‘Muslim Extremist’ nurseries to lose funding

Aug 8, 2014 by

Councils are to be given powers to stop funding early-years providers with links to extremism, Education Secretary Nicky Morgan has announced.

The move follows a letter-writing campaign by the British Humanist Association.

Members wrote to MPs and responded to a nursery funding consultation, raising concerns about extremist links and creationist teaching in some nurseries.

The Department for Education said the change closes “a technical loophole”.

Mrs Morgan said that toddlers must learn “fundamental British values” and that schools and nurseries that do not “support this aim” should not receive public money.

The move comes after allegations that hardline Islamists tried to take over Birmingham schools in what was dubbed the Trojan Horse plot.

‘Modern Britain’

The BHA says about 450 of its members responded to a recent government consultation, asking for funding to be withdrawn where there were concerns that nurseries were being run by people with “extremist views” or who promoted creationism as a scientific fact.

About a thousand people also wrote to their MPs.

Announcing the measures, Mrs Morgan, who replaced Michael Gove as education secretary in last month’s Cabinet reshuffle, said there is no place for extremism “anywhere in the education system”.

Funding would be withheld from establishments that teach creationism as scientific fact, Mrs Morgan said.

A Department for Education spokeswoman said the change brings nurseries into line with schools where funding can be withdrawn if there are concerns about “extremism”, pending investigation by Ofsted.

Inspections will also include checks to ensure early-years providers promote British values.

Early-years children will be taught about learning right from wrong, learning to take turns and share, and to challenge negative attitudes and stereotypes.

“One of the most important roles of the education system is that it should prepare young people for life in modern Britain,” Mrs Morgan said.

‘Aggressive Islamist agenda’

“I am clear that public money should not be used to support any school or early-years provider that does not support this aim because it seeks to promote ideas and teachings that run counter to fundamental British values.”

The government will launch a consultation to seek views on the proposals from the public and early-years providers.

The changes come after a report into the Trojan Horse scandal by Peter Clarke, former counter-terrorism chief at the Metropolitan Police, last month.

It concluded there was a “co-ordinated” campaign by extremists to force out head teachers and impose an “aggressive Islamist agenda” on schools.

Mrs Morgan said there had been “disturbing” evidence that people with a “shared ideology” were trying to gain control of governing bodies in Birmingham.

Andrew Copson, the BHA chief executive, welcomed Mrs Morgan’s decision.

via BBC News – ‘Extremist’ nurseries to lose funding – Nicky Morgan.

Print Friendly, PDF & Email

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.