BHA launches Government petition: Abolish compulsory collective worship

26 August, 2011

Take Action! You can sign the petition on the e-petitions website!

A new petition has been launched on the Government’s recently established e-petitions website calling for the law forcing all schools to hold a ‘broadly Christian’ daily assembly to be repealed.

The text of the petition reads:

As it stands, the law requires all schools to hold an act of collective worship every day. Even in schools that aren’t ‘faith’ schools, this must be ‘broadly Christian’ in character. In a society which is increasingly diverse, this is an affront to the rights of young people to express their beliefs freely. Although there is the opportunity to opt out, this is reliant on parental permission and is not respected by all schools. The law is extremely unpopular, with opinion polls showing teachers don’t want it, parents don’t want it, and children don’t want it. As such, it is long past time for the daily act of collective worship to be replaced with inclusive assemblies that add to cohesion and a sense of community within the school. We petition the Government to repeal the requirement for compulsory collective worship in schools and to encourage schools to hold educational assemblies that will include all children, regardless of religion or non-religious belief.

Earlier this year we asked our members to contact us with their views on the collective worship law. From parents, pupils and teachers alike we found overwhelming dissatisfaction with the law. This is a chance for these grievances to be properly debated and hopefully for the law finally to be changed.


For further comment or information, please contact Richy Thompson on 020 7462 4993.

Read the e-petition, Abolish collective worship

Read more about the BHA’s campaigns work on worship in schools.

The British Humanist Association is the national charity working on behalf of ethically concerned, non-religious people in the UK. It is the largest organisation in the UK campaigning for an end to religious privilege and to discrimination based on religion or belief, and for a secular state.