Ofsted rates Dewsbury school 'inadequate' amid concerns over library book

Ofsted inspectors found a book in the library of an Islamic faith school in Dewsbury which says that people who have homosexual sex should be put to death.

Thursday, 29th July 2021, 11:00 am
The Institute of Islamic Education is based in the grounds of the Markazi Mosque on South Street, Savile Town, Dewsbury

Inspectors who visited the Institute of Islamic Education in the grounds of the Markazi Mosque on South Street, Savile Town, in February 2020 found the school “inadequate” and said the quality of education “required improvement”.

When they made a return visit in May this year, they found little improvement had been made.

The report also warned that “fundamental British values are undermined by leaders’ failings” as not all texts in the school library were suitable for pupils.

Inspectors found a book called “Islam on Homosexuality”, which was stamped as a school library book.

The Ofsted report says the book included “inappropriate content which does not encourage respect for those who share one of the protected characteristics set out in the Equality Act 2010.

“The text included sections on punishment of individuals because of their sexuality and views which contradict the rule of law.

“For example, the book included ‘the participants of the homosexual act should be slained (wording in the text) whether they are married or unmarried because filth and mischief of this act surpasses adultery’.

“There is also a paragraph in the book entitled ‘putting to death’.

“In this paragraph there is a statement ‘the evil doers should be put to death’.”

The report, published on the Ofsted website, says when inspectors spoke to leaders about the book there was a “difference of opinion” between some leaders and trustees and the head teacher.

The head teacher was “clear that this book should not be in the school library”.

Other leaders stated that the book was for “research purposes”.

The report added: “By permitting this book to be freely accessible to pupils, leaders are failing to promote respect and tolerance for others, a fundamental British value.”

The boys-only school has 234 pupils aged between 11 and 25 on the roll. There are also 170 boarders.

The school charges £1,400 a year for day pupils and £3,000 for boarders.

The Ofsted report also had concerns about safeguarding.

Inspectors said school leaders did not follow Department for Education guidance for “keeping children safe in education”.

In a statement the school said: “The majority of the areas for improvement identified have now been rectified and trustees, leaders and staff at the institute are continuing to work with rigour, diligence and integrity to ensure that all appropriate standards have been met.

“The institute’s full and unequivocal commitment to fundamental British values has been reaffirmed, and all books in its library are now consistent with these values.

“Systems are in place to ensure that the quality of education and care provided by the institute to its students is of the highest standard and is compliant with all statutory and regulatory requirements.”