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Schools in the UK Are Now Asking Muslim Children to Fill Out “Counter-Extremism”

“Counter Extremism” survey administered to primary school pupils in London

Schools in the UK Are Now Asking Muslim Children to Fill Out “Counter-Extremism”

Over the past couple of days, this photograph of a questionnaire/survey given to primary school children in East London has been widely circulated on social media.

May 27, 2015  by Ananya Rao-Middleton

Statement from the executive head teacher of Buxton school, which is one in a number of schools involved in the pilot programme funded by the European Commission (source: Twitter)

It has been described as a ‘counter-extremism’ survey, consisting of undeniably loaded questions aimed at discerning the religious, ethical and even patriotic beliefs of the children taking part. Worse still, it is evident that this survey is undoubtedly intended for Muslim children primarily, who will continue to undergo interrogation of this kind as part of the new legal obligations upheld by educational institutions, consisting of monitoring potential ‘extremists’, as dictated by the Counter-Terrorism and Security Bill that recently passed in parliament. This survey, and its wider implications of state-sponsored violence and Islamophobia, are disturbing for a number of reasons, however, I want to first focus on what it means to categorise Muslim children as potential ‘extremists’.

To categorise children in such a way is a form of preconceived criminalisation. By categorising Muslim children as potential ‘extremists’, the government can justify violence enacted through laws that essentially treat them as criminals without having to provide any tangible evidence for doing so. In the CTS Bill, this criminalisation is determined by the exhibition of certain behaviours and values displayed by children that the government identify as ‘radical’. These