The Romanian Orthodox Church and the other religious denominations in Romania want students who finish high school to be able to choose Religion as a Baccalaureate subject. BOR also requites that phrases like “sexual orientation” do not appear in the school curriculum.
First of all, religious cults in Romania asked that Religion can be chosen as an exam subject at the Baccalaureate, just like other subjects in the common core. 13 representatives of the religious cults recognized by the Romanian state sent an address to the Ministry of Education in which they make this request.
According to the representatives of the churches, Religion should not be discriminated as a school subject, in relation to the other subjects that can be chosen for the Baccalaureate exam. “The non-discrimination of Religion in relation to other school subjects from the common core, by including it in the list of school subjects, of choice, in the national Baccalaureate exam so that students who attend religion classes have the opportunity to capitalize and verify their acquired skills in this discipline, one of the few that is studied throughout pre-university education and the only one that has been validated by the overwhelming majority of parents“, the joint address states.
The cults also demanded that the phrase “sexual orientation” be deleted from the Education law. The obligation to promote “sexual diversity” in school is “totally abusive and harmful”, and “gender ideology” – which describes as normality a psycho-somatic deviation called “transgenderism” – represents an “artificial ideational construction”, in return for reality and with the order of nature structured by the two sexes: masculine and feminine, according to the stance conveyed by the Romanian Patriarchate.
The Education draft law on pre-university education lists “identity diversity” among the assumed values and prohibits discrimination based on sexual orientation.
The president of the National Council for Combating Discrimination, Csaba Asztalos stated though that these requests of the Patriarchate and religious cults are not at all timely and that it would be “a big problem” if there was no more diversity in schools. At the same time, says the head of the CNCD, religious cults are “irritated by the simple presence of people with a sexual orientation other than straight”.
“There are confusions in approaches. Gender equality talks about the equality of women and men, and here I don’t see who would have anything to protest or criticize and why we should exclude gender equality from the Education Laws. Gender equality is a constitutional principle and underlies the organization of any democratic society. Gender equality has nothing to do with sexual minorities, so I don’t understand this criticism made by religious cults. Dialogue is needed, but with or without the inclusion of these notions, the Education Act must respect these principles.
Some think that gender equality also refers to transgender people and gender reassignment, which is a completely different topic and has nothing to do with equality between women and men.
Removing the notion of diversity from the law is not appropriate nor welcome because diversity is a very broad concept, we can also talk about religious diversity, and in education if we don’t have this diversity, then we have a big problem.
I notice that so-called organizations and even cults focus exclusively on the rights of sexual minorities, and any notion that would indirectly promote their rights produces irritation and a reaction to erase everything that expresses the area of human rights and non-discrimination. Hence these demands to eliminate diversity or qualify the so-called gender ideology. There are misleading elements.
The simple existence of some people, of some people with a sexual orientation other than hetero, generates irritation among some of the representatives of the cults. They interpret that the mere existence of these people and assuming their identity in public space, even in a school, would create a form of discrimination for those who are heterosexual.
It is an interpretation that we cannot accept in a democracy. Everyone has the right to assume their identity, and the school must raise children with a critical spirit, able to distinguish between correct and false information, and from this point of view, we also need the values of religion,” said the CNCD Head.
The National Council of Students: Religion as a Baccalaureate test would not bring a real benefit
The President of the National Council of Students, Miruna Croitoru, said on Thursday that the option to choose Religion as a test at the Baccalaureate “would not bring a real benefit to the students” because the subject is not a unitary one, considering the multitude of religious beliefs, and beliefs are difficult to evaluate by grades.
“The possibility of choosing religion as a test at the Baccalaureate would not bring a real benefit to the students, precisely because it does not represent a unitary aspect, taking into account the multitude of religious beliefs that should not be tested and evaluated in this formula. Or we can evaluate the beliefs and the values by marks from 1 to 10?”, the president of the National Council of Students sent in a press release.
Miruna Croitoru also criticized the request of the 13 representatives of religious cults in Romania who want “diversity” to no longer be defined in the draft education law, and teachers not to be obliged to promote it. They also requested that the phrase “sexual orientation” be deleted from the document.
“It is alarming that the idea of not respecting two of the basic principles of society – diversity and inclusion – is even discussed. When we refer to encouraging school participation, we automatically refer to the way in which the teaching staff ensures an atmosphere friendly in the classroom, based on acceptance, communication and understanding”, declared the president of the National Council of Students.