Thank you for contacting me about secularism.

I agree that we should all work towards a society in which all citizens, regardless of religious belief or lack of it, can live together fairly and cohesively. We also agree on some other items in the NSS manifesto, though I am afraid far from all.

Freedom of speech is indeed a fundamental British value which should be instilled through our education system. I support the recent work of the Universities Minister, who has been championing the case for free speech on university campuses.

I also agree that work should be done to better measure the influence of sharia law in the UK, which is why I welcomed the launch of an independent review into sharia law, which is expected to report in the coming months.

On the issue of Anglican schools, I can understand why some secular families might not wish to send their children to faith schools. However, many families of all denominations and none remain keen to send their children to faith schools. As such, I welcome the Government's wide ranging education reforms which are raising school standards across the country, and allow parents, both secular and religious, greater choice of good schools in which to educate their children.

Thank you again for taking the time to contact me.