Ofsted does not have anti-faith bias, says its chief inspector

JEWISH educational groups are disappointed with Ofsted chief inspector Amanda Spielman’s defence of her organisation’s stance against charedi schools.

Addressing the Policy Exchange think-tank this week, she hit out at parents who taught their children values different from those of the National Curriculum.

She said: “The acceptance of the equal rights of women or of gay rights may not fit with the views a child hears at home.

“No wonder, therefore, that some young people feel torn between different identities.”

She denied that Ofsted was engaged in a “secularist plot”, as had been claimed by governors at Stamford Hill’s Yesodeh Hatorah Senior Girls’ School.

She said: “The suggestion that Ofsted has an anti-faith bias is simply not true and does not fit the profile of our judgements.”

A spokesman for the chassidic Torah Education Committee said: “As expected, no change. However, we are lobbying with the aim of achieving that the government redirect Ofsted.”

A Partnership for Jewish Schools spokesman said: “We are currently working with Ofsted to find a pathway for schools to be compliant without compromising their religious ethos.

“We had hoped that the ability to do this would have been more strongly mentioned by Amanda in her speech.”

After meeting Ms Spielman this week, Chief Rabbi Ephraim Mirvis tweeted: “It is essential that we urgently make real progress in repairing the relationship between Ofsted and the charedi community.”

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