Document launched that is aimed at safeguarding thousands of children at Muslim religious schools (From Bradford Telegraph and Argus)
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Document launched that is aimed at safeguarding thousands of children at Muslim religious schools
4:39pm Thursday 21st March 2013 in News
A document aimed at safeguarding the estimated 9,000 children who attend Muslim religious schools in the district was unveiled yesterday.
Bradford Council for Mosques, Bradford Safeguarding Children Board, NSPCC, and West Yorkshire Police worked together over the last 12 months to produce Children Do Matter.
The study looks at issues including child protection, staff recruitment, bad practice and child abuse.
Mohammed Mushtaq, president of the Council of Mosques, told a meeting at Bradford City Hall that this was the latest example of district leading the way for Britain’s muslim community.
He said: “Our unique strength is our inclusivity and this is a very positive and courageous step by the community. I hope it will be seen in a positive light by all concerned.”
Mohammed Rafiq Sehgal, the senior vice-president of Council For Mosques Bradford and the chairman of its safeguarding working group, said: “The report pulls together feedback from those who manage our faith institutions and those who work in these and parents.
“It is an uncompromising and honest account.
“I hope that messages and suggestion contained in the report will be taken seriously and acted upon by those concerned.”
The study was started in 2011, after religious teacher Sabir Hussain, 60, was sentenced to ten weeks in prison for assaulting pupils at the Markazi Jamia Mosque in Lawkholme, Keighle.
The key conclusions of the report include: l Religious schools must stipulate the need for Criminal Records Bureau checks.
l There should be a register of all teachers and others at the schools.
l Parents should be more involved.
l Learning should be structured.
l Women should have greater involvement in the schools.
l There should be openness to counter prejudiced ideas of secrecy within the schools.