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Family Law

The leading authority on all aspects of family law

20 DEC 2012

An orthodox approach to education

Joanne Ecob and Florence Iveson

36 Bedford Row:

'An orthodox approach to education' examines the important leading judgment of Munby LJ in Re G (Education: Religious Upbringing) [2012] EWCA Civ 1233, [2013] 1 FLR (forthcoming) in which guidance is given as to how family courts should approach issues involving education and fundamental religious practices, where there is parental conflict.

The authors reflect upon the court's approach to and consideration of the following issues:

  • The history of and what is meant by the term a child's welfare within s 1 of the Children Act 1989 and what standard or yardstick should be used to assess 'welfare'.
  • What in today's society is the task of the ordinary reasonable parent and what is the task of a judge acting as a judicial reasonable parent in deciding what is in the best interests of a child.

The article goes on to consider what Munby LJ sets down as the three key values which should inform decisions as to 'welfare' - equality of opportunity, supporting  aspiration and providing the greatest possibility for choice in later life - in order to evaluate the implications of that approach in a modern society.

The full version of this article appears in the January 2013 issue of Family Law.

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