More hours of religious education in some schools

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Renegade regions find way to boost religion in school.

7 January 2008

MADRID - One of the Catholic Church's main gripes with the Socialist government is the changes it has made to the education system, cutting the hours available for religious education in public schools by 35 per year. But since the education reform went into effect in 2006, several regions have actually increased rather than decreased the amount of religion children are taught.

According to a study by the FETE-UGT teachers' union, the Basque Country, Navarre and five other regions governed by the main opposition Popular Party have increased the number of hours of religious education by using clauses that allow regional governments to set up to 45 percent of the curriculum. "Although the number of hours isn't everything, it does clearly indicate the priorities of each regional government," says Antonio Bolívar, an education expert at the University of Granada.

[Copyright El Pais / J. A. AUNIÓN 2008]

Subject: Spanish news

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