CHRISTIANS are outraged that the birth of Jesus Christ will no longer be cited when recording dates under the new national history curriculum.
High school students will not use the terms BC (Before Christ) and AD (Anno Domini) when referencing dates.
Although history dates won't change, with textbooks still using the birth of Christ as the change point, they will use the neutral terms BCE (Before Common Era), BP (Before Present) and CE (Common Era).
Archbishop of Sydney Peter Jensen said yesterday that removing BC and AD from the curriculum was an "intellectually absurd attempt to write Christ out of human history".
"It is absurd because the coming of Christ remains the centre point of dating and because the phrase 'common era' is meaningless and misleading,"he told The Daily Telegraph.
It was akin to calling Christmas the festive season, he said.
A spokesman for the Australian Curriculum, Assessment and Reporting Authority,responsible for developing the national curriculum from kindergarten to Year 12, said BCE and CE were to be introduced because this was an increasingly common standard for the representation of dates.
The little known term BP (Before Present) will be used when dealing with "very ancient history and archaeology, and allows for the teaching of more sophisticated understandings of representations of time".
In anticipation of the curriculum change, textbooks for student teachers such as Teaching And Learning In Aboriginal Education, by Neil Harrison, were already using the term BP.
Federal Opposition education spokesman Christopher Pyne said: "Australia is what it is today because of the foundations of our nation in the Judeo-Christian heritage that we inherited from Western civilisation.
"Kowtowing to political correctness by the embarrassing removal of AD and BC in our national curriculum is of a piece with the fundamental flaw of trying to deny who we are as a people."
The curriculum was to have been introduced next year but has been delayed.
HISTORY OF CE AND BCE
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