Tuesday, 2 December 2014

Birmingham's first Islamic school 'spent £1m of public money on school in Pakistan' per Education News in The Independent

'Council officials in Birmingham are investigating claims that a trust running the city's first-ever Islamic school spent £1 million of public money funding a new school in Pakistan.

The allegations concern the Al-Hijrah school, a voluntary-aided state funded school for four to 18-year-olds which was set up in 1999 and run by a trust.

The school was at the centre of controversy earlier this year when it was placed in special measures after an inspection by education standards watchdog Ofsted declared it to be "inadequate".

An interim board was appointed by Birmingham City Council to run the school after the entire governing body was sacked after it was revealed its budget was £900,000 in the red.  It was initially refused entry to the school by the previous regime running it but has now taken over.

Now it is understood the council is investigating claims that the Trust used public money to help fund a new £1 million boys' only boarding school in the city of Ziarat in Pakistan at a time when the school in Birmingham was in dire need of improvement.

According to the minutes of its meeting in September, it discovered: 14 members of staff were without contracts, seven were still working there even though their contracts had expired and 29 had not had Criminal Record Bureau checks.

"There are a number of teachers with no teacher reference number but receiving qualified teacher salary," they add.'

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