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Topic initiated on Wednesday, March 21, 2012  -  8:01 PM Reply with quote
THe Role of Ofsted

The Role of OFSTED
Education of Bilingual Muslim Children

The new inspection system will have a tighter focus on preparing children for life in multicultural Britain. In my opinion the whole of British education system has been preparing children for a mono-cultural society rather than for life in multicultural Britain. Muslim children have been mis-educated and de-educated by state schools for the last 60 years. The whole world belongs to Muslims. A Muslim is a citizen of this tiny global village. He/she does not want to become notoriously monolingual Brit. He/she must be well versed in Standard English to follow the National Curriculum and go for higher studies and research to serve humanity. At the same time he/she must be well versed in Arabic, Urdu and other community languages to keep in touch with his/her cultural roots and enjoy the beauty of their literature and poetry. A child who has English as a second language is seen as having a special need – not as having a skill to be lauded from the rooftops. Bilingual children think in different way. Language has a profound effect in shaping the ways people think and act. State schools are slaughter houses and are not suitable for bilingual Muslim children. Muslim children in the UK may lose out when they join reception classes because the school’s values and language reflect those of the dominant native culture, rather than those of their. Almost all recent research literature agrees that if you want children whose home language is not English to excel in English –medium schools, it is important to nurture and acknowledge that first language alongside their English development. Cultivating bilingualism could and should promote pupil’s linguistic development. Muslim children need bilingual Muslim teachers as role models.

Ofsted has only blamed Muslim schools for the failure. Students at Muslim schools achieved over 88% A/A* at GCSE. They turn out confident, well adjusted young people who are, in the main, passionate about learning as a lifelong process. Children leave schools with full self-confidence and self-esteem because they do not suffer from institutional racism in Muslim schools. Muslim teachers are true role models for them during their developmental periods.

The right to education in one’s own comfort zone is a fundamental and inalienable human right that should be available to all people irrespective of their ethnicity or religious background. Schools do not belong to state, they belong to parents. It is the parents’ choice to have faith schools for their children. Migrant Muslims are not economic slaves. They are part and parcel of British society with their own cultures, languages and faith. Migrant Muslims need to preserve and transmit their cultural, linguistic and spiritual identities; otherwise, they will be lost in the western jungle. Learning Arabic, Urdu and other community languages do not deter people from integrating. It helps them integrate. British schooling is at war with Migrant Muslims learning Arabic, Urdu and other community languages. Multilingualism should be celebrated because it is an asset but British education regards it as a problem.

We live in a shrunken world and millions of people are on the move; one of our biggest challenges is how we learn to live in proximity to difference – different skin colours, different beliefs and different way of life. According to a study by COMPAS, Muslims born and educated were given the impression of outsiders. The perception among Muslims is that they are unwelcome in Britain is undermining efforts to help them integrate into wider society. Most of them say that they have experienced race discrimination and religious prejudice. Muslims and Islam is promoted a fundamentalist and separatist by the western elite, which have negative impact on community and social cohesion. The number of racist incidents occurring in London Borough of Redbridge’s schools have reached their highest levels since record begin. Racism is the biggest type of bullying at schools in Bradford accounting for 75 per cent of incidents during the last academic year, it has been revealed.

According to recent studies, bilingual Muslim pupils feel unsafe and unwelcome in state or public schools because they are bullied by native children. Anthropologist Laura Gillian from Danish Pedagogic University, who has carried out field work, believes that many minority children feel that they do not belong in their schools. The feeling of alienation, as well as dissatisfaction with the curriculum, has been brewing for a long time with the result that many ethnic groups have started their own private schools. The Manifesto of the Norwegian Terrorist and mass murderer clearly states that in Europe Pakistani Muslims are on the increase because of migration and high birth rate and one day they are going to demand the Pakistan of Europe. When he was in school, he was afraid of a Pakistani gang. He is afraid of popularity of Islam and revertion of Europeans.

Community cohesion has failed because there is a negative experience of mutual understanding and cooperation between the hostile host community and Muslim community. A report by the Institute for Community Cohesion found that native parents were deserting some schools after finding their children outnumbered by pupils from ethnic minorities. Schools in parts of England are becoming increasingly segregated. The study focused on 13 local authorities. Many of the schools and colleges are segregated and this was generally worsening over recent years. This is RACISM because British society is the home of institutional racism. Muslim children need Muslim teachers during their developmental periods. For higher studies and research, Muslim teacher is not a priority.

