This study begins by distinguishing between three kinds of ‘faith schools’ (known as schools with a religious character) within England and Wales: faith schools that operate within the state-maintained sector and had their origin in voluntary church-related initiatives prior to the Education Act 1870; ‘traditional’ independent faith schools, many of which had their roots in or before the nineteenth century; and ‘new’ independent faith schools, particularly Christian and Muslim schools, following the Rochester initiative in 1969. Second, this study draws attention to and summarises a quantitative research tradition established in 1982 concerned with identifying the attitudes and values of teachers working specifically within Anglican faith schools within the state-maintained sector, and with modelling the influence of personal and religious factors in shaping their attitudes. Third, this study reanalyses a new database profiling the views of subject leaders in religious education across a broad range of primary schools with a religious character in England. These new analyses demonstrate the different priorities given to different aims of religious education by teachers in this sector, and illustrates the relative influence of personal factors (age, sex and church attendance), professional factors (years teaching, qualifications, and continuing professional development) and contextual factors (type of school)
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