The government’s proposals for a school reform include a proposal to rename the subject Christianity to Religion, although the content of classes will remain the same, according to Kristeligt Dagblad.
“We find ‘religion’ covers the syllabus content better and is more modern. Christianity will still be central to content because we live in a country in which Christianity has been our cultural fulcrum for centuries,” Social Democratic Education Spokesman Troels Ravn tells Kristeligt Dagblad.
“But at the same time we have to modernise the subject because we now have a society in which other religions play a role,” he adds.
Ravn says that the name change is not a main issue in the reform, but will be part of the negotiating process that follows the publication of the government’s reform proposals.
The current government parties have previously suggested a name-change for the subject, with Education Minister Christine Antorini (SocDem) telling Kristeligt Dagblad a year ago that “it is important that the subject is called Religion”.
Centre-right education spokesmen are surprised at the proposal, with Conservative Spokeswoman Mai Henriksen saying she is sceptical.
“It is important for us to keep the original name. It is important because it signals what the subject is about and because it affects the way it is taught,” Henriksen tells Kristeligt Dagblad.
The Danish People’s Party is even more adamant.
“Denmark is a Christian country; Christianity is the foundation of our society and must therefore be weighted most… A name change will send the wrong signal and put all religions on the same footing,” says Alex Ahrendtsen.
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Edited by Julian Isherwood