This week's panellistsSamira Ahemd is joined in the studio this week by writer and broadcaster Simon Fanshawe, Christian minister and political campaigner Rev George Hargreaves, business woman and social commentator Katie Hopkins, James Newman from Catholic Voices.
Should teachers be tougher on bad behaviour at school?
Schools are being advised that they should “systematically measure” children’s happiness levels to stop them going off the rails, according to new guidelines from the National Institute for Health and Care Excellence. Some education groups say that this is further evidence of a ‘Nanny state’.
Reports also emerged this week that teachers at a school in Birmingham are considering industrial action after a student excluded for threatening fellow pupils with a knife was allowed to return to lessons. Have we become to soft on children at school? Or would a harsher approach only make the problem worse?
Should recruitment be based on diversity rather than ability?
This month the Police Minister Damian Green said the police must make more use of equality laws to increase the number of black and ethnic minority officers serving. He said: “Police legal departments are naturally risk averse when it comes to diversity, they shouldn’t be.
“It is unlawful to have recruitment quotas based solely on race or gender, but recruitment quotas are not the only means to achieving diversity.”
Simon Fanshawe argues in his Sunday Stand this week that all employers should stop simply always hiring “the best person for the job”. Instead they should actively recruit as diverse a workforce as possible. Not only will this open up more opportunities for more people – it will also improve business performance.
Does John Paul II deserve to be a saint?
On Monday Pope Francis is expected to announce the date when he will make saints of two of contemporary Catholicism’s most important figures – Pope John XXIII and Pope John Paul II.
Historically it has taken centuries for someone to become a saint, although many Catholics were calling for John Paul II’s sainthood immediately after his death. Pope Benedict XVI waived the five-year waiting period usually considered standard before beginning an investigation. Many consider John Paul II to have had a massive effect on ending Communism in Europe and credit him with improving relationships with other religions.
However, there are some who oppose making John Paul II a saint, noting that he oversaw the church during a period in which clergy sex abuse was covered up, causing the greatest damage to the church in memory. There are also many non-Catholics who disagree with venerating a man who spoke out against abortion and contraception.
- Samira Ahmed
- Series Editor
- Dave Stanford
- Neil Dimmock
- George Hargreaves
- Simon Fanshawe
- Katie Hopkins
- James Newman