Religious education

Schools, education and learning

The Standing Advisory Council for Religious Education (SACRE) is responsible for determining the syllabus for religious education (RE) in council run or funded schools in Waltham Forest.

Holocaust Memorial Day Click to get info

What is Holocaust Memorial Day?

27 January is the day for everyone to mark Holocaust Memorial Day (HMD) by remembering the millions of people murdered in the Holocaust, under Nazi Persecution and in the subsequent genocides in Cambodia, Rwanda, Bosnia and Darfur.

27 January also marks the liberation of Auschwitz-Birkenau, the largest Nazi death camp. On HMD we honour the survivors of these regimes and challenge ourselves to use the lessons of their experiences to inform our lives today.

On HMD you will be joining thousands of others who come together at activities all over the UK to learn the lessons of the past and recognise that genocide does not just take place on its own - it’s a steady process which can begin if discrimination, racism and hatred are not checked and prevented. We’re fortunate here in the UK; we are not at immediate risk of genocide. However, discrimination has not ended, nor has the use of the language of hatred or exclusion. There is still much to do to create a safer future and HMD is an opportunity to start this process.

Be the Light in the Darkness

Each year Holocaust Memorial Day takes on a new theme.  The theme for HMD 2021 is ‘Be the Light in the Darkness’. It encourages everyone to reflect on the depths humanity can sink to, but also the ways individuals and communities resisted that darkness to ‘be the light’ before, during and after genocide.

Below you can view the virtual exhibition exploring the theme of ‘Be the Light in the Darkness’.

Holocaust Memorial Day Digital Exhibition

Download our Holocaust Memorial Day exhibition (PDF - 2.94MB)

Waltham Forest’s Virtual Ceremony

The pre-recorded ceremony was filmed in separate locations.

Timeline of Holocaust Memorial Day Events

Noon: A virtual observation on Waltham Forest Social Media

5pm: Join the Waltham Forest SACRE for an online observation

8pm: Join the nation and Light the darkness
Light a candle and put it in your window at 8pm on 27 January. To remember those who were murdered for who they were.

8.05pm: Share with the nation
Upload a photo of your candle on social media, using the hashtags #HolocaustMemorialDay #LightTheDarkness

Religious education in schools celebrates the diversity of religious and human experience.

Every maintained school in England must provide a basic curriculum (RE, sex education and the National Curriculum).

Religious Education is a statutory subject of the basic curriculum whilst not being part of the National Curriculum.

SACRE Click to get info

By law each Local Authority (LA) is required to establish a Standing Advisory Council on religious education (SACRE).

The role of a SACRE is to:

  • Advise the LA on matters connected with religious education (RE) in community schools and foundation schools which do not have a religious character
  • Ensure RE is taught by the local Agreed Syllabus
  • To advise the authority and its teachers on matters concerning collective worship
  •  Determine on behalf of the LA whether it is appropriate for the requirements to provide daily collective worship according to the legal requirements to be modified for all or some of the pupils of the school
  • Produce and publish an Annual Report of its work

In order that they can bring a wide range of interests and talents to this work, a SACRE is made up of four groups:

  • Group A Christian denominations (other than the Church of England) and other faiths represented within the LA. In Waltham Forest, this group has representatives from a wide range of faiths and beliefs
  • Group B The Church of England
  • Group C Teachers' professional associations / teachers in the LA
  • Group D The Local Authority which in Waltham Forest includes Elected Members from the Majority and Minority parties, a representative of the LA and representatives of Governors of local schools

Members of these groups are nominated by their respective organisations.

2020/2021 Meeting schedule 

Spring 2021

Wednesday 24 March, 5.30pm, Room TBC:

  • Safeguarding in Settings – WP Report
  • Religion and World Views – 2018 report (for discussion)
  • Feedback from SACRE attendance – London wide

Summer 2021

Wednesday 21 April, 5.30pm, Room TBC:

  • Safeguarding in Settings – WP Report 
  • Schools Survey results 
  • Draft annual report produced 
  • Recruitment process and induction pack 
  • Draft annual work plan

Wednesday 7 July, 5.30pm, Room TBC

  • Safeguarding in Settings – WP Report 
  • Draft report approved 
  • Annual work plan 

2021/2022 Meeting schedule 

Autumn 2021    

Wednesday 29 September, 6.30pm, Room TBC:

  • Election of Chair and Vice Chair 
  • Safeguarding in Settings – WP Report 
  • Evaluation of work of SACRE over the year

Wednesday 1 December,  5.30pm, Room TBC:

  • Safeguarding in Settings – WP Report 
  • Data collection from schools for 2020/21 report
  • Attainment data KS4 & 5

Spring 2022

Wednesday 26 January, 5.30pm

  • Neighbourhoods scrutiny committee meeting
  • Safeguarding in Settings – WP Report 

Wednesday 30 March, 5.30pm, Room TBC

  • Safeguarding in Settings – WP Report 
  • Schools Survey 

Summer 2022

Wednesday 25 May, 5.30pm, Room TBC    

  • Safeguarding in Settings – WP Report 
  • Draft report produced
  • Draft annual work programme 
  • Schools Survey results 

Wednesday 6 July, 5.30pm, Room TBC    

  • Safeguarding in Settings – WP Report 
  • Draft report approval 
  • Annual work programme


  • Welcome packs
  • Review of link members for groups 

Refreshments will be provided.

Dates for meetings 2020-2021

Contact Click to get info

SACRE - Religious Education

Governor Services Clerk to SACRE Walthamstow Town Hall,
Room 001,
Forest Road,
E17 4JF 

Telephone: 020 8496 6351