LETTER : Continuing value of religious education in our schools

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From Mr Muhammad Usamah

Sir: Polly Toynbee, while correctly arguing that Muslims deserve equal treatment, panders to the myth that Muslim schools "educate children to believe women are of inferior status", and are responsible for "the repression of young girls".

Muslim schools teach the Islamic viewpoint that women are not inferior to men, and that women and girls must not be repressed, a message that may not always be clear in British culture, let alone the culture of their parents.

Perhaps Ms Toynbee should visit the Islamia Girls' School. She may then realise that one of the reasons why "fear and loathing of Islam is approaching Cold War proportions" is because of its widespread misrepresentation.

Yours faithfully,

Muhammad Usamah

Muslim Educational Trust

London, N4

14 February