Mom and dad playing with kid on the grass.
Mom and dad playing with kid on the grass

If the Australian Law Reform Commission (ALRC) gets its way, Christian schooling as we know it will cease to exist in Australia.

The ALRC published its long-awaited report on religious education late last month, and the Albanese Labor Government tabled it in Parliament shortly after.

According to the report, Christian schools and other faith-based institutions should be forced to hire staff that don’t share their beliefs.

Australian Christians condemns the ALRC report in the strongest possible terms and we urge the government to ignore its recommendations.

The report recommends completely abolishing section 38 of the Sex Discrimination Act, removing any right for faith-based schools to require staff to follow the “doctrines, tenets, beliefs or teachings of a particular religion or creed.”

Instead, religious education institutions would be compelled by law to privilege the “sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, marital or relationship status or pregnancy” of any staff member, current or prospective, over accountability to the school’s faith commitments.

The ALRC has claimed that the only protection needed by Christian schools is the ability “to build a community of faith by giving preference to the employment of staff of the same religion,” which, they suggest, could be provided via an amendment to the Fair Work Act and a future Religious Discrimination Act.

However, this very narrow provision would still force Christian schools to hire LGBT staff who justify their lifestyle with appeals to Christianity.

In any case, when can Australians hope to see a Religious Discrimination Act? The Liberals, under Pentecostal Prime Minister Scott Morrison, ultimately shelved their proposed Religious Discrimination Bill after years of stalling.

In reply, Prime Minister Anthony Albanese, a professing Catholic, recently told his Labor caucus that he plans to hold back on fulfilling his election promise to reform religious discrimination laws unless they have guaranteed Coalition support.

In turn, Liberal senator Simon Birmingham said the Coalition will not guarantee support without first seeing legislation.

Pray tell, who in Canberra is willing to stand up for Aussies of faith?

The majority of Australians are religious, yet strident secularism has a stranglehold on our nation’s leaders. After failing Christians and other religious Australians, our major parties are about to betray religious schools too. The most bizarre aspect of this betrayal is that Christian schools provide education for close to a third of all Australian schoolchildren, a much higher

percentage than comparable Western nations.

The heads of Australia’s Christian school groups are up in arms about the ALRC report, and rightly so.

In a media release, the leaders of Christian Schools Australia (CSA), Australian Association of Christian Schools (AACS) and Associated Christian Schools (ACS) called the report “a direct attack on faith and freedom of belief in Australia”.

CSA Director of Public Policy Mark Spencer explained that “hundreds of thousands of Australian parents choose to send their children to faith-based schools because they value this type of education”.

“They enrol their children knowing that our teachers and staff are aligned with our beliefs and that students will be taught according to our beliefs,” he added. “If these recommendations are adopted, parents would lose this right.”

Mr Spencer said that “a staff member who doesn’t share and support our beliefs cannot effectively teach our beliefs or support students according to our beliefs”.

AACS Executive Officer Vanessa Cheng likewise called the report “a line in the sand moment not just for Christian schools, but for all people of faith and for the principle of religious freedom across Australia”.

According to ACS Executive Director Alistair Macpherson, “International law and covenants, which Australia has ratified, recognise the importance of religious groups to be able to teach and practice their beliefs, and for parents to be able to choose schooling for children that aligns with their personal beliefs.”

“It is time for government to recognise and support this fundamental human right, rather than facilitating this continued victimisation of religious groups and individuals,” he explained.

He asked, “Why should faith-based organisations be singled out?”

“We are not asking anyone to share our faith or worldview, just to respect our faith and support the freedom of belief.”

Australian Christians stands with our nation’s Christian schools. We are convinced that the ALRC’s report is deeply flawed and that its recommendations pose a threat — not just to Christians, and not just to all religious Australians, but to the entire nation.

Christians have always been easy targets for secular attacks on freedom. This situation is no different.

We likewise put on record our deep disappointment with both major parties, who have failed the nation time and time again. The Liberals, once a strong ally of Christian schools, have shown that they are no longer up to the task of defending Australia’s religious institutions.

Australians concerned about the future of Christian schools should no longer lend their vote to parties that make big promises at election time but keep failing to deliver.

The only solution is to vote 1 Australian Christians at next year’s election. Stand with us as we stand up for Christian schools.

Mother and child


Take a stand against the inhumane treatment of babies and children. 

Thank you for becoming part of the solution.

Share This

Share This

Share this post with your friends!