Parents refuse children permission to visit mosque.

A school in Rawmarsh has postponed a planned educational visit to a Mosque - because a number of parents didn't want their children to go.

A school in Rawmarsh has been forced to postpone their visit to a Mosque - after a number of parents didn't give permission for their children to go.

St Joseph's Primary had originally planned to go to to Madi Jamia Masjid Mosque this time last week.  

Sheena's not letting her children take part - because she says she fears for their safety after the recent CSE scandal:

"Well there's all these paedophiles about isn't there? And what's to say someone's not going to bomb them?

"They do it to their own quick enough." 

A spokesperson for the mosque said:

"At the end of the day I appreciate they have concerns but you can't smear everyone with the same brush. 

"The school visits are something that we have done for many years and we support the schools in Rotherham wherever possible. We can't be held responsible for concerns people may have with other things that are happening, and it's very sad to tarnish our mosque with the crimes of others. 
"Parents are entitled to an opinion but that shouldn't be based on stereotyping people in our community."

St Joseph Catholic Primary School’s Head teacher Louise Pink said: “The visit has been postponed to enable alternative arrangements to be made for those children who will now not be attending the visit. The visit will take place later in the term. I am happy to meet with any parents who have concerns about their children attending to allay any fears they may have, but I can reassure them that this is a positive visit which will be beneficial to the children’s education.

“The visit to the mosque is being arranged as part of the current study of Islam and supports what we have been learning in the classroom. Catholic schools are open to pupils of all faiths and there are many opportunities for pupils to learn about other faiths and traditions throughout the curriculum.”

Ian Thomas, Rotherham Borough Council’s Strategic Director for Children & Young People’s Services, said:  “School visits are an important part of pupils’ learning and as such we fully support the school in arranging this visit, which can only serve to complement the children’s classroom studies.  Safeguarding issues are considered on all school visits as a matter of course, and the council works closely with schools to ensure its safeguarding polices are up-to-date and are being implemented.

“However, in addressing the concerns of some parents we must be clear that the perpetrators of child sexual exploitation come from all backgrounds - the evidence shows that.  This form of abuse is not confined to a particular religion, or race, and it is it dangerous to take a narrow view on this within our communities.  

“We understand that parents will have concerns around the issue of child sexual exploitation, and about how issues of ethnicity featured in the findings of the Jay Report.  But as a council we must now lead our community to recover – this means we won’t shy away from issues of religion or race when they need to be addressed, but nor can we leave unchallenged the view that children are at risk from a whole community, by virtue of their ethnicity or religion alone.  We urge the community to do the same.”

A representative from the Diocese of Hallam said: “The position of Catholic schools is very clear; Pope Benedict XVI said ‘Together with all people of good will, we aspire to peace. That is why I insist once again: interreligious and intercultural research and dialogue are not an option but a vital need for our time.’ Therefore religious education including education about all major world faiths, is at the heart of our schools. Catholic schools include pupils of all faiths and there are many opportunities for pupils to learn about other faiths and traditions throughout the curriculum, which builds on the commitment of the Catholic Church to dialogue, tolerance and understanding.”


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