Councillor rejects city schools link to Trojan plot

Ralph BerryRalph Berry
Ralph Berry
A BRADFORD councillor has said that any allegations that staff had been intimidated by governors at a school in the city will need to be investigated by the new body running the school.

Coun Ralph Berry was responding to the latest claims surrounding Laisterdyke Business and Enterprise College where the governing body has recently been replaced by an interim executive board.

It has been reported that there had been tension over the previous governing body’s plans to bring in Tahir Alam, chairman of governors at Park View Academy in Birmingham, to provide governance training. A national newspaper has also claimed staff had been suspended by the previous governing body.

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Coun Berry said: “These allegations that are coming out now will need to be properly investigated. The council will be working with the school’s Interim Executive Board (IEB).”

Park View is one of the schools at the centre of the “Trojan Horse” row in Birmingham where claims of an alleged take over plot by Muslim governors sparked a series of investigations.

However Coun Berry insisted the Laisterdyke situation had nothing to do with this. “This is a specific situation at a specific school in Bradford.”

Laisterdyke’s governing body was removed and replaced with an IEB because of council concerns about its “actions and effectiveness.” Earlier this week a leading Bradford head teacher claimed there has been a co-ordinated attempt to pursue an Islamic agenda by a small number of school governors in the city.

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Nick Weller, the chief executive of the Bradford Partnership said one headteacher had been forced to leave her job at Carlton Bolling College because she would not give in to the governors involved.

However the school’s chairman of governors, Faisal Khan, has strongly rejected the claims. He said attempts to link Bradford to events in Birmingham felt like a “witchhunt.”

Bradford West Respect MP George Galloway is holding a public meeting in the city today for concerned parents over what he called “the Trojan Horse witch-hunt.”

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