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Education

Tory politician under fire for saying Jewish schools shouldn’t teach homosexuality or atheism

Patrick Kelleher January 23, 2020
Tory councillor Aron Klein

Aron Klein (Hackney Conservatives) and Elly Barnes (Twitter)

Conservatives in Hackney are investigating Tory councillor Aron Klein after he said that Jewish faith schools should remain unregistered so children won’t get “ideas” about homosexuality or atheism.

Klein made the comments after the Hackney Gazette revealed that the local council is struggling to get all local schools registered with Ofsted (Office for Standards in Education, Children’s Services and Skills).

In emails sent to the newspaper, Conservative councillor Klein said: “The Haredi community pride itself with a youth clean and pure from crime.”

Tory councillor Aron Klein said Ofsted-registered schools would give children ‘ideas of atheist, gay, early childhood sex’.

He continued: “The way they do it is a total ban of television at home. Films or video or cinema is totally forbidden as not to give the kids any idea of crime, mischief of any sort.

“Most boys and girls are getting married at around the age of 19 after years of learning in yeshiva to respect your partner.

Why bring in Ofsted to our yeshivas? They give the children ideas of atheist, gay, early childhood sex. We don’t need all this thank you.

“We pride ourselves with a divorce rate of one out of ten.”

He added: “Why bring in Ofsted to our yeshivas? They give the children ideas of atheist, gay, early childhood sex. We don’t need all this thank you.”

In another email, Klein hit out at Hackney mayor Philip Glanville, writing: “I believe he is gay. Good luck to him. No thank you. We don’t want Ofsted coming mixing, confusing our children. For us it’s Adam and Eve. A man and a woman. A boy and a girl.”

Unregistered schools are not held to the same standards.

Klein was elected as a councillor for the Tories in Stamford Hill West with 1,468 votes in 2018.

There are concerns that there are a number of unregistered Jewish faith schools in the Hackney area, meaning schools can avoid being held to the same standards as those that are registered.

Dr Elly Barnes, founder of charity Educate and Celebrate, which works to ensure schools have LGBT+ inclusive curriculums, told the Hackney Gazette that all schools “must adhere to the Equality Act”.

“We would expect there to be no hierarchy of equality between age, disabilities, sex, gender identity, marriage or civil partnership, pregnancy, race or nationality, religion or sexual orientation according to the law of the UK,” she added.

 

More: Aron Klein, Equality Act, Jewish faith schools, Ofsted

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