|Message ||Ofsted staff were forced to abandon their inspection of a Muslim primary school in Luton on Thursday after being confronted by parents angry that their children as young as nine had been questioned in private about their attitudes to homosexuality. The inspectors, including a senior employee, cut short their review of the Olive Tree primary school, an independent Muslim faith school, after the group of parents said they would withdraw their children from the school as long as the inspectors remained. Next time, Ofsted is going to ask Muslim children in Muslim schools about their sexual activities with opposite sexes. Muslim schools must teach children that sex out side marriage is a sin and also homosexuality is a sin. This is the main reason why Muslim community would like to send their children to Muslim schools with Muslim teachers. There is no place for a non-Muslim child or a teacher in a Muslim school. Muslim schools should be inspected by Muslim Inspectors.
These Ofsted inspectors should resign for frightening young children with their sexual views. Ultimately, it is parents, not teachers, who are responsible for their children's moral teaching and guidance. And in this case in Luton, the parents exercised their parental responsibilities, fully. These questions you raise are of sexual and moral matters, that certainly should not be put to young children without the presence or consent of their parents, who have exercised their parental rights by threatening to remove their children from the school in Luton if Ofsted inspectors were allowed to continue their cross examination of young children about their views on homosexuality. OFSTED, failed teachers, failed pupils. Muslim schools should be inspected by Muslim members of the Ofsted who understand their needs and demands. Non-Muslim inspectors and teachers are not in a position to inspect and teach in Muslim schools. Ofsted should concentrate on the standard of education in core subjects like English, Math and Sciences. Ofsted reports on 4 areas for every school, Teaching and learning, Management, Pupil behaviour and Achievement. It is very difficult to work out which of these groups would cover the questioning. Sounds like Ofsted making things up as they go along.
Who can blame these parents? What kind of person asks questions like those to a 9 year old? Ofsted is out of control. This country is being turned upside down by some ideological approach which has nothing to do with 'good parenting'. Children, note CHILDREN do not need these sorts of questions. By all means teach them about tolerance and respect for the law, but let children be children. A subject? Why homosexuality and not pornography then? What other attitudes should be checked off the list? How many attitudes should be checked? Or are some attitudes less 'acceptable' to the thought police than others? This is unadulterated political correctness gone nuts. The problem as it was expressed at the beginning of the article is not primarily with the question per se, but with the fact that the children were left alone with an adult they didn't know and then asked these questions. That is surely utterly inappropriate. Indeed, if I were an Ofsted inspector I would refuse to see a child without an accompanying adult because of the danger of molestation accusations. Ofsted's inquisitorial style and political correctness have both gone crazy. There are ways of finding out about children's attitudes by simply listening on the playground and listening and observing in class. Honestly, I think this country is going mad... It is no ones business what your attitude is to homosexuality, let alone expecting a nine year old to even have an opinion. What are they going to do if they reply that "its a bit weird" Ask them about their bikes or roller skates or favourite pets. They are children for God's sake!!
This is really a story about the very very variable quality of inspection teams. It's a well known fact in education, and it damages the integrity of Ofsted as an inspectorate. The people who run Ofsted should be held accountable. There are some good teams, and some very poor ones. Who quality controls them? Those people should be made accountable. The problem with Ofsted, I think, is its leader. One who's more interested in appearing in the media and playing "philosopher king" off his territory than ensuring his organisation is run properly. It seems ridiculous to me that he went straight from being a head teacher to running the inspectorate. Don't think he'd ever run an organisation at all.If someone officially pulled rank on me (similar to Ofsted inspectors); and demanded to know my sexual views, I would tell them to sod off, and go and get a life. Unfortunately, the children in question, did not have the years of experience to do this when confronted by Ofsted inspectors, who should be more concerned about the education in Luton, from personal experience of living there and looking after 3 small children, it is not so good. Many people who are followers of some religions are uneasy about homosexuality, indeed it is proscribed by them, and whatever the more liberal demand their belief is unlikely to change. What is the response going to be from Ofsted if a child states that practising homosexuality is wrong and against their religion's teaching, that of course being what they are taught at home ? It is not the school that is teaching this it is in all their religious teachings and books- e.g. the Bible.
The questioning about homosexuality is badly handled but probably comes from good intentions. The more worrying line of questioning is mentioned near the end of the article: 'The inspectors also asked the children if they had seen anything on the news about terrorism that they had discussed in class.' What concerns do they have about Muslim pupils' knowledge of terrorism? The article doesn't elaborate but if I was a parent at this school I'd be furious about this. It's actually quite chilling. There is absolutely no need to talk to children sex. Homophobic or not. I wouldn't be bloody happy about pseudopeado talk to a child. It's not right you sick people. Whatever happened to pubescent sex education ???? WHY OH WHY CAN'T WE ALLOW CHILDREN THEIR INNOCENCE? If I was a nine year old boy, alone in a room with a strange man, and that man started asking me those sorts of questions, I would be worried that he was going to sexually abuse me. Leave them alone to grow up. The majority are not homophobic, racist or sexist in a playground. They are picking bullying for whatever reason. They are kids. The snap out of it during secondary school. Usually rebelling against whatever they were taught to hate. Leave them alone.
The problem is the Islamification of schools through the sheer weight of numbers of Muslims in them. Attitudes to gays and terrorism may be some kind of litmus test for such Islamification but Ofsted seem to have approached this in a clumsy and insensitive way. The elephant in the room is that if you have a school full of Muslims then it is always going to be an Islamist school. It's too late to avoid that now. Islam outlaws homosexuality. It's perfectly reasonable to ensure children forced into a religion and a religious school by their parents are educated and accepting, and generally set up to become good citizens. It's also reasonable to suspect a Muslim school, wouldn't encourage acceptance of homosexuality, or discourage playground negativity towards it.
The parent(s) of children being asked seemingly rather directly about "gays" might have reported this directly to the Police and demanded an investigation. There could have been accusations of 'grooming', surely there should have been two people in the room when such a question is put? Should the Ofsted inspector concerned have turned out to be homosexual, perhaps a question that some of the parents might have posed, then there could have been repercussions. Certainly it would have been used by the 'Tabloids'. If the matter is accurately reported then Ofsted are behaving in a really insensitive and probably incompetent manner. Religions may variously accommodate homosexuality but their adherents may certainly resist attacks on their beliefs and therefore their freedom. Hinduism outlaws homosexuality. So does Sikhism, Buddhism, Judaism and Christianity! I have been a Governor of a Muslim school and I would have been up in arms if I found out such questions were asked to small kids and no mention was made in any Governors training regarding school inspections that this kind of question were asked. Faith schools do not condone same sex relationships, this is true of Catholic and C-o-E schools - so does seem unfair to focus on an Islamic school. Ofsted needs to be put into special ensures as it is clearly not fit for the purpose. Let's hope this is the final nail. Get a grip OFSTED and stop trying to find pathetic ways to demonise the Muslim faith schools! Ofsted is behaving like the
Stasi used to do in East Germany. There is no place for this kind of surveillance in a free society.
London School of Islamics Trust