Indonesia Envisions More Religion in Schools

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Annisa Nurul Jannah, 11, was learning about how devices transmit heat, sound and electricity. “I like science because it teaches me a lot,” the sixth grader at Petamburan 04, a school in a working-class part of Jakarta, said about her favorite subject. “I’d be sad if it was removed from school.”


Millions of children in Indonesian elementary schools may no longer have separate science classes starting in June, the beginning of their next school year, if the government approves a curriculum overhaul that would merge science and social studies with other classes so more time can be devoted to religious education.

A draft of the proposal was posted online in November and December for public comment. The government is analyzing the feedback and will meet with a team of experts shortly to develop new lesson plans.

Ibnu Hamid, an Education Ministry spokesman, said feedback showed that people generally agreed with the curriculum changes but were worried that there would not be enough time to train teachers and prepare new books. The comments have not been released to the public, however, and some critics question whether they truly reflect broader opinion.

Officials who back the changes say that more religious instruction is needed because a lack of moral development has led to an increase in violence and vandalism among youths, and that could fuel social unrest and corruption in the future.

“Right now many students don’t have character, tolerance for others, empathy for others,” Musliar Kasim, the deputy minister of education, said in an interview in November. He proposed the changes in September.

Written By: Sara Schonhardt
continue to source article at nytimes.com

10 COMMENTS

  1. “Right now many students don’t have character, tolerance for others, empathy for others,”

    The last thing they need is special lessons to remove those characteristics from the few that have them already.

    Religion breeds closed mindedness and intolerance, not the attributes he wants to encourage

  2. “Right now many students don’t have character, tolerance for others, empathy for others,”

    Well, that’s because they haven’t lived that long. Most of them probably haven’t figured out themselves yet, let alone have a complete understanding of the human condition. They’re called students for a reason. Just give ‘em minute to compose themselves, for crying out loud.

  3. “Right now many students don’t have character, tolerance for others, empathy for others,”

    And islam is the best way to eradicate it from the minority that do. Down with rationalism, logic and reasoning and ethics that’s no good! We must Introduce them to the ways of the loving god who so loved the world he filled it with unimaginable horrors beyond our worst nightmares and who leads us in victory to kill all these infidels who don’t think we have tolerance and empathy.

    Just marvellous, fekin marvellous. And they are worried about training teachers and writing new books!! NEW BOOKS?? What about the perfect religion guide courtesy of Zahid Ibn Thabbit and Mo?

  4. Indonesia may have a good point… “more religious instruction is needed because a lack of moral development has led to an increase in violence and vandalism”

    Mike Huckabee linked Newtown shooting to lack of religion in schools… “Well, you know, it’s an interesting thing. When we ask why there is violence in our schools, but we’ve systematically removed God from our schools. Should we be so surprised that schools have become a place for carnage because we’ve made it a place where we don’t want to talk about eternity, life, what responsibility means, accountability?”

  5. “Right now many students don’t have character, tolerance for others, empathy for others,” Musliar Kasim, the deputy minister of education, said in an interview in November.

    Religion plays one of its strongest cards. It could be summed up as “The youth of today … blah, blah, blah”.

    Generation after generation we hear the same tosh. Can’t people remember when they were kids and their parents/grandparents said it about them – and so on back for ever. Whenever I hear someone use the term “these days” I switch off.

  6. The Indonesian government should consult Richard Dawkins on how to organise their education.
    I’m sure he could give them some very effective advice.
    I watched”the genius of Charles Darwin “again, and the cowardly politically correct attitude of science teachers made me realise why Richard has concern.
    The true question is: Should school teachers teach non empirical bollocks?

  7. “Right now many students don’t have character, tolerance for others, empathy for others

    If they want to instill tolerance and empathy, why do they want to replace science and truth with a manifesto for devisiveness that is obsessed with an “us vs them” mentality, to the point of psychosis? Here are some excerpts from the first few pages of the Koran, and what it says about non-believers, keeping in mind that in Islam a “non-believer” is any non-Mulsim – not just athiests. (I don’t claim to be an expert on the Koran. I only tried to read it for educational purposes and after 10 pages threw the fucking thing across the room.)

    1:6 – 1:7 “Show us the straight path, The path of those whom Thou hast favoured; Not the (path) of those who earn Thine anger nor of those who go astray.”

    2:6 – 2:7 “As for the Disbelievers, Whether thou warn them or thou warn them not it is all one for them; they believe not. Allah hath sealed their hearing and their hearts, and on their eyes there is a covering. Theirs will be an awful doom. “

    2:24 “…guard yourselves against the Fire prepared for disbelievers, whose fuel is of men and stones.”

    2:39 “But they who disbelieve, and deny Our revelations, such are rightful Peoples of the Fire. They will abide therein.”

    2:65 – 2:66 “And ye know of those of you who broke the Sabbath, how We said unto them: Be ye apes, despised and hated! And We made it an example to their own and to succeeding generations, and an admonition to the God-fearing. “

    2:88 “And they say: Our hearts are hardened. Nay, but Allah hath cursed them for their unbelief. Little is that which they believe.”

    2:89 “…The curse of Allah is on disbelievers.”

    2:90 “…They have incurred anger upon anger. For disbelievers is a shameful doom.”

    2:104 “…For disbelievers is a painful doom.”

    Okay, children, that first few pages of the Koran is enough of an introduction to tolerance for others for today. Now open your alchemy books to page 34 to find out how salt water and fresh water don’t mix.

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