East London School Probed over Links to Islamic Extremism

John Dunne et al., London Evening Standard, November 20, 2014

Parents today expressed their shock at a damning report accusing a London school of failing to protect children from extremism.

Sir John Cass’s Foundation and Red Coat Church of England school, where 80 per cent of pupils are Bengali Muslim, will be put into special measures by Ofsted for not monitoring the activities of an Islamic society set up by sixth-formers.

In a report to be published tomorrow, the secondary school in Tower Hamlets borough will be classed as failing.

In particular, it was criticised over a Facebook site set up by the society that contained links to hardline Islamist preachers–a move that could have made pupils vulnerable to radicalisation, it is claimed. Today headteacher Haydn Evans was holding an urgent meeting with staff to discuss the report, which has been leaked.

Six other Tower Hamlets schools–all independent Muslim faith schools–are expected to be failed by Ofsted. Sir Michael Wilshaw, Chief Inspector of Schools, has written a warning letter to Education Secretary Nicky Morgan.

Parents and teachers at Sir John Cass, in Stepney, called on the headteacher to give a full response to Ofsted. The report also  criticises the alleged lack of monitoring of a YouTube channel set up by the Islamic society, and playground segregation of boys and girls.

Sharon Chambers, whose 12-year-old daughter Georgia attends the school, said: “She has always been happy and I have not had any problems. I am concerned about reports of Facebook links with extremists. The boys and girls should also play together in the same playground, and they should change that.  As a parent I will express my concerns about this. But overall what Ofsted has said is a bit of a shock.”

Faruk Abdul, whose 11-year-old son is a pupil at Sir John Cass, said: “This is a good school and I do not think there is a problem with extremism. The boys and girls should have different entrances and playgrounds, I think.”

A teacher added: “This is a good school with a good head. These matters will be discussed this morning. There is no problem with the segregation we have found and the head will be looking at the Facebook claims. Claims about the sixth-formers are a surprise.”

Local education sources accused Ofsted of over-reacting. Sir John Cass has been on the list of the country’s most improved schools for years, and was ranked outstanding at its two last  inspections. A source told The Independent the situation was different to the “Trojan horse” affair in Birmingham: “There are no governors wanting to take over the school and introduce hardline Islamic practices.”

Tony Mullee, chief executive of school trustee Sir John Cass’s Foundation, said: “We are greatly concerned by the re-port. We remain committed to addressing the safeguarding issues and will be assessing the necessary action to return the school to an outstanding rating.”

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  • superlloyd

    More hand wringing and turning a blind eye to the Islamic insurgents. Islam is simply incompatible with any society that is not Islamic. Nearly 1400 years and we haven’t learnt a goddamn thing about the insidious, evil nature of the Islamic threat and its’ perpetual contempt and intolerance to those lucky not to be muslims.

    • NoMosqueHere

      The muslims are flush with oil money. That is the difference between now and the nearly 1400 preceding years. Brits, French, and Americans are up for sale.

  • David Ashton

    Lincolnshire school probed for having only white English pupils.

  • B.A_2014

    Each day my contempt for the English grows. On question time tonight , the
    only argument the UKIP candidate put forward was in relation to the economy. I know he can hardly talk about racial differences but he could come at it from a cultural point of view. UKIP would rather bash eastern Europeans instead of talking about the real parasites in the UK. But God forbid they be accused of racism. UKIP are constantly made to look like fools on eastern European immigration. In the long run they drive down wages and marginally pay a little more into the tax system than they take out through benefits and infrastructural costs. The college of London estimated, I believe, the cost of immigration from outside the EU has been over 100 billion since 1995.

  • Lion’s Mane

    It’s just so perfectly natural that a school in London, UK should be 80 percent Bengali Muslim. Given these ideal circumstances, it is indeed a great shock that this thoroughly British school could come under unpatriotic influence of any kind.

  • dd121

    Bet if they send that probe deep enough, it will stick a Muzzie.

  • rightrightright

    ‘Faruk Abdul, whose 11-year-old son is a pupil at Sir John Cass, said: “This is a good school and I do not think there is a problem with extremism. The boys and girls should have different entrances and playgrounds, I think.”

    Because to him, extremism is normal and to be commended rather than a problem. What this import ‘thinks’ about segregation is immaterial. His ‘thinking’ with regard to segregation is in breach of the law of the land, the only law that matters and which ought (if our corrupt politicians had the will) to override all other laws, particularly the nastiness of sharia law.

    • none of your business

      So11i year old Bengali muslim boys are so precocious and out of control sexually they need to be separated from the girls by fences and walls?

      • rightrightright

        More that these kids learn their place as early in life as possible. Women to be separated, locked up behind walls.

  • LeonNJ

    Is there a school in Bangladesh that has 80% white students?

  • I don’t know what they were up to other than wanting sexual segregation and no doubt criticising ‘western’ foreign policy, but in my opinion what people in this country ought to be more concerned about is that scores of “Church of England” schools across England are majority Muslim and non-White.

    When it comes to separate entrances for males and females, the stone brickwork on many an old British school, perhaps particularly Church schools, used to instruct different entrances for girls and boys – and I remember at my junior school in the 1980s the boys had to play in one playground and the girls in another.

    Although it is often handy to jump on the Muslims for this kind of thing, in many regards they are just doing some things which we used to do ourselves in more prestigious times.

  • archer

    You can pretty much write off the U.K.

  • scutum

    I think England is toast. The degradation of their country has gone to far. the best thing Scotland, Northern Ireland and Wales could do is secede right now and become independent before they are over run.

  • Steve_in_Vermont

    And all this time I thought the sketches for Monty Python were fictional.