[Update at end of post]
When it comes to playing the victim, the right-leaning press likes nothing better than to scare readers into thinking that Christianity itself is under attack, and, worse, under attack from those who should be its most fervent supporters - the Government and its agencies. Thus it is that both the Mail and Telegraph have looked at two Free Schools that received seriously bad Ofsted reports and concluded that it was down to Political Correctness.
Yes, "Oiky", more of your legacy
“Shut down, Christian school under attack because pupil did not know what a Muslim was: Inspectors brand it educational failure” thundered the Mail, after Durham Free School was deemed so bad that its funding agreement was terminated. The article left readers in no doubt as to what they should think: “Pupils at a Christian school have been branded bigots after a young boy gave the wrong answer when asked what a Muslim was”.
And there was another Christian school under attack: “A second Christian school in the area has been put into special measures. Inspectors also concluded its children were intolerant after allegedly asking ten-year-old pupils what lesbians ‘did’. Teachers at Grindon Hall Christian School in Sunderland said the critical Ofsted report came as a shock because it was performing well”. The Tel was on the same page.
“Grindon Hall Christian School has already accused Ofsted inspectors of adopting a ‘hostile’ stance towards its faith status after they allegedly questioned 10-year-old children about lesbian sex. On Tuesday the school published Ofsted’s findings, which downgraded it to ‘inadequate’ from last year’s ranking of ‘requires improvement’”. So what might be to blame for this unfortunate turn of events?
The Mail knew: “There are claims that some schools – mainly those with a religious ethos or in areas with few ethnic minority pupils – have been put under undue pressure by a requirement to promote British values”. And so did the Tel: “New ‘British Values’ rules are to blame for a Christian school with good exam results being placed into special measures, its headteacher has claimed”. And to that I call bullshit.
I can be certain, as the Grindon Hall Christian School Ofsted report is freely available, and contains this damning assessment: “In accordance with section 44 of the Education Act 2005 (as amended), Her Majesty’s Chief Inspector is of the opinion that this school requires special measures because it is failing to give its pupils an acceptable standard of education and the persons responsible for leading, managing or governing the school are not demonstrating the capacity to secure the necessary improvement in the school”.
In other words, it has sweet jack to do with knowing what a Muslim is, or about lesbian sex. As to the Durham Free School, Zelo Street covered that even more dismal Ofsted report the other day. The school scored “inadequate” across the board. It was not good enough to remain open. To pretend otherwise is equally not good enough.
But the Mail and Telegraph have frightened their readers, so that’s all right, then.
[UPDATE 1810 hours: to illustrate the attitude of the Free School supporting ideologues, into this debate has stumbled the loathsome Toby Young, who might have thought that his endorsement by Retweet of a Facebook post protesting against the closure of Durham Free School might go unnoticed. It has not.
"An open letter to Nicky Morgan from a pupil at the Durham Free School" can be seen to have received Tobes' blessing, an action that typifies Free School supporters. If Ofsted go into a local authority school and find it wanting, there is not so much as a peep from them. But declare a Free School not up to the job, and there must be some kind of mistake.
Ofsted's report into Durham Free School was detailed and comprehensive, unlike the highly selective press coverage. The
school will close, because it was judged "inadequate" across the board, and
with little prospect of improvement.
Tobes should consider himself lucky that, on this occasion, it seems those rotten local authority schools will have sufficient places to take the pupils involved. And he would be best advised to read that Ofsted report first, before blaming anyone else
To see how how much worse it could get if our tabloid media keep misinforming their audience see the video embedded within the link:
Mediaite @Mediaite · 9 hrs 9 hours ago
Jon Stewart Mocks Fox Apologies: ‘How Bad Does Bullsh*t Have to Smell…’ http://bit.ly/1JbyVO6 (VIDEO)
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