There are good grounds for believing that linguistic and intercultural competence are more important than ever in preparation for global citizenship and for life in multicultural societies. In this context, community languages represent a valuable resource for individual and society and yet they have been marginalised in British education system. There has been a failure to locate them within language and literacy policies and to recognise links to inclusion, community cohesion and citizenship. According to a French political sociologist, Muslims in Europe feel that they are not welcome. Inspite of official initiative, a significant minority see institutional racism across the board. Blatant racism exists in parts of the world of work. Religious intolerance is “the new racism” and one of the main causes of persecution of minorities. Terrorism efforts and economic marginalisation are increasingly being associated with religion, not ethnicity. In my opinion, British schooling has been producing Muslim youths with anger, extremism and frustration. Muslim children are confused because they are being educated in a wrong place at a wrong time in state schools with non-Muslim monolingual teachers. They face lots of problems of growing up in two distinctive cultural traditions and value systems, which may come into conflict over issues such as the role of women in the society, and adherence to religious and cultural traditions. The conflicting demands made by home and schools on behaviour, loyalties and obligations can be a source of psychological conflict and tension in Muslim youngsters. There are also the issues of racial prejudice and discrimination to deal with, in education and employment. They have been victim of racism and bullying in all walks of life. British schooling and the British society is the home of institutional racism. BNP, EDL and all other main political parties are the true photo of the racist British society. Why not NATO and all the other WATCH DOGS group impose sanction on England, for not doing anything to tackle the racism in their Country. These so-called organisations can interfere with the Middle East Countries, to rape the people of their OIL! But can’t do anything about the racism and exploitation of minority groups in England. When these societies oppress some groups, and unleash the monster then, and the people retaliate, then they call them terrorist! Need some serious pro-action instead of reaction. According to DFE, 56% of Pakistanis and 54% of Bangladeshi children has been victims of bullies. The first wave of Muslim migrants were happy to send their children to state schools, thinking their children would get a much better education. Than little by little, the overt and covert discrimination in the system turned them off. There are fifteen areas where Muslim parents find themselves offended by state schools. The British teachers have no respect for Islamic faith and Muslim community. Western education system can easily deprogram Muslim children and force them to adopt un-Islamic values. Let the Muslim parents decides how and where to educate their children. According to MORI social research institute on behalf of Bristol LEA, nine out of ten Muslim parents agreed with the model of an Islamic secondary school set up within the state system. I rejected British schooling for Muslim children in the early 70s. I have been campaigning for state funded Muslim schools since then. I set up the first Muslim school in London in 1981. At the time of 9/11, there were only 54 schools and now there are more than168 full time Muslim schools and more are in the pipe lines. Only 12 Muslim schools are state funded. According to a report, the majority of Islamist terrorists in the UK are British born and educated is under the age of 30, well educated and likely to be employed. Most terrorism in Britain is committed by home-grown terrorists. Britain’s fight against terrorism has been a disaster. It has alienated Muslim youths. The campaign has targeted non-violent Muslims and branded them as supporters of violence. Britain remains under severe risk from terror attacks. The government policy had made the task of the police harder by alienating Muslim youths. The staffs at Gendale Primary in Pollokshield, where Muslim children are in majority, are being asked to look for signs of radicalisation. It is an increibly worrying development. We cannot have a culture of teachers spying on Muslim children as young as five. Racism is very ripe in Scottish schools and society. Muslim and other minority children has been victim of racism in all walks of life. LAs and schools are trying their best to hide this issue under the carpet. Hardly anybody was convicted or imprisoned by the Authorities. What do you expect from Muslim youths when they have been victim of racism throughout their development periods? Now Muslim youths are victim of terrorism. Thousands of them are being searched in streets and hundreds of them are behind the bar without any trials.

