September 5, 2009

Nearly 70% of Russians Approve of Introducing Orthodox Religion in Schools

Moscow, Russia
September 4, 2009

Russians are supporting the plans to introduce the Foundations of the Orthodox Culture as a new school curriculum subject, a nationwide poll has shown.

Almost 70% of polled Russians approve of the introduction of this subject at schools, with a quarter of them totally supporting this idea and 44% being more supportive than not, the Levada Center, a pollster, told Interfax.

The survey was conducted among 1,600 respondents in 128 towns across 46 Russian regions on August 14-17. One-fifth of them (19%) were against the introduction of the Orthodox religion at Russian schools.

Seventy-two percent of Russians believe that primary schools in Russian republics should teach both in Russian and in the language spoken by a local ethnic group, at parents' choice. Twenty-one percent want subjects to be taught in Russian only, the rest (7%) could not answer the question.

Russian president Dmitry Medvedev earlier suggested introducing the foundations of the religious culture, history of religion, and the foundations of the secular ethics as an experiment at schools in the Russian regions.