Newsletter October 2017

A Message from the Chair

Dear volunteers, donors, parents and supporters,

It’s been a big year for ethics education. Each week across NSW we’re helping more than 36,500 children to think critically and learn the skills to make well-reasoned decisions. Thank you for enabling our continued growth.

To take stock of how far we’ve come as we approach the end of our seventh year, and to prepare our path for the future, we’re hosting our first Primary Ethics conference on Saturday October 28.

It’s an opportunity to find out more about ethics education, to share experiences and grow.

If you are interested in contributing to the future of ethics education for children, we warmly invite you to attend.

Bruce Hogan, Chair of Primary Ethics

View the program and book your tickets here.


Sue Moffat, Amy Raveneau and Darrin Yates at Central West Awards

Primary Ethics volunteers help make the world a better place. This involves some personal sacrifice – time, money, dedication, and the need to step-up sometimes to take on challenging tasks.

While we often hear from volunteers that giving children access to ethics education is a reward in itself, it’s important that the work of our volunteers be widely recognised in the community. More than 120 individual Primary Ethics volunteers and school ethics teams were peer nominated in the recent NSW Centre for Volunteering Volunteer of the Year Award.

View the gallery here or please send us your photos too.


Recently we’ve seen a number of media stories in which it’s been incorrectly reported that children who opt out of scripture are limited to engage in activities that:

should neither compete with SRE nor be alternative lessons in the subjects within the curriculum or other areas, such as, ethics, values, civics or general religious education.

In fact, the Department of Education removed this discriminatory paragraph from the Religious Education Policy in 2010 after sustained pressure from parents, community members, the Ethics Centre and a number of dedicated individuals who were behind the creation of Primary Ethics.

This was replaced with this paragraph:

Schools are to provide meaningful activities for students whose parents have withdrawn them from special religious education. Where it is reasonably practicable and requested by a parent/caregiver, this may include the option of special education in ethics.

No child should be wasting time in non-scripture, and we’ve been campaigning to set the record straight on this.

The source of this renewed confusion is likely to have been the Department of Education itself, in its response to recommendations from the ARTD report. Read the background and campaign update.


There have been a few recent staff changes in the Primary Ethics office lately. Find out who who’s in the office, and meet our fabulous classroom support team members and trainers on the new Our People page. A compilation of regional managers is up next, and we will be flushing these super heroes out of the shadows for all to see (there are a couple of camera-shy ones, we’re going to have to work on that).


Meerkats help us talk about ‘Getting Even’ & ‘Showing Off’

What different ideas did you hear in ethics class today?

Each term, we compile a summary of recent topics covered in ethics class and send them to parents and carers to help further ethical discussion at home.

We only have several thousand of the estimated 60,000 parents involved in the program on our mailing list however, so if you know of any parents with children in ethics, please invite them to visit our website and click subscribe.

From our recent edition, we ask:

If you found a koala in your backyard, would that make it your pet?

Is it important to understand the rules?

What do we mean when we say ‘Getting Even’?

Read issue 3 of PrimaryEthics@Home here.


Thank you for being a valued supported of ethics education. Please help grow the community by forwarding this email to a friend, or sharing on social media using the icons below.


Primary Ethics receives no government funding. Donations to Primary Ethics are tax deductible.