FREEDOM OF CHOICE. IT IS YOUR RIGHT NOT TO AVAIL YOURSELF OF THE CATHOLIC RELIGIOUS TEACHING (CRT)

A Guide to an aware choice of the catholic religious teaching (CRT) in public schools

 

It is  right to remind that the CRT is  a confessional catholic teaching, as teachers are selected by bishops, with educational qualifications obtained in institutes authorized by the Santa Sede  and with syllabuses worked out by the Conferenza episcopale italiana(CEI).

This means a benefit to a religious confession,  even if  followed by the majority of people in Italy, often with the presence of evident catholic symbols in the Italian school that should

be  secular and public. For all these reasons we think  it useful that both parents and students/ school children should be correctly informed in order to  be able to choose in a conscious way as

 

IT IS YOUR  RIGHT NOT TO AVAIL YOURSELF

 

As a matter of fact, according  to the Italian legislation, students can avail or not avail themselves of the CRT.

      

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TO AVAIL OR NOT TO AVAIL YOURSELF OF THE CRT IS A THOUGHTFUL CHOICE TO MAKE COHERENTLY TO THE EDUCATIONAL PLAN, PROPOSED BY PARENTS, REGARDING CHILDREN’S RELIGIOUS FORMATION.

 

It is important to  know that:

1.     The CRT is not compulsory.

2.     The hours per week are respectively: 1,5 in the  nursery school,  2 hours in the primary  school, 1 in the secondary school of first and second level.

3.     Students-schoolchildren who avail themselves of the CRT  have a compulsory attendance.

4.     Students-schoolchildren who don’t avail themselves of the CRT don’t have a compulsory attendance.

5.     The school must provide forms to draw up in conformity  to the ones alleged to the ministerial decree: Mod. D,  Mod. E.

 

Students/schoolchildren who don’t avail themselves must choose among the following activities:

-          Educational-formative activities: that is an alternative school-subiect selected by parents or by students of the secondary school.

-          Assisted individual study: students / schoolchildren often move to other classes.

-          Free individual study: students/ schoolchildren don’t usually do any school-activity and are simply surveilled by the teaching staff.

-          Going out of school: with an application to the headmaster (by students, if of age, by parents for schoolchildren).

The ministerial decree 368/85 provides, even in cases of registration ex officio, the right to choose every school-year whether to avail or not to avail yourself and  specifies that the  headmaster must provide the prescribed form to the people who have this right.

 

 

ILLEGITIMATE  BEHAVIOURS

 

EXAMPLES:

-          Schools generally tend not to encourage alternative activities because of difficulties in  managing teaching timetables and lack of funding.

-          They provide forms not corresponding to the ministerial ones.

-          They often try to convince parents to change their choice after a school-year.

-          They don’t allow students/schoolchildren to go out of school  during the CRT lessons.(in particular in the nursery and primary schools).

-          They perform confessional/lithurgical activities inside schools (such as pastoral visits, pilgrimages, blessings).

-          They  write the evaluation in CRT in the report-cards.

 

 

OPEN PROBLEMS

Fioroni ministerial decree n. 26 / 03-15-2007, repeated in 2008 assigns the students who avail themselves of the CRT some formative/educational credits to be admitted to the school-leaving examination.

But according to the section  8, paragraph 13 , even teachers of educational/alternative activities can assign the same credits. In recent times they made an appeal to the Tribunale Amministrativo Regionale (TAR) against this decree and many of the problems are still unsolved with a real risk of discrimination in the students’ evaluation.