By a Special Correspondent A STRONG plea for the defence of the Catholic educational system which is "not just a question of doctrine," was made by Sir John Newsom, a former Director of Education and author of the Newsom Report.
Speaking in the Free Trade Hall, Manchester. on Friday at the Notre Dame High School annual distribution of prizes, he said Catholic education was "under fire at the moment," not only from critics outside "but even from within the Church."
He continued : "We, as Catholics, are the most obvious body of organised Christian religion. This makes us an object of attack." Critics, he said, argued that Catholic children "should not be indoctrinated or segregated," They attacked the quality of the teaching or the standard of the buildings.
ATTITUDE TO LIFE
"We must resist. If our Church fails then all fails," he said. He stressed that Catholic education must be maintained at all levels from the primary school to the seminary because "it is not just a matter of doctrine but of an attitude to life. Education is learning to be a person."
This was what distinguished Catholic education because the teachers and the parents had a common bond and shared "a total experience of human life."
Sir John concluded : "Catholic education is concerned as much with the Day of Judgement as with A and 0 Levels, and that is a fearful responsibility."