Bilingualism can help pupils' all-round education and should be encouraged. Children who know an “eastern” as well as a “western” language are more academically able than others. With the pace at which the world interacts today, multi-lingualism is a step forward. Almost all recent research literature agrees that if you want children whose home language is not English to excel in English –medium schools, it is important to nurture and acknowledge that first language alongside their English development. Cultivating bilingualism could and should promote pupil’s linguistic development. Muslim community feels that state schools with non-Muslim monolingual teachers are not suitable for bilingual Muslim children. The number of Muslim schools is on the increase and I believe that by 2020 there will be more than 500 Muslim schools. Muslim schools give young children self-confidence and self-esteem in who they are and an understanding of Islamic teaching of tolerance and respect which prepares them for a positive and fulfilling role in society. According to a study by ioe, putting children in classes with a range of minority children does not necessarily lead to improved race relation. Native children become less tolerant of minority classmates after being overtaken by them in lessons. It seems that minorities are only accepted by majority pupils if they stay in a subordinate position. Minorities may not be perceived as a threat when they are struggling to succeed, but as they increase their status and become more adept at finding their way in society, this seems to change. There are hundreds of state schools where Muslim children are in majority. In my opinion, all such schools may be opted out as Muslim Academies. Muslim schools protect Muslim children from the onslaught of Euro-centrism, homosexuality, racism, binge drinking, drug addiction, incivility, anti-social behavior, teenage pregnancies and abortions and secular traditions. Muslim schools made pupils aware of their future role as proactive British Muslims and left them well prepared for life in a multicultural society. Under British education system, Muslim children will distance themselves from their culture, languages and faith. There is nothing left but their beautiful Muslim names.

English is one of the most damaging subject, reflects secular and immoral beliefs that contradict the viewpoint of Islam. Romeo and Juliet of Shakespare advocates disobeying parents and premarital relations. Most people know English as a language, perhaps as a global language. Now English has become an industry, according to Ahmar Mahboob from the University of Sydney. There are a range of commercial, economic, and industrial interests that are affiliated to it. It is these interests that we will call 'industry'. English language relates to the interests of corporations and governments, who use the language to make money and to promote certain beliefs and practices. As English was (and is) learnt in many parts of the world as an additional language, the learners need teachers, teaching material, and language tests, etc. This need for teachers and material has led to a development of a large number of local, national, and multinational corporations that train and produce these human and material resources. Speaking English does not promote integration into British, American and Australian societies, and broaden opportunities. English speaking Muslim youths are angry, frustrated and extremist, thanks to English language. English language is not only a lingua franca but also lingua frankensteinia. Human right is also covers linguistic right. Cultural and linguistic genocide are very common. English is today the world killer language. Linguistic genocide is a crime against humanity and British schooling is guilty of committing this crime.

Official figures show that almost one million pupils speak English as a second language but British schooling has been accused of making them notoriously monolingual Brits. The teachers even discourage children to speak their languages at schools. The teachers do not teach them Standard English. The children learn local English accent in playground and in street. British schooling is also responsible for turning away bilingual migrant children from their mother tongues. It does not encourage or provide facilities for the teaching and learning of their languages. There is a positive co-relation between British schooling and Aborigines Protection Act. It enabled to remove children from their parents and to place them in institutions so that they could forget their cultural roots and languages. British schooling has been anglocising Muslim children and they find themselves cut off from their cultural heritage and languages. Teaching profession does not like Muslim children attending Masajid in the evening or at weekends to learn the Holy Quran, Arabic, Urdu and other community languages. Even full time Muslim schools have been classified as “Osama bin Laden Academies” by Nasuwt Teaching Union. Majority of anti-Muslim stories are not about terrorism but about Muslim culture--the hijab, Muslim schools, family life and religiosity. Muslims in the west ought to be recognised as a western community, not as an alien culture.

The present structure of OFSTED is not in a position to inspect Muslim schools properly. There is a dire need for bilingual Muslim Inspectors. Non-Muslim monolingual Inspectors are not in a position to inspect Muslim schools with bilingual Muslim children. OFSTED should employ bilingual Muslim inspectors for the inspection who should not only be well versed in English, Arabic, Urdu and other community languages but also in sciences and humanities. Muslim girl schools should be inspected by Muslim ladies inspectors. They must make sure that Bilingual Muslims children have a right, to be taught their culture, languages and faith alongside a mainstream curriculum.
Bilingual Muslim children need to learn and be well versed in Standard English to follow the National Curriculum and go for higher studies and research to serve humanity. The problem is that they learn English in the streets and in the playgrounds. British schooling does not teach English to migrant children. The teachers let them speak the same accent in the classroom. They have no courage to stop them or correct them. This is one of the main reasons why one third of children have difficulties with reading when they leave primary schools. Majority of such children are bilingual Muslims. They often speak "street" with its own grammar, vocabulary and pronunciation. In other European countries and in the sub-continent argot and slang are not allowed into the classrooms. In Britain primary school teachers do not feel that it's role to interfere with self-expression in any shape or form. They encourage children to read poems and stories written in ethnic dialects. Bilingual Muslim teachers are in a better position to teach English to their children.
Iftikhar Ahmad

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