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Guest Speaker Debates Ethics of Warfare

PTE Students Discuss Utilitarianism with Lieutenant Colonel Sean Scullion.

Our students were encouraged to consider the age-old philosophical question: ‘does the end justify the means?’ in PTE classes on Friday 8 November.

Philosophy, Theology and Ethics (PTE) is a core part of our curriculum for all students, and encourages them to share and evaluate their opinions and beliefs, as well as listening to those of others. The aims of PTE are to enable our students to engage in healthy debate, and develop them as a whole person.

Guest speakers have a key part to play in our PTE programme, and on November 8, Lieutenant Colonel Sean Scullion, who serves in the British Army, visited classes to discuss his experiences. He talked to students about helping to sustain peace, and the ethics of warfare. He explained the differences between consequentialism and utilitarianism and how they might apply in the arena of war. Students then had the chance to ask him any questions and offer their own opinions on the topics at hand.

Margaret Stapylton, Head of PTE, said, ‘It is fantastic when people like Sean are willing to share their experiences and the wisdom they have gleaned from life.  Students and staff appreciated his insight, honesty and integrity.’

Catherine Herring, Head of A Level Philosophy, Ethics and Religious Studies, added, ‘’The students responded to Sean’s experiences with a mixture of awe and respect’.