The political morality of school composition: the case of religious selection

Matthew Clayton, Andrew Mason, Adam Swift, Ruth Wareham

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    This article presents a normative framework for the assessment of education policies and applies it to the issue of schools’ selecting their students on the basis of religious criteria. Such policies can be justified, and challenged, on many different grounds; public debate is not conducted in terms adequate to the task. The authors’ main objectives are to supplement with non-consequentialist considerations a recent, consequentialist, approach to the normative assessment of education policy proposed by Brighouse et al. (2016, 2018), and to apply the proposed framework to issues of school composition and selection. They argue, further, that policies allowing schools to select all their students on the basis of their parents’ religious affiliation cannot be justified.
    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)827-844
    Number of pages18
    JournalBritish Journal of Political Science
    Issue number2
    Early online date26 Jun 2019
    Publication statusPublished - Apr 2021


    • children's rights
    • education policy
    • parents' rights
    • religious schools
    • school admission criteria


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