Leicestershire SACRE (Standing Advisory Council for Religious Education)

Every LA is required by law to have a SACRE. The SACRE meets three times a year and sends a report to the QCDA every year.

About Leicestershire SACRE

The SACRE sends a report to the Department of Education (DfE) every year. The SACRE meets three times a year, meetings take place on Microsoft Teams and will return to County Hall in the future. The Chair is Amanda McKenzie. Leicestershire SACRE have their own dedicated website.

Legal requirements

Every local authority (LA) is required by law to have a SACRE. The origins of SACREs go back to the Education Act 1944, but the Education Reform Act 1988 and the Education Act 1996 strengthened the place of the SACRE in LAs.

The function of a SACRE is to support and advise the LA upon matters connected with collective worship in community schools and in foundation schools which do not have a religious character, and the religious education to be given in accordance with an agreed syllabus.

Contribution to community cohesion

The promotion of Community Cohesion lies at the heart of the Agreed Syllabus through explicit specification content and potential learning opportunities.

Syllabus content

The Syllabus is designed to develop pupils’ awareness of the religious diversity that surrounds them, recognising and appreciating different religions, beliefs, ethnicities and socio-economic backgrounds. Students are required to explore questions about the ultimate meaning and purpose of life, beliefs about God and self and consider issues such as justice, human rights, belonging, identity, interfaith dialogue and discrimination locally, nationally and globally.

The Agreed Syllabus sets out what should be taught to students and the standards expected at each Key Stage. There is a requirement to study different traditions enabling pupils to acknowledge the diversity of opinion and practices and to understand others.

If you are a school in Leicestershire that needs full access to the PDF of the syllabus, contact the Diocese of Leicester Board of Education   

If your school is outside Leicestershire and you would like to use the syllabus the price is £55 for the licence.  

Please note this is an electronic syllabus only.

Learning opportunities

The syllabus content requires students to develop skills of participation and to make informed evaluations concerning contemporary issues both nationally and globally.

Learning will be naturally enriched through fieldwork, visits to different places of worship and interaction with members of different beliefs and communities.Opens new window


What do I do if a parent is unhappy about RE Teaching in the school?

The parent should discuss this with the Headteacher of the School.

How can a parent make an official complaint about RE in their child’s school?

The parent should go through Section 409 of the Education Act 1996 schools complaints procedure by following the school complaints policy.

What if I disagree with the Leicestershire Agreed Syllabus for RE?

You should write to the Clerk to the SACRE under Section 409 of the Education Act 1996 schools complaints procedure (address on homepage).

How can a parent find out more about RE in their child’s school?

Schools should provide information for parents on RE, this could be via their website. Parents can request further information from the school.

Can a parent withdraw their child from RE and collective worship?

RE is for all pupils and every pupil is legally entitled to Religious Education as part of a ‘broad and balanced’ curriculum. Parents have the right to withdraw their children from RE on the grounds that they wish to provide their own RE. Their request should be in writing to the Headteacher of the school and should make clear to them whether it is from all the subject or just part. The school has to make it clear what the educational objectives and the content of R.E. are so parents can make an informed choice. Where a parent withdraws their child, the school has a duty to supervise them – but not to provide additional teaching or incur cost. 

How can I improve the 'spiritual dimension' of the curriculum for learners?

  • When considering the curriculum and particular aspects of teaching and lessons, plan opportunities to improve the spiritual dimension for pupils:
  • Take into account pupils’ beliefs, religious or otherwise, which inform their perspective on life and their interest in and respect for different people’s feelings and values.
  • Help pupils to understand a sense of enjoyment and fascination in learning about themselves, others and the world around them, including the intangible.
  • Support pupils in their use of imagination and creativity in their learning.
  • Help pupils to reflect on their experiences.

How can I prepare fully for an Ofsted inspection?

  • Refer to the Ofsted website - look at forms and guidance, schools, inspection documents. Also, in the search box, it is possible to refine a search.
  • Consider the advice in the DfE publication Religious Education in English Schools: non-statutory guidance 2010 - available at Gov.uk
  • Ensure that the appropriate Statutory Agreed Syllabus is being followed.
  • You may be the subject of a single subject inspection. Should this be the case ensure that you are in a position to make judgements, with evidence, regarding achievement, the quality of teaching and learning, the curriculum and leadership and management of the subject.
  • Consider links across the curriculum, for example in English, music, drama or art. Is it possible to be flexible and creative in the way that RE is taught?

How can I join a SACRE meeting?

SACRE meetings are open to the public. Meetings take place on Microsoft Teams and will return to County Hall in the future. Please email us if you would like to join the next meeting.