Why choose Christian SRE?

Fulfilling the aims of the Declaration on Educational Goals for Young Australians (Melbourne 2008), Christian SRE helps students to ‘become successful learners, confident and creative individuals, and active and informed citizens’. It aids them to ‘have a sense of self- worth and personal identity that enables them to manage their emotional, mental, spiritual and physical wellbeing’.

“Special Religious Education is a vibrant and vital part of a holistic approach to education which recognises the importance of the spiritual wellbeing of children. Through SRE students can develop a sense of meaning and purpose enabling them to grow in their ability to connect with culture, religion and community.” Anglican Archbishop of Sydney, Dr Glenn Davies

The NSW Government published the independent SRE review findings and recommendations in 2017. These highlighted how SRE positively contributes to students’ understanding of their cultural heritage, is an avenue for their spiritual care, builds tolerance in schools, promotes multiculturalism, contributes to a well-rounded education, and connects schools with their local community.

What is
Christian SRE?

Special Religious Education (SRE) is the time set aside
in Public Schools where parents/carers can choose to
have their children educated in the faith of their family
and cultural background. The NSW Education Act (1990)
allows for the local community to make this contribution
to public education, via annually approved providers
responsible for developing age appropriate lessons,
training and authorisation of teachers..

Christian SRE begins with the understanding that we
were created by a loving God, who calls us to fullness
of life. Children are encouraged to see themselves as
God sees them, full of gifts and potential to be a force
for immense goodness in our world. As such, Christian
SRE contributes to positive self-image, identity and
resilience, forming young people in their understanding
of the morals and values from the teaching of Jesus.

The Christian SRE programme takes various forms in
different schools and regions. In major cities individual
denominations often provide specific class options for
schools (e.g. Catholic, Orthodox, Protestant). In some
smaller regions, churches often unite their efforts to
deliver a common curriculum, in combined Christian
SRE classes.

Who teaches SRE?

SRE teachers are people from local Christian
churches, both paid and volunteer. All SRE teachers
have mandatory working with children checks, as well
as ongoing training in child protection and classroom
management, lesson preparation and the appropriate
use of authorised curriculum materials.

What is taught?

Christian SRE teachers follow an authorised
curriculum enabling students to question, explore and
discover more about their Christian faith by examining
the Word of God, church teaching and the faith
experience of others. It helps students to grasp what it
means to live well, to be in relationship with God and
to embrace a life of service of others.

SRE teachers are encouraged to use a variety of
teaching activities including writing, craft, small
groups, class discussion, songs, drama, storytelling,
games and new learning technologies. Every SRE
provider must have on their website a link to the
outline of the authorised curriculum they use.

How do we
choose SRE?

When completing the school enrolment form, a
parent/carer nominates their choice in the Religion
section e.g. Catholic, Greek Orthodox or Combined
Christian. Schools should regularly inform parents of
SRE options locally, but if a parent/carer is unsure or
wants an update, they can simply contact the school.
A parent/carer can alter their choice at any time by
sending a note to the school principal. SRE providers
fully support the right of parents/carers to choose
non-SRE options, including supervised study, and
Special Education in Ethics classes where available.


On occasion SRE teachers may send information
home about local church services, annual seasonal
celebrations or access to sacramental or church
programs, as part of ongoing communication with
parents/carers of students in SRE. There are clear
processes available at a school level and via SRE
providers to enable parents/carers to have dialogue,
to ask questions or to make a complaint if they have
concerns about SRE.

Need more info?

Most major Christian providers are part of the Inter-
Church Commission on Religious Education in Schools
(ICCOREIS) who has produced this resource on behalf of its members. Contact info@christiansre.com.au for more information.

The Inter-Church Commission on
Religious Education in Schools
(ICCOREIS) represents the following
Christian churches:

Australian Christian Churches in NSW, Baptist Union of NSW,
C3 Church, Christian Community Churches of Australia, Dioceses
of the Anglican Church of Australia in the Province of NSW, Catholic
Dioceses in NSW, Fellowship of Congregational Churches, Fresh
Hope (Churches of Christ in NSW), Greek Orthodox Archdiocese of
Australia, Lutheran Church of Australia NSW District, Presbyterian
Church of Australia in the State of NSW, The Salvation Army,
Serbian Orthodox Church in Australia and New Zealand – NSW and
ACT Deaneries, Seventh-day Adventist Church, NSW Conferences,
Uniting Church in Australia NSW/ACT Synod.

ICCOREIS is a member of All Faiths SRE NSW (AFSRE) which
includes Baha’i, Buddhist, Christian, Hindu, Islamic, Jewish and
Sikh representatives.

Better Balanced Futures provides the
foundation for life values in our children, to
assist them to navigate in an ever-changing
world. It aims to continually improve the
implementation and delivery of SRE.

Contact us