Trojan Horse row Q&A: What is the 'Muslim plot' all about – and why is it so important?

 

Q: What is the Birmingham “Trojan Horse” investigation?

A: It stems from a letter purporting to outline “Operation Trojan Horse” whereby a group of fundamentalist Muslims were plotting a take-over of city schools. It is widely seen as a fake - but thought to come from someone who had an inkling of what was going on and wanted to draw attention of it.

Q: What action was taken on receipt of the document? 

A: Several inquiries were set in motion. Ofsted, the school inspectorate, went into 21 schools where a takeover was taking place. Education Secretary Michael Gove appointed the former head of the anti-terrorist branch at the Metropolitan police Peter Clarke to carry out an inquiry. The Education Funding Agency - responsible for funding schools - has investigated the affair and Birmingham City Council is publishing a review of the situation next month. The West Midlands police is investigating the allegations, too.

Q: Where are we at now?

A: Ofsted is due to publish its 21 inspection reports on Monday. Six of the 21 schools are to be declared inadequate (one was already rated inadequate before the investigation started. Twelve are to be sent notices saying their governance requires improvement. Five of those to be declared inadequate are Golden Hillock, Park View and Nansen primary school - all academies and members of the Park View Education Trust, Oldknow - a primary school - and Saltley.

The Education Funding Agency will also publish its report - which is expected to find that, in the case of Oldknow, classrooms had been segregated with girls sitting behind boys. It records that anti-Christian chants were encouraged in Muslim-based assemblies and that Christmas events were cancelled while no Muslim pupils were not invited to join a school trip to Mecca. The school is said to be consulting lawyers over the report. The Ofsted report on Golden Hillock school said its pupils did not have enough protection from extremist views. The Park View Education Trust has rejected the findings on each of its schools - adding that the inspectors found no examples of extremist indoctrination at any of them.

Q: What will happen as a result of these inquiries?

A: Education Secretary Michael Gove is expected to make a statement on Monday afternoon dismissing the governing bodies of five schools being declared inadequate - and banning any governors involved in a plot to turn their school into a hard-line Muslim faith school from holding office again. He is said to have found new sponsors prepared to take over the running of the academies concerned. Further action, possibly to curb Birmingham City Council’s role in running schools, is likely to be taken after the publication of the Clark report.

Read more: May ‘breached ministerial code’ in feud with Gove
If you want to stop extremism in schools, try a little understanding

 

PROMOTED VIDEO
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
News
ebookA unique anthology of reporting and analysis of a crucial period of history
Life and Style
Upright, everything’s all right (to a point): remaining on one’s feet has its health benefits – though in moderation
HealthIf sitting is bad for your health, what happens when you stay on your feet for a whole month?
News
Kristen Stewart and Rupert Sanders were pictured embracing in 2012
people
News
President Obama, one of the more enthusiastic users of the fist bump
scienceBumping fists rather than shaking hands could reduce the spread of infectious diseases, it is claimed
Sport
Laura Trott with her gold
Commonwealth Games
Arts and Entertainment
Gal Gadot as Wonder Woman
arts + ents
News
Bryan had a bracelet given to him by his late father stolen during the raid
people
Arts and Entertainment
Chris Pratt stars in Guardians of the Galaxy
arts + ents
Arts and Entertainment
Pedro Pascal gives a weird look at the camera in the blooper reel
arts + entsPrince Oberyn nearly sets himself on fire with a flaming torch
News
Danny Nickerson, 6, has received 15,000 cards and presents from well-wishers around the world
newsDanny loves to see his name on paper, so his mother put out a request for cards - it went viral
Sport
France striker Loic Remy
sportThe QPR striker flew to Boston earlier in the week to complete deal
News
Orville and Keith Harris. He covered up his condition by getting people to read out scripts to him
People
Arts and Entertainment
Zoe Saldana stars in this summer's big hope Guardians of the Galaxy
filmHollywood's summer blockbusters are no longer money-spinners
Arts and Entertainment
O'Shaughnessy pictured at the Unicorn Theatre in London
tvFiona O'Shaughnessy explains where she ends and her strange and wonderful character begins
Life and Style
Workers in Seattle are paid 100 times as much as workers in Bangladesh
fashionSeattle company lets customers create their own clothes, then click 'buy' and wait for delivery
Independent
Travel Shop
the manor
Up to 70% off luxury travel
on city breaks Find out more
santorini
Up to 70% off luxury travel
on chic beach resorts Find out more
sardina foodie
Up to 70% off luxury travel
on country retreats Find out more
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

