Schools will face action if they fail to promote ‘British values’

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SCHOOLS will face action if they discriminate against pupils based on their gender or fail to challenge religious prejudice under new government plans to promote British values in the classroom.

They will also be expected to confront pupils, parents or school staff that express intolerant or extremist views, the Department for Education (DfE) said.

The proposals are outlined in a new consultation document published by the DfE which has been drawn up in the wake of the alleged “Trojan Horse” plot by Muslim governors to take over a number of schools in Birmingham.

Under the change, from this September, schools will have to “actively promote” British values such as democracy, tolerance, mutual respect, the rule of law and individual liberty.

The new regulations state that schools will have to show how they are embedding British values.

This includes challenging anyone that expresses opinions that are contrary to fundamental British values, and bans schools from discriminating against girls on the basis of their gender or encouraging prejudice against those of other faiths or beliefs. Proposals for schools to “actively promote”

British values were announced by Education Secretary Michael Gove earlier this month after it was confirmed that five Birmingham schools have been placed into special measures following inspections as part of investigations into the ‘’Trojan Horse’’ allegations.

Since then some schools in Bradford have also been linked to the events in Birmingham.

Most recently a leading teacher in the city claimed that a previous head teacher at Carlton Bolling College had been forced out of her post because of tensions with the governing body over religious issues. The claim was made by Nick Weller, the chief executive of the Bradford Partnership, a body which represents heads in the city. However this was denied by the school’s chairman of governors Faisal Khan.