[QODLink]
Inside Story

Extremism in British schools?

UK report portrays a culture of fear and intimidation following claims of a Muslim plot to infiltrate the classroom.

Last updated: 10 Jun 2014 19:17
Email Article
Print Article
Share article
Send Feedback

Britain's top schools inspector has released his findings, following accusations of a plot by hardline Muslims to take over schools in the central city of Birmingham.

The allegation of extremist influence was outlined in what has become known as the 'Trojan Horse' letter. It was unsigned, undated, and believed by many now to be a hoax. One of the education trusts singled out rejected accusations of extremism, saying inspections had been carried out in a "climate of suspicion".

Michael Wilshaw's report detailed an organised campaign to alter the "character and ethos" of schools in Birmingham, a breakdown of trust between governors and staff, and teachers being bullied and living in fear of losing their jobs. He said some of his findings were "deeply worrying and in some ways quite shocking".

The claims have had huge political repercussions, striking at the heart of the British government.

Education secretary Michael Gove says: "Any school could now be subject to rigorous, on-the-spot inspections, with no advance warning and no opportunities to conceal failure. And we will put the promotion of British values at the heart of what every school has to deliver for children."

So is there evidence of an extremist conspiracy in schools or merely individual examples of bad governance?

Presenter: Hazem Sika

Guests:

Khalid Mahmood - a Birmingham Labour MP and chairman of the All-Party Parliamentary Group on Tackling Terrorism

Myriam Francois-Cerrah - a writer and journalist, and contributor to the New Statesman

Sunny Hundal - a blogger, writer and regular contributor to British newspapers

258

Source:
Al Jazeera
Email Article
Print Article
Share article
Send Feedback
Topics in this article
People
Country
City
Organisation
Featured on Al Jazeera
As Western stars re-release 1980s charity hit, many Africans say it's a demeaning relic that can do more harm than good.
At least 25 tax collectors have been killed since 2012 in Mogadishu, a city awash in weapons and abject poverty.
Tokyo government claims its homeless population has hit a record low, but analysts - and the homeless - beg to differ.
3D printers can cheaply construct homes and could soon be deployed to help victims of catastrophe rebuild their lives.
Featured
Pro-Russia leaders' election in Ukraine's east shows bloody conflict is far from a peaceful resolution.
Critics challenge Canberra's move to refuse visas for West Africans in Ebola-besieged countries.
A key issue for Hispanics is the estimated 11.3 million immigrants in the US without papers who face deportation.
In 1970, only two mosques existed in the country, but now more than 200 offer sanctuary to Japan's Muslims.
Hundreds of the country's reporters eke out a living by finding news - then burying it for a price.
join our mailing list