Thursday, October 26, 2006

Labour Climbs Down Over Faith Schools

So the Government has climbed down over its proposals to force faith schools to select 25% of their pupils from non believers or other faith backgrounds. That policy lasted, er, all of about a week. Surely some sort of record even for this lot?

UPDATE: Alan Johnson is losing a lot of credibility in his bid to become Leader Deputy Leader of the Labour Party. The Daily has more HERE.


Anonymous said...

The gimmicky Labour headline grab is the reality.

Classic Bliar, classic Labour regime.

Anonymous said...

Actually, this makes perfect sense.

Consider the shambles of the education system; everyone getting straight 'A's and no-one "failing".

Now there are schools that provide a reasonable education; faith schools, grammars and, by and large, the independent sector.

Why would NuLab want to ensure MORE children get a good education when they've spent so long and so much money on ensuring that most kids can't even read and write (let along spell, punctuate and add up) when they leave the sixth form with all their 'A' levels

youdontknowme said...

it was a bad idea anyway

James Higham said...

How could it ever have been enforced? Really!

The Stoat said...

Can't say I'm surprised. Daft idea in the first place.

Anonymous said...

So my grandson won't get the chance to go to a muslim school?
I'm devastated!

Ralph Lucas said...

A nice demonstration of the power of the Catholic church. Ken Baker and allies (me included) have been jumped on with hobnailed boots. I know just how Johnson and Adonis feel.

Haven't seen the full text of the agreement yet - I'm not rushing to know the full extent of our beating.

Anonymous said...

It was one of the single stupidest ideas I have ever heard and it is a measure of how much I dislike this government that I wanted them to try to do it .

Quite obviously the point was to suck up to the betrayed working class by picking on about 3 Mooslim schools ( Like the Burqa farce) .To this cynical end they were prepared to undermine the only part of the educational system that works?

How is it possible that something can have been thought through so badly .You wonder sometimes if legislation shouldn`t start in the house of Lords and pass serenely through the commons for a bit of off hand Punch and Judy when its all decided.

Its also annoying for rendering my last update ,out of date already.

C`est La vie. Quelle Dommage um ... thats my modern languages there whdjafink?

Anonymous said...

Ralph Lucas - The power of the Catholic Church? The Catholic Church has power in the Labour government? This is interesting news! Tell us more!

Or does one think, rather, that actual British citizens with a vote and an MP, have told their MPs, to bugger off out of their religious life? Do you think indigenous British voters have said it will be an extremely chilly day in hell before their child is forced to be "educated" by a murderous cult?

And do you think that the parents of children in normal, Christian and Jewish, faith schools, might have said 'we will not admit children whose first reference in life has been to a murderous cult'?

Ralph Lucas - I think you are a bit of a fantasist if you think the RC Church has any power to sway opinion in Great Britain.

Anonymous said...

Actually it is rather interesting that this happened after the meeting with Bishop Nichols. Having had the honour of hearing him preach many times, I am well aware of his intelligence, and the ability to get right to the heart of the matter in an extremely subtle manner.

My son attends a secondary Church school and I can tell you I would have an awful lot to say about it should Labour push this crap thru. Not only do we regularly go to Mass but we are involved in every aspect of parish life - why should my son and other like him lose his place to those who do not?

It makes my blood boil and it is even more upsetting that Cameron is going along with this.

Anonymous said...

Was Ken Baker taking the piss?

The Remittance Man said...

The time for setting every school free from the bonds of idiotic state fads is upon us.

School vouchers now!

Anonymous said...

This week the Mail had an article headlined

"Catholic church threatens to take away voters over faith school quotas" It then went on to explain there could be a couple of million votes at stake.

Collapse of stout party.

Anonymous said...

Don't forget that by the next General Election some of our Eastern European immigrants will have become UK citizens and got votes. The are not all Russian Orthodox you know.

Peter Smallbone said...

This has been such a rapid reversal that I don't think the phrase 'U-turn' does it justice.

Anyone got any better suggestions? 'I-turn'?

Anonymous said...

It is quite a u-turn. Maybe you could make a series of these articles, perhaps starting with why you think the majority of Conservative MEPs voted in favour of joining the Euro yesterday (see ConservativeHome)?

Anonymous said...

Ralph Lucas is deluded if he thought that this ludicrous idea would ever work, and batty to conclude that it was Catholicism that killed it.

Anonymous said...

This isn't a is a rethink.

What sort of idiot thinks this is a Catholic church move and exercise of their power? Catholic schools, which I attended, have always had a mix pupils, though perhaps not 25%. The Catholic church has always been more tolerant.

Now if you had said that this shows the power of the muslims...then I might agree. How many muslim schools will take 25% and also accomodate other faiths? This would be the end of muslim only teaching schools.

Why should faith schools take a quota when that faith actively works to better the school? Let the Government raise more tax and pay more if they want to pontificate (ô¿ô)

This was an unworkable policy, and the new labour tossers knew it, but was an eye catching initiative wasn't it?

AnyonebutBlair said...

As behopper says I was thinking of sending both my sons to a muslims school and now I can't...I'm devastated. I know the queue from the local jewish community for the muslim school was also substantial.

Anonymous said...

Anyone who thinks the Church of england has faith schools should visit Bradford city centre where most C of E primaries are Muslim with a few token Whites who are not Christian................the Church of England is a brand rather like Yves St Laurent where in the US is is as likely to adorn toilet paper as belts and underwear

Anonymous said...

You really have to ask yourself what goes through the minds of some of these idiots in nulab's so-called government. They couldn't legislate the skin off a rice pudding.

Anonymous said...

I was at a Labour Students event last week and tipped off The Daily about comments made by Johnson. He said that he was against faith schools but he wouldn't be doing anything about them because it would lose the Labour party votes and be seen as an attack on Muslims and religion. Fairly extraordinary comments. Click on the link for the full story.

Anonymous said...

How about just banning faith schools and educating people that religions are humbug peddled by conmen who want to sponge and rule?

Anonymous said...

It was obviously my question to Widdy on 18 DS wot done it!

Anonymous said...

It would appear we have entered the "Headless Chicken" stage of this NuLabor terminally ill government.
We have bold, sometimes sensible, but mostly just headline grabbing policy statements one day.
Only to find out in the small print the following day -
1 They didn't really mean what we thought they ment.
2 There is no definate dateline for implementation.
3 Nor is there any actual extra money allocated for these policies.
4 It's another smoke & mirror act. But what the NuLabor twats have not cottoned onto is that the winds of change are blowing the smoke away, and we can see how empty their cupboard is.
The sooner this lot are put out of their misery the happier I will be.
As for the latest expense claims, three words - pigs, snouts, troughs.

Anonymous said...

Postie got a tartan knife in his back, then?

Johnny Norfolk said...

You either have faith schools or you dont. More labour muddle again.

They are not happy now are they, as they have to stand on their own 2 feet and can't blame the Tories.

How they have ANY support is amazing.

The Remittance Man said...

How about this for a thought?

The Blairs avoid sending their spawn to bog standard comps by using Cherry's catholicism to bump them into Brompton Oratory.

There is at least one sprog which still needs to complete its education. Methinks Cherry belatedly realised the implications of Johnson's wizard scheme and leant on hubby to get the whole thing shelved until Leo finishes school.

Anonymous said...

Postman Pat is losing credibility. According to Iain Dale, neither Gordon Brown nor John Reid will make it as PM. Does this mean we're stuck with Tony until the next election?
Personally, I never thought Johnson had much credibility in the first place.

Boss said...

God bless Lord Baker and his proposed re-tabled amendment. Fight the faith!

Ralph Lucas said...

As far as Catholic power is concerned, I only report as I observe - and I've been close to the point at which that power has been directed. Verity is right that the power has been applied though the network of schools and churches, rather than directly, but the motive force has been central, and accompanied by much bombast which is why so many of you seem concerned at the effect on exisiting state schools - which was zero, since only new schools were affected.

Now that I've had a chance to see what has been agreed, I'm a lot happier than I was. In fact, I suspect I will end up totally happy with the outcome. The RCs have lined up alongside the CofE's voluntary agreement, which I applaud, and we have an excellent cross party amendment from lords Alton (the main RC spokesman in the Lords) and Ahmed (ditto Muslim) with Conservative support, that puts a duty on school governors to promote community cohesion, and allows it to be enforced if Ofsted says it's not being complied with.

So a good result - but an unreasonably bloody route to get there.

GaffaUK said...

I have no problem with faith schools except that they should not be state funded. Why should the taxpayer paid for a third of schools to indoctrinate schoolkids with creation myths and the like? We should have a seperation of state and religion. If you don't want free education then you should have the liberty to set up or/and send your children to your faith school of choice - be it Christian, Muslim or Klingon.

Anonymous said...


I do pay for my son's faith school - through my taxes. I am sick of the tired argument by people like you that they are a 'gift' from state. MY taxes spent they way I approve has ensured that my son is getting a top class education, with discipline and boundaries. Would abolishing faith schools do anything to fix the bog standard comprehensive schools that I refused to send my son to? I rather think not.

David Lindsay said...

We have just lived through one of the most significant weeks in British politics for a very long time.

Look at the list of Honorary Associates of the National Secular Society. It is clearly the most establishmentarian organisation in the English-speaking world. And that is quite a feat. No doubt it is therefore also one of the richest voluntary bodies in Britain. Again, that is no mean achievement. Meanwhile, we all know about the BBC.

Such people look at the Catholic school system and see their own worst nightmare. Catholic congregations are now replete with first and second-generation university graduates whose parents have never paid a school fee in their lives. What is more, the Catholic community is concentrated in Scotland, the North, the Midlands, and the working-class parts of London.

Yet from such redoubts, previously treated as if they were on the moon by Everyone Who Matters, these jumped-up oiks have now had the audacity to exercise political influence. And they have done so precisely to defend the very institutions that produced them in the first place. Yet, on top of everything else, those institutions have a higher than average ethnic mix, and a long history both of educating and of employing people with Irish surnames.

Where will it all end?

Well, for one thing, the penny might drop that General Elections are not won and lost in the South East. If they were, then there would now be a Tory Government with a large majority. The Tories first nearly and then actually lost office by losing first many and then most of their seats in Scotland, Wales, the North and the Midlands. Their failure to recapture those seats has been their failure to recapture office. Meanwhile, they took back in 2005 most of their 1997 losses in the South East. But so what?

Oh, things are certainly not as they were even only a fortnight ago...