The Value of a Christian Education

A study of teenage males in England found some marked differences between those who attend Christian schools and those who attend public schools.

First, they were less permissive sexually:

Three quarters of Christian pupils said it was wrong to have sex before the legal age of consent at 16, compared with 29 per cent of other teenagers.

And 73 per cent of the Christians interviewed said abortion was always wrong, compared with 39 per cent of their peers.

Second, their mental health was superior:

Professor Francis, whose research is published in the British Journal of Religious Education, also found that Christian school pupils appeared to have a more optimistic outlook on life.

Teenage boys and men in their early twenties are recognised as being two of the groups most at risk of developing mental illnesses such as depression.

While 30 per cent of boys educated in secular schools said they had considered suicide, the figure at Christian schools was 20 per cent. Some 60 per cent of the nondenominational school pupils said they "often" felt depressed. The same was true of about half of the Christian-educated pupils.

Of course, I expect there is a fair amount of self-selection going on, since Christian parents are more likely to send their kids to Christian schools. But the point about Christian values, whether from parents or teachers, remains.

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