Al Jazeera

Radicalisation monitoring software for schools lists Muslim activists as extremists

School children in the UK who search for words such as ‘caliphate’ and the names of Muslim political activists on classroom computers risk being flagged up as potential supporters of terrorism by monitoring software being marketed to teachers to help them spot students at risk of radicalisation.

[academyschools.blog.gov.uk]

[academyschools.blog.gov.uk]

The radicalisation keywords library has been developed by software company Impero as an add-on to its existing Education Pro digital classroom management tool to help schools comply with new duties requiring them to monitor children for extremism as part of the government’s Prevent counter-terrorism strategy.

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Al Jazeera

Toddlers targeted by UK ‘1984’-style anti-terror laws

Childcare workers in the UK are being encouraged to play the music of Freddie Mercury to babies and toddlers in their care in order to demonstrate their compliance with anti-terrorism laws requiring them to “actively promote British values”.

freddie mercury

Flying the flag for ‘British values’: Freddie Mercury was born Farrokh Bulsara in Zanzibar in 1946.

The suggestion can be found on an advice page for childminders published by an influential childcare website to help them fulfil new regulations introduced this month as part of the government’s controversial Prevent counter-terrorism strategy.

The requirements, which also affect nurseries and schools, place a statutory duty on childcare providers to report children who they believe may be susceptible to “radicalisation and extremism”, prompting some to liken the situation to ‘1984’, George Orwell’s novel about a totalitarian surveillance state.

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Al Jazeera

Call for Israeli academic boycott stokes SOAS campus divisions

London, United Kingdom – Student leaders at the UK’s School of Oriental and African Studies (SOAS) are set to call on the university to cut its academic links with Israeli institutions in a show of support for the Palestinian-led Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions (BDS) movement.

SOAS [Simon Hooper]

SOAS has a reputation for student activism and progressive politics [Simon Hooper]

SOAS student union officials will make their case at a meeting of the school’s governing body on Friday and will point to the result of a ballot of students, academics, and staff in February, in which 73 percent voted in favour of a boycott of Israeli universities.

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Al Jazeera

Counter-terrorism in the classroom: Teachers ‘spying on students’

London, United Kingdom – Teachers have claimed that they are being pressured to spy on their own students because of new counter-terrorism laws which they say risk scapegoating Muslim school children and stifling discussion of controversial issues in the classroom.

[academyschools.blog.gov.uk]

[academyschools.blog.gov.uk]

Delegates attending this week’s conference of the National Union of Teachers (NUT), the UK’s largest union of school staff, voted in favour of a motion criticising the government’s anti-radicalisation strategy, known as Prevent, after hearing that teachers were being used as “front-line stormtroopers” to monitor students for signs of extremism.

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Al Jazeera

British Muslims complain of ‘Trojan Horse’ witch-hunt

London, England — The UK government is facing accusations of demonising Muslims and playing politics with children’s futures over its tough response to reports of an alleged Islamist plot, dubbed ‘Trojan Horse’, to take over schools in the English city of Birmingham.

Michael Wilshaw, the UK's top schools inspector, said Park View was doing "fantastically well" on a visit  to the school in 2012 [http://www.pvet.co.uk/]

Michael Wilshaw, the UK’s top schools inspector, said Park View was doing “fantastically well” on a visit to the school in 2012 [http://www.pvet.co.uk/]

Representatives of Muslim organisations and communities affected by the controversy, which was triggered by what is now widely regarded as a discredited leaked document, warned that the government was fuelling Islamophobia following publication this week of a series of critical reports into the schools under scrutiny.

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