iJobs Job Widget
iJobs Education

Chemistry Teacher

£90 - £162 per day: Randstad Education Hull: Randstad Education are looking fo...

SEN Teaching Assistant Runcorn

£50 per day: Randstad Education Cheshire: SEN Teaching Assistant EBD , Septemb...

Teaching Assistant

Negotiable: Randstad Education Group: Outstanding Teaching Assistants needed f...

Primary Teacher EYFS, KS1 and KS2

£85 - £130 per day: Randstad Education Preston: Randstad Education are urgentl...

Day In a Page

A new Russian revolution: Cracks start to appear in Putin’s Kremlin power bloc

A new Russian revolution

Cracks start to appear in Putin’s Kremlin power bloc
Eugene de Kock: Apartheid’s sadistic killer that his country cannot forgive

Apartheid’s sadistic killer that his country cannot forgive

The debate rages in South Africa over whether Eugene de Kock should ever be released from jail
Standing my ground: If sitting is bad for your health, what happens when you stay on your feet for a whole month?

Standing my ground

If sitting is bad for your health, what happens when you stay on your feet for a whole month?
Commonwealth Games 2014: Dai Greene prays for chance to rebuild after injury agony

Greene prays for chance to rebuild after injury agony

Welsh hurdler was World, European and Commonwealth champion, but then the injuries crept in
Israel-Gaza conflict: Secret report helps Israelis to hide facts

Patrick Cockburn: Secret report helps Israel to hide facts

The slickness of Israel's spokesmen is rooted in directions set down by pollster Frank Luntz
The man who dared to go on holiday

The man who dared to go on holiday

New York's mayor has taken a vacation - in a nation that has still to enforce paid leave, it caused quite a stir, reports Rupert Cornwell
Best comedians: How the professionals go about their funny business, from Sarah Millican to Marcus Brigstocke

Best comedians: How the professionals go about their funny business

For all those wanting to know how stand-ups keep standing, here are some of the best moments
The Guest List 2014: Forget the Man Booker longlist, Literary Editor Katy Guest offers her alternative picks

The Guest List 2014

Forget the Man Booker longlist, Literary Editor Katy Guest offers her alternative picks
Jokes on Hollywood: 'With comedy film audiences shrinking, it’s time to move on'

Jokes on Hollywood

With comedy film audiences shrinking, it’s time to move on
It's the best of British art... but not all is on display

It's the best of British art... but not all is on display

Voted for by the British public, the artworks on Art Everywhere posters may be the only place where they can be seen
Critic claims 'I was the inspiration for Blanche DuBois'

Critic claims 'I was the inspiration for Blanche DuBois'

Blanche Marvin reveals how Tennessee Williams used her name and an off-the-cuff remark to create an iconic character
Sometimes it's hard to be a literary novelist

Sometimes it's hard to be a literary novelist

Websites offering your ebooks for nothing is only the latest disrespect the modern writer is subjected to, says DJ Taylor
Edinburgh Fringe 2014: The comedy highlights, from Bridget Christie to Jack Dee

Edinburgh Fringe 2014

The comedy highlights, from Bridget Christie to Jack Dee
Dame Jenny Abramsky: 'We have to rethink. If not, museums and parks will close'

Dame Jenny Abramsky: 'We have to rethink. If not, museums and parks will close'

The woman stepping down as chair of the Heritage Lottery Fund is worried