Religions, Vol. 14, Pages 685: Institutionalizing the Relationship between Religious Teaching and Religious Freedom: The Case of the Republic of San Marino

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Religions, Vol. 14, Pages 685: Institutionalizing the Relationship between Religious Teaching and Religious Freedom: The Case of the Republic of San Marino

Religions doi: 10.3390/rel14060685

Authors:
Andrea Porcarelli

This paper examines the principles of denominational religious teaching in public schools at the background of a broader debate, concerning its compatibility with the standards of freedom of/from religion, by assessing the case of the Republic of San Marino. In doing so, revisions were made to some of the solutions proposed within the framework of international documents, such as the Toledo Guiding Principles on Teaching about Religions and Beliefs in Public Schools (OSCE/ODIHR). Among the various solutions, the Toledo document proposes the preparation of an alternative lesson of equal dignity, for those pupils who do not avail themselves of denominational education. The preparation of an alternative lesson is to be followed by a detailed analysis of the regulatory procedure that led to the achievement of this solution in the Republic of San Marino; the procedure entailed setting up a course on “Ethics, culture and society” in public schools for those who do not wish to avail themselves of Catholic religious education. These types of lessons were introduced, experimentally, in the academic year of 2019–2020 and the monitoring of the experiment is currently in progress. Shown, in conclusion, will be how this educational experiment could be a good practice for institutionalizing religious freedom in a small country, in which denominational religious teaching is mandatory.

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