Creationists to open free school

A free school run by creationists is among more than 100 approved by the Government to open next year.

The evangelical Everyday Champions Church first proposed a free school that would teach creationism as a valid scientific theory last year.

That application was rejected by the Government on the basis that "the teaching of creationist views as a potentially valid alternative theory [to evolution] is not acceptable in a 21st-century state-funded school".

Now a new bid submitted by a group of individuals from the Church, but without its formal backing, has been accepted. The backers say Exemplar Academy in Newark, Nottinghamshire, will have a faith ethos but will not be formally designated a faith school, and will only teach creationism in RE.

Richy Thompson, campaigners manager at the British Humanist Association, said that the proposed school was "absolutely still dangerous".

The Department of Education said that the new school would be banned from teaching creationism in science classes, but it would be allowed in religious education lessons.

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