Ofsted was accused of “political correctness” after downgrading a top rural primary school for effectively being too English.The education watchdog faced a backlash from MPs and parents following the decision to penalise Middle Rasen primary in Lincolnshire for not having enough black or Asian pupils.In a report, inspectors said the school was “not yet outstanding” because pupils’ cultural development was limited by a “lack of first-hand experience of the diverse make up of modern British society”.The move followed a shake-up of Ofsted inspections introduced in the wake of the “Trojan Horse” plot in Birmingham to impose hard-line Muslim values in state schools.Schools are now told to place fundamental British values at the heart of the timetable including mutual respect and tolerance of different faiths and beliefs. [Didact: Apparently no one in the British political or educational establishment has sufficient schooling, wit, or intelligence to understand what the word "oxymoron" means.]But the reforms have already been criticised for having a knock-on effect on faith schools and those dominated by pupils of a particular ethnic group.Last month, it was claimed that a small Christian school in the Home Counties had been penalised after failing to other invite faith leaders, such as imams, in to lead assemblies.Commenting on the latest case, Sir Edward Leigh, the Conservative MP for Gainsborough, said he had written to Nicky Morgan, the Education Secretary, “objecting strenuously to the new so-called 'equality' regulations she is implementing in schools”.He added: “This is political correctness gone mad. Middle Rasen primary school is an outstanding school by any standards.“Multiculturalism is an irrelevance in Lincolnshire with its low number of ethnic minorities, who are already welcomed and well-integrated into our local communities, as they should be."The community primary school, which is based in the picturesque rural town of Market Rasen, has just 104 pupils aged four to 11.It was handed a “satisfactory” rating during its last inspection in December 2012.The latest report upgraded the school to “good” – the second highest mark – for making significant improvements, with staff creating an “environment in which learning flourishes".But the primary missed out on the "outstanding" grade for occasionally failing to set difficult work and giving staff few opportunities to improve their skills. In a key move, it was also downgraded for limiting pupils’ “first-hand experience” of modern society.The report said: "The large majority of pupils are white British. Very few are from other ethnic groups, and currently no pupils speak English as an additional language."The school needs to extend pupils' understanding of the cultural diversity of modern British Society by creating opportunities for them to have first-hand interaction with their counterparts from different backgrounds beyond the immediate vicinity.”The school is now attempting to strike up a partnership with an inner city school to address the concerns.Melonie Brunton, the head teacher, said school trips usually involved visits to the countryside, taking in farms and zoos, but it had recently focused on outings to a mosque and factory.Ofsted’s comments were criticised by parents.Jodie Miller, 35, whose six-year-old daughter attends the school, said: "We are a small rural community in Lincolnshire, there just aren't many children here from different backgrounds."The staff can't just wander the streets forcing people to come and attend.”Benjamin Bannan, 33, a father-of-two, added: "It’s outrageous that a British school can be punished for being too British. It just doesn't make sense at all."We would welcome people from different cultures with open arms I'm sure - but there just aren't any ethnic minorities around here."Reverend Charles Patrick, who was head of the governors at the time of the report, said: "This is a rural area, like 80 per cent of the country, we don't have many non-white residents."Perhaps it would be a different matter if we were in the middle of London or Manchester or something."Ofsted denied that it was downgraded for one reason.“The report highlights a small number of areas where the school should look to improve,” a spokesman said. “It was not denied an 'outstanding' judgement solely because of pupils’ cultural development.“All schools must teach pupils about fundamental British values including mutual respect and tolerance of those with different faiths and beliefs. That way they will be prepared for the future wherever they go.”
For these dangerous and divisive elements the legislation proposed in the Race Relations Bill is the very pabulum they need to flourish. Here is the means of showing that the immigrant communities can organise to consolidate their members, to agitate and campaign against their fellow citizens, and to overawe and dominate the rest with the legal weapons which the ignorant and the ill-informed have provided. As I look ahead, I am filled with foreboding; like the Roman, I seem to see "the River Tiber foaming with much blood."
That tragic and intractable phenomenon which we watch with horror on the other side of the Atlantic but which there is interwoven with the history and existence of the States itself, is coming upon us here by our own volition and our own neglect. Indeed, it has all but come. In numerical terms, it will be of American proportions long before the end of the century.
Only resolute and urgent action will avert it even now. Whether there will be the public will to demand and obtain that action, I do not know. All I know is that to see, and not to speak, would be the great betrayal."