Religion: A Subject Like Others?
Religious Education has long been central to the Irish school curriculum reflecting the largely religious nature of Irish society where the population was preponderantly Catholic. Schools at primary and secondary levels were closely intertwined mainly with the Catholic Church. Progressively this changed as the population became more ethnically and religiously diverse. Largely because of this, the Education department introduced Religious Education as examinable like other subjects in the curriculum in 2003 for junior and 2005 for senior levels. As examinable, it remains optional, multi-denominational and interfaith. This development in the study of religion as an examinable subject in the Irish curriculum has been seen to be significant. After fifteen or so years, it would seem to be worthwhile to review it.