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Bulski v. Poland, dec., Nos. 46254/99, 31888/02 ECtHR (Fourth Section), 30 November 2004

Type Judgment
Case number 46254/99; 31888/02


The failure of the school authorities to organise an ethics course in conformity with the parents beliefs, as an alternative to the religion course, does not breach the art. 2 of the first additional Protocol to the ECHR.

Normative references

Art. 2 Prot. No. 1 ECHR


1. In principle, it falls within the margin of appreciation left to the Contracting States pursuant to article 2 of Protocol no. 1 decide whether to provide religious education in public schools and, if so, which particular education system should be adopted. The only limit that must not be exceeded in this area is the ban on indoctrination. 

2. The failure to offer ethics courses, as an alternative to religion lessons, where the latter are taught in a pluralistic way and participation in them is optional, cannot be considered a breach of article 2 of the first additional Protocol to the ECHR.