Apartheid tag is wide of the mark

9th October 1998 at 01:00
In a typically misleading statement ("Funding bid for Muslim secondaries", TES, September 25), Birmingham councillor James Hutchings describes discussions about an aided Muslim secondary school in the city as "building apartheid".

This is a wholly inappropriate use of an emotive word, suggesting as it does state-enforced discrimination and separate but unequal development.

Any Muslim school within the state system would offer parents of all faiths and none a choice that doesn't exist at the moment, a choice that increasing numbers are asking for. Nobody would or could be forced to attend such a school, as the word "apartheid" implies, and for Mr Hutchings to say that "social unrest" would result suggests an agenda beyond the usual brief of an education spokesman, even one belonging to the Conservative party.

Come clean Mr Hutchings: if you are against Muslim schools, be honest and say so, but don't try to blame them for the social ills that affect us all.

Ibrahim Hewitt. Development officer. Association of Muslim Schools of United Kingdom and Eire. I Evington Lane, Leicester

Subscribe to get access to the content on this page.

If you are already a Tes/ Tes Scotland subscriber please log in with your username or email address to get full access to our back issues, CPD library and membership plus page.

Not a subscriber? Find out more about our subscription offers.
Subscribe now
Existing subscriber?
Enter subscription number


The guide by your side – ensuring you are always up to date with the latest in education.

Get Tes magazine online and delivered to your door. Stay up to date with the latest research, teacher innovation and insight, plus classroom tips and techniques with a Tes magazine subscription.
With a Tes magazine subscription you get exclusive access to our CPD library. Including our New Teachers’ special for NQTS, Ed Tech, How to Get a Job, Trip Planner, Ed Biz Special and all Tes back issues.

Subscribe now