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Bahai Education

Children's Activities

Bahá’í Education in State Schools


Bahá’í writings emphasise that education must be spiritual as well as material. Spiritual education embodies those virtues or attributes which, when kindled in the hearts and minds of children, not only guide their morals, but also enhance their material education. Bahá'í Scripture Classes are held at :

  • Mount Terry Primary School (Albion Park)

  • Flinders Primary School

  • Shellharbour Primary School

  • Barrack Heights  Primary School

  • Shell Cove Primary School

  • Mount Warrigal Primary School

Basic Themes Taught

  • Knowledge of God - the loving Creator of all

  • Development of virtues

  • Study of World Religions

  • The spiritual nature of people

  • The importance of prayer

  • Moral and character education

  • Respect for parents and elders

  • The importance of family

  • Elimination of prejudice

  • Celebration of unity in diversity

  • The oneness of the world’s major religions

  • World peace begins with each one of us

  • Men and women are equal

  • Service to others as worship to God

Baha'i Education in State Schools (BESS) was first taught in government schools in Tasmania nearly 20 years ago and then in New South Wales approximately 13 years ago. These classes were started by parents who wanted their children to have the opportunity to learn about their own religion during Religious Education lessons. In subsequent years these classes have expanded and BESS is now taught in Victoria, New South Wales, Queensland, Northern Territory and Western Australia. There are approximately 3,000 children attending these classes throughout the country. All children have written permission from their parents to attend and do so regardless of their cultural or religious background.

Teachers of Baha'i Education in State Schools are accredited and go through a standard approval process. (This includes any state education department requirements). We encourage teachers to undertake continuous training and we offer training courses on a regular basis.

Baha'i education classes aim to contribute to the awakening and development of the spiritual nature of every child attending the classes, complementing the material and physical education provided by schools. One aspect of spirituality is the development of virtues. Virtues such as kindness, honesty, love, service and courtesy, which may be seen as the building blocks of character, are explored in depth. Baha'is believe that every child is a storehouse of virtues waiting to be developed. By noticing when a child is practicing a virtue, and by calling a child to a virtue, we support the child in their spiritual development. The development of spiritual qualities in individuals is the foundation of a peaceful world.

Another purpose of Baha'i education is to foster in students the understanding that no matter what religion one has, we all worship the same God, only the name and form of worship differ. A fundamental principle of the Baha'i Faith is the belief in the oneness of religion - that is, not only do we respect all religions but believe they are all fundamentally related. The students learn that the world's religions are like chapters of one book. The students gain understandings of the major religions of the world from a Baha'i perspective, such as indigenous spirituality, Hinduism, Zoroastrianism, Buddhism, Christianity, Judaism and Islam, and understand how they connect with each other. The teaching of virtues is like a golden thread of commonality that runs through them all.

One of the fundamental principles of Baha'i education is to facilitate the development of the capacity to think, independently and objectively, and actively seek truth by this means. Thus Baha'i education does not seek to convert or indoctrinate. Students are encouraged to question and explore.

In addition Baha'i education classes attempt to develop within the students the knowledge, skills, understandings and attitudes required to be world citizens and to embrace the equality of all people regardless of race, religion, nation, class or gender. Students participating in Baha'i education classes explore ways in which they may be able to contribute to society and serve humanity.

Baha'i education classes in state schools are based on the teachings of Baha'u'llah, the founder of the Baha'i Faith, are open to all students regardless of their cultural or religious background, subject to parental approval and are offered in a spirit of service as a contribution to spiritual and moral education in the Australian community.

parental particiption


Kidz 4 Peace

Kidz 4 Peace is a socio-economic development project sponsored by the Baha'i community. In a child-centred environment a culture of learning about peace is created where virtues are used as tools for creating peace at the grass-roots level.

These events give children an active role in learning about peace through the use of the arts, crafts, dance, drama and singing with creativity and action.

Please contact Fresia on (02) 4297 4778

This website is sponsored by The Local Spiritual Assembly of the Bahá'ís of Shellharbour, NSW, Australia.

Send E-mail to shellharbour@nsw.bahai.org.au Last modified: July 2008

 Kidz 4 Peace