08 July 2016

Children's exposure to extremism is an urgent problem, says Ofsted head

Repeated failures by local authorities to safeguard children from extremism is an “urgent and escalating problem”, the head of Ofsted has told the government, in a scathing report that calls for close monitoring of areas where children are most at risk of radicalisation. Sir Michael Wilshaw claimed that headteachers in Birmingham still faced “intimidation from some elements within the local community” over school policies and teaching of topics such as equality.

In a memo to education secretary Nicky Morgan, Wilshaw said his recent visits to Birmingham, Luton and Bradford had found council officials with “troubling gaps” in their knowledge of vulnerable local children.

“I am particularly concerned about the failure of these authorities to address the problem of children missing from education and to satisfy themselves that these children are not being exposed to harm, exploitation, or the risk of falling under the influence of extremist views,” Wilshaw told Morgan. [The Guardian] Read more