SECULAR campaigners have raised concerns over the range of religious groups seeking access to state schools.

A list obtained by the Scottish Secular Society (SSS) shows 16 groups, some of which are radical evangelists, have registered an interest in working with both primary and secondary schools in the Peterhead area, by taking part in activities such as assemblies, prayer groups and games sessions. Of the 16 groups registered groups, seven have definitely already been given access to schools.

Among the 16 listed are Kairos Church, which according its website, believes in "speaking with other tongues" and the bible End Times prophecy, heralding in the "climax of this age and the return of Lord Jesus Christ". It also runs regular evangelical Alpha courses.

The website explains that Kairos is the Greek word for "appointed time" or "opportune moment" and asks: "We are walking into our Kairos time - will you join us?"

The Living Waters Community Church is also on the list. According to its website it is part of the DOVE Christian Fellowship International, which states part of its mission is to "see children, youth and adults come to a saving knowledge of the Lord Jesus Christ, the un-evangelised hear the good news and churches planted in all nations."

The list also includes the Apex Church in Peterhead, which describes itself as a "vibrant Pentecostal church".

Garry Otton, founder of the SSS, said mainstream churches were bring replaced by a "new, smaller, hard-core, socially conservative progeny of zealous individuals".

The SSS has lodged a petition at the Scottish Parliament calling for the Scottish Government to issue official guidance barring the teaching of creationism in classrooms in Scottish schools. It is due to be considered by Holyrood's education and culture committee.

The Sunday Herald attempted to contact the named churches but none replied.

Andrew Griffiths, head of primary education and curriculum development at Aberdeenshire Council said: "Through religious and moral education and in line with Curriculum for Excellence, Aberdeenshire pupils learn about many different faiths and cultures.

"Young people are encouraged to be tolerant, understanding and respectful of the beliefs of others.

"Visits to schools by representatives of various beliefs or faiths are not unusual and if any parent has concerns or wishes that their child should not participate in religious activities we encourage them to contact their local school directly."