North Sydney Public School

Towards the highest

Telephone02 8904 7800

Religion and ethics

NSW public schools offer special religious education and special education in ethics, delivered by approved providers wherever available.

During enrolment, you can choose a special religious education option for your child from the school’s available approved providers. You can withdraw your child from special religious education by selecting alternative meaningful activities, or special education in ethics if it’s available.

You can update your preference by writing to the school or through the online form available at participating schools.
Visit the department’s website for more information about religion and ethics. 

Special Religious Education (SRE)

Special Religious Education classes are offered one lesson per week by local religous groups. These groups are responsible for the content that is taught during the class. A class teacher will be in the classroom for supervision only. Children not attending scripture or ethics are supervised in groups by a classroom teacher and take part in quiet activities.

At the Dem we can offer the following.  These groups are dependent upon SRE teachers/volunteers being available, so not all groups may be on offer at all times. The following short descriptions have been supplied by each group for your information.



Hindu classes provides the opportunity for students to connect with their rich spiritual and cultural heritage in a way that is both deeply meaningful and relevant in modern Australian life. A major focus of Hindu SRE is to provide a supportive environment for students to experience the benefits of Hindu Meditation. Meditation has innumerable benefits for students, helping to promote increased well-being, better social skills and greater academic skills.  Hinduism fosters the positive values of respect, tolerance, empathy, resilience and service to others and encourages a healthy, balanced and meaningful life in harmony with God, our community and the natural world.


Protestant Scripture refers to the non-Catholic Christian denominations such as Anglican, Baptist, Lutheran, Methodist, Presbyterian and Uniting Church. Sensitive to the diversity in each class and appropriately trained in loving communication and child protection, our scripture teachers aim to help the children engage with the Bible and understand the basics of the Christian faith, in an age appropriate way. We use a curriculum called Connect, published by Christian Education Publishers. Particular focus is given to Easter and Christmas each year, where we usually combine with Catholic classes in an assembly, with some classes presenting items.

Roman Catholic

Welcome from the Parishes of Our Lady of the Way; North Sydney, Lavender Bay and Kirribilli! What happens in Catholic Scripture? We have a dedicated team of Parish volunteers, including some Dem parents. Our Scripture teachers use curriculum materials produced by the Archdiocese of Sydney. At the core of the curriculum is our belief in the dynamic presence of our loving, forgiving God, who invites us into relationship.  The sessions involve sharing our faith with music, drama, stories, discussion, art and craft activities. We pray in different ways to help the students develop their personal relationship with God and find a way of prayer which best suits them.  We aim to develop the key Christian values of respect, understanding and love of God and all God's creation.


Students on the BJE Jewish Learning Journey, cover fundamentals about Jewish traditions, culture, festivals, and heritage. The inclusive, interactive curriculum recognises all practices of Judaism and embraces diverse Jewish identities.

Special Education in Ethics (SEE)

Ethics classes support children to develop a lifelong capacity for making well-reasoned decisions about ethical issues. Through the give-and-take of reasoned argument students learn to disagree respectfully, to challenge ideas and to support their arguments with considered evidence rather than according to habit or peer pressure. Our volunteer Ethics teachers, who are trained members of the school and broader community, use detailed lesson materials which present a range of stories, scenarios and questions to generate discussion. Ethics teachers are trained to impartially facilitate student discussions, helping students develop their critical thinking and collaborative inquiry skills. Ethics teachers support student learning by:

·     modelling the inquiry process – by asking questions and encouraging discussion

·     showing genuine curiosity and interest in the questions being discussed

·     staying neutral – ethics teachers are trained to keep their own views out of the discussion

·     creating a positive learning environment – by allowing students time to think, and encouraging students to share ideas and give reasons

The Special Education in Ethics program is provided by Primary Ethics.  To enrol your child in Ethics, please make the request in writing to the school via the school email.

If you are interested in becoming an Ethics teacher, please contact the volunteer Ethics Coordinator at the Dem via email at or to find out more information about the program, please visit the Primary Ethics website.

Alternative meaningful activities

'Alternative meaningful activities' may also be known as 'non-SRE'.

Students not attending SRE or SEE are to be provided with supervised 'Alternative meaningful activities'. These activities do not compete with SRE/SEE and are not lessons in the curriculum. Suitable activities may include reading, private study, completing homework or other activities as considered to be appropriate by the school community.