.


Resolved to approve the constitution as attached to the report, with the following amendments:


1)  that for SACRE meetings to be corporate, at least one member per required group must be in attendance;


2)  for the Ahmadiyya Muslim Association to be included within the Group A membership.



Membership Update

Verbal Update by Heidi Shewell-Cooper


Heidi Shewell-Cooper, provided a brief update on membership, in that:


  • Sarah Peek (Specialist Leader in Religious Education, Sneinton Primary School) has accepted the invitation to represent teachers within Group C;


  • Norman Randall has accepted the invitation to represent the Jewish faith, within Group A;


  • Dr Ifran Malik has accepted an invitation to represent the Ahmadiyya Muslim Association within Group A.



Appointment of Vice-Chair (from Group B)


Further to the discussion at the last meeting, it was agreed that with Bishop James Stapleton (Group A representative) having operated as Vice Chair for the past two years, a member from Group B (Church of England Representatives) should be considered for appointment as Vice-Chair. Heidi Shewell-Cooper had contacted members of Group B to invite expressions of interest for the role of Vice-Chair.


Resolved for Jane Lewis to be appointed Vice-Chair for this and the next year.



Relationships and Sex Education Engagement Group Update

Verbal update by Chair of the Relationships and Sex Education Engagement Group


Councillor David Mellen, Chair of the Relationships and Sex Education Engagement Group, provided the following brief update on the group’s work, with contributions from Councillor Neghat Khan:


a)  The group was established in response to community concerns following Central Government changes to the PHSE curriculum with revised statutory expectations for relationship and sex education. The group aims to enable schools and community faith partners to work in partnership to support understanding in delivering the required curriculum;


b)  The group has met twice and is open to SACRE members and other community religious leaders. SACRE members have been supportive in their attendance


c)  SACRE endorses the current work of the RSE Group which is producing a document written by faith leaders to help teachers understand the various faith perspectives related to aspects of the RSE curriculum. This will help teachers have a faith perspective as they plan for their pupils’ learning.


d)  Councillor Neghat Khan has met with different faith groups, including groups of women, to discuss their concerns. One of the main issues is that some people do not feel that they have been consulted. There is an expectation that all schools will communicate with their parent body, for some schools this will take place after the Easter holidays.


Resolved for the Lead Officer, Heidi Shewell-Cooper, to feedback Cllr Neghat Khan’s views regarding parent consultation to LA staff involved in the RSE Group.


National Association Standing Council Advisory Council on Religious Education (NASACRE)

To note that SACRE members may access information via the following link:


Resolved to note that SACRE members may access information from the National Association Standing Advisory Council on Religious Education (NASACRE) via the following link



Determinations pdf icon PDF 108 KB

Additional documents:


Heidi Shewell-Cooper, Lead Officer, presented the report which outlines that whilst collective worship within the broad traditions of Christian belief is required by law for all pupils, any determination of any variance is required. For community schools, this is within the remit of SACRE, but academies must apply to DfE academies division EFS for a determination.


Very few, if any, determination applications been received by Nottingham SACRE but it is proposed that the process is communicated to both community schools and academies.


Resolved for the Lead Officer to communicate the determination requirement and process to all community and Academy schools within the City.



Future Meeting Date

To provisionally agree that the SACRE next meet on 11 November 2020 at 4.30pm at a venue to be confirmed.




Resolved to provisionally agree that SACRE next meet on 11 November 2020 at 4:30 pm at the Fig Tree Primary School in Hyson Green.



Key Messages and Items of Interest

The opportunity for members of SACRE to inform or update the Council on related matters or points of concern.


None at this time.


The Agreed Syllabus Conference; Consideration for approval pdf icon PDF 388 KB

Report of the Chair of the Agreed Syllabus Conference


Heidi Shewell-Cooper, Lead Officer, presented the covering report, which sets out the background and statutory requirement to convene an Agreed Syllabus Conference (ASC) to determine a draft religious education syllabus for the period 2022-2025.


Members of the City ASC have worked in partnership with County ASC colleagues to develop the draft syllabus.


The draft syllabus itself has been exempted from publication due to the potential commercial opportunity of offering access to the syllabus for academies and non-community schools, but all members of SACRE have been provided with access to it.


The City ASC is presenting the draft syllabus to the City SACRE for approval, subject to the following, which are supported by the City SACRE:


·  changes to some terminology;

·  clarification with the County SACRE on copyright;

·  determination of the launch date and possible event;

·  further discussions with County SACRE with regard to:

o  whether hard copy publication is required, and if so identify an appropriate cost;

o  the secure mechanism for electronic access to the syllabus by City and County community schools, community schools from outside of the County, and Academies wishing to purchase the resource;

o  the level of charges levied to academies (and non-City/County community schools) for access to the syllabus (the formulation of which has been paid for by the City and County SACREs).




1)  subject to final proof-reading and checking that terminology regarding the Jewish faith is consistent, to accept the ASC proposal to adopt; Religious Education for All 2020-2025, and therefore to recommend this Syllabus for use to Nottingham City Council;


2)  prior to its release and publication, to determine with the County SACRE, with agreement of the Chair and Vice-Chair:


a)  copyright;


b)  hardcopy publication and related additional costs which are to be passed on to users;


c)  secure mechanisms for electronic access to the syllabus;


d)  the level of charges levied to establishments which are not community schools within the City or County, for access to the syllabus.