Fears that “Church of England” schools may become widespread.
Schools across Britain are likely to have been targeted in an alleged Christian plot to take over classrooms, head teachers warned yesterday.
The National Association of Head Teachers (NAHT) said it had found “concerted efforts” to infiltrate at least 4,500 schools across England, with 25% of all primary schools and 6% of all secondary schools found to be “C of E”.
The Oracle understands that there are growing concerns about the possible infiltration of schools in Bradford, Manchester, London, Liverpool – and indeed every city in England, not to mention many towns and villages.
The acknowledgement from the professional body follows a series of exposés by The Oracle which disclosed how a “Trojan Hypocrite” plot had put schools under pressure to “attend Christian services, regardless of religion”, and to change teaching to reflect radical Christian beliefs.
Yesterday, Ofsted confirmed that its investigation had spread to a total 1 million children across the country.
In a statement, the head teacher’s association said attempts had been made to “alter their character in line with the Christian faith”, including sidelining parts of the curriculum and attempting to influence the appointment of Christian staff.
Lessons such as Religious Education have been compromised by attempts to introduce overt Christian ideology into everyday life, such as prayers to “God” in morning assemblies, the singing of “hymns”, and regular trips to local churches at Christian holidays.
It is the first time a major teachers’ organisation has confirmed that such concerns exist. The plot involves the alleged takeover of state schools and the removal of secular head teachers by Christian staff and governors.
An inspection report by the Department for Education, leaked to The Oracle, found that boys and girls were forced to sit together “to discourage unnatural sexuality”, syllabuses were “restricted to comply with a conservative Christian teaching”, and on several times preachers were invited to speak to children.
Last week it emerged that Joshua Watson, the alleged creator of these “C of E schools”, wrote a detailed blueprint for the “Christianisation” of state schools in 1811.
Since then, reports show, Church of England schools have been funded by the taxpayer despite the fact that many places are awarded solely on whether the child attends church or not.
Pupils of other faiths, or of no faith at all, have reported feeling “bullied and sidelined” by Christian teachers and pupils, with many feeling that a Christian-leaning education restricts freedom of speech and expression of non-religious idiosyncrasies.
Areas of “collective concern” included “pressure” on heads to adopt “certain philosophies and approaches” over the appointment of teachers, Russell Hobby, General Secretary of the NAHT, said yesterday.
In a few cases, schools risked “eroding the basic entitlement of children to a rounded education by focusing on Christian ideology”, he added.
Mr Hobby will cover the issue in a keynote speech to the conference today.
He will say “schools should not be places for indoctrination in any creed or ideology, political or religious.”