The behaviour of the Department for Education, EFA, Birmingham City Council and Ofsted during the Trojan Hoax fiasco was shocking and irresponsible. With the agenda-driven Michael Gove ordering snap inspections conducted by a biased Ofsted at schools in areas in which the demographic was mainly Muslim, and with the release of Ofsted reports at a critical time for the children who were preparing for their exams, media were swarming around the schools, placing undue, unwarranted strain and stress on the children. Ofsted Inspectors took discriminatory measures which may have caused psychological harm to some pupils.
The impact of this can be seen in the schools which were at the centre of this neocon war on Muslim children; Park View School had reportedly forecasted 73% but has achieved 58% A*-C including English and Maths, whilst Golden Hillock School, whose Riverside Church-linked teachers and governors allegedly added to the smearing of the school at such a significant period in time, looked set to achieve 58% but attained 45% A*-C including English and Maths.
Whilst it could be argued that some other schools may have also suffered similar drops, the scrutiny and impact on these schools in particular was unique constituting an additional factor for their below-expectation achievement. This is a truly saddening state of affairs, especially considering the fact that overall, grades have gone up nationally. The seemingly coordinated assault on the Birmingham schools and the lack of consideration for the pupils in pursuing this discriminatory agenda is revealing.
Al-Hijra School Achieves
Al-Hijrah School was the subject of Andrew Gilligan’s lies and distortions in his spread on the school, which was exposed for containing blatant inaccuracies. If we recall, Al Hijrah School was already being subject to what can only be termed as harassment from the Birmingham City Council (BCC). It was also placed into special measures in December 2013, after which the school made changes in the school leadership and replaced governors. After Gilligan’s article, written in an atmosphere of unrelenting propaganda against the backdrop of the Trojan Hoax allegations in the Torygraph, the school was inundated by the press, which was shoving cameras into the faces of hapless pupils and parents.
However despite the odds, Al-Hijrah school, both primary and secondary, to the credit of the former leadership team and the former governors, exceeded the local and national average, positioning Al-Hijrah School as one of the best performing schools in the whole of Birmingham.
Founder & Chair of the Trust Mr MAK Saqib, former Chair of Governors Mr Waseem Yaqub OBE and previous Executive Head teacher Ms. Anita Baptist warmly congratulated the staff, pupils and parents on their “fearless determination” to deliver outstanding results.
A Parent echoed the sentiments of many when she described Anita as
“An amazing practicing Christian, who dedicated herself to improving this Islamic Faith School. She demonstrated the best British values which people of all faiths should aspire to”.
The former Chair said,
“We persevered with our determination and faith, against all odds, to sustain outstanding academic success and we are proud of our school leaders, governors, parents, staff and students of all ages who continue to enshrine our vision of ‘Excellence in Motion, Bringing out the Best’ for Everyone at Al-Hijrah School.”
Is the Birmingham Mail Islamophobic?
The neocons must be disappointed because allegedly, directors at Birmingham Mail from the very top pulled an advert placed by Al-Hijrah celebrating the school’s success at 10:30pm on Wednesday (19/08/2014). The advert had been agreed and finalised to be published in yesterday’s news.
Is it the case that Birmingham Mail has trouble evening publishing an advert which statistically counters the narrative that Al-Hijrah is a “troubled” faith school?
NOTE: Al-Hijrah Press Statement can be accessed here: Al-Hijrah Press release 21-08-14.