18 May 2016

Ofsted Admits 'Mistake' In Islamic School Report

The independent regulator says it has reinspected the school, after initially being told it was not allowed to talk with students.

Ofsted has admitted it failed to properly inspect a school run by a conservative Muslim sect because the inspector was "prohibited" from talking to pupils or staff.

The inspector's report into child safety at the private Zakaria Muslim Girls' High School in Batley claimed celebrations for an Islamic festival meant he could only speak to senior managers.

The school, which disputes Ofsted's claim that it prevented access to pupils, is one of three facing further action from authorities following investigations by Sky News into the secretive Deobandi sect.

Deobandis, many of whom shun contact with non-Muslims, are thought to control around half of Britain's private Islamic schools.

Ofsted's published report on the Batley school dated October 2015 stated: "It was not possible to talk to students during this visit as they and the staff were celebrating the festival of Eid." [Sky News] Read more