HM Chief Inspector on illegal religious schools

Ofsted has published its Annual Report – the first for Amanda Spielman as HM Chief Inspector of Education, Children’s Services and Skills. Of particular interest to this blog are the Report’s comments about conservative religious schools where the legal requirements for shared values and tolerance clash with community expectations, and the creation of illegal ‘schools’ that avoid teaching the unifying messages taught in the vast majority of schools in England. The relevant section of the Report is worth reproducing in full:

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Appeal Court rules on segregation at faith school

Today the Court of Appeal handed down its judgment in Chief Inspector of Education, Children’s Services And Skills v The Interim Executive Board of Al-Hijrah School [2017] EWCA Civ 1426, on appeal from [2016] EWHC 2813 (Admin). The Court ruled that the policy of the Al-Hijrah School of segregating boys from girls amounted to unlawful sex discrimination; from year five, boys and girls at the state-funded Islamic school in Birmingham are completely segregated for religious reasons for all lessons, break and lunchtimes, school trips and school clubs.  Continue reading