Jamiatul Ummah School In East London Fails Ofsted Inspection Over Books 'Promoting Stoning People To Death'

20/01/2016 17:21 | Updated 20 January 2016

A Muslim school in east London has failed an Ofsted inspection after investigators found books in its library that promote "inequality of women and punishments, including stoning to death".

Inspectors found "inappropriate texts" in the Jamiatul Ummah School's library during a "very brief" tour, uncovering three books that "undermine the active promotion of the rule of British law and respect for other people".

The books, an Ofsted report released this month, said: "Promote inequality of women and punishments, including stoning to death, which are illegal in Britain and which do not reflect the school's ethos and integration."

jamiatul ummah

Ofsted found three books 'promoting stoning people to death' at Jamiatul Ummah School in east London

The unannounced investigation at the Tower Hamlets school, which teaches 158 boys aged 11 to 16, was carried out on 25 November, and is the third inspection it has failed since October 2014.

The watchdog was at the all-boys private secondary school - which has annual fees of £3,400 - to assess what progress it had made in implementing an action plan to correct problems it had earlier identified. This was the second assessment.

In March 2015 inspectors found that seven of the independent school standards were not being met. The school had subsequently provided a plan to remedy the concerns, which Ofsted accepted in October 2015.

According to the Ofsted report, the school library was primarily used by sixth-form students until July 2015, but had remained closed since.

The report stated: "Although current students do not have access to the inappropriate material, past students did for some time and others will if the library is reopened and a full audit is not undertaken. In addition, the library is used for meetings, exposing participants to the material."

Ofsted noted an audit of "outdated, irrelevant or unsuitable material" had since been started by the Interim Principal. However, the report added that staff "have not been sufficiently vigilant about the availability of inappropriate texts in the library or sufficiently aware of the potential for unwittingly promoting extreme views".

Ofsted found that the standard concerning students' "spiritual, moral social and cultural development" was not met, because of the presence of the books: "This is because students' well-developed understanding of fundamental British values and tolerance of different cultures and beliefs could be undermined by some of the books that are in the library."

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Despite the presence of the books, inspectors noted that they had found "no evidence to support the promotion of extremist views or radicalisation of students or staff" at the school. In fact, it found students and staff presented "well-informed and positive views" about the role of British Muslims and their responsibilities with the local community.

The school has said it condemns "all forms of extremism unequivocally and this is recognised by Ofsted".

The Huffington Post UK was unable to reach the school for comment, but a spokesperson told MailOnline: "We recognise the concerns raised by Ofsted in respect of three books in the library, however, as Ofsted rightly noted, the library is locked and current students have no access to it.

"Ofsted also recognised that the content of these books, 'do not reflect the schools ethos of tolerance and integration'.

"Nevertheless, we are taking steps, and are at present auditing all materials in the library and those available within the school."

A previous Ofsted inspection at the school in October 2014 found the "curriculum was too narrow", the "assessment framework was not systematic or effective across all subjects" and "students did not develop a broad knowledge of cultures and faiths other than their own".

A report January 2015 identified "concerns about students welfare have not been recorded systematically or thoroughly", the school’s behaviour policy had not been "implemented effectively" and that the science room "poses risks to the welfare, health and safety of students, staff and visitors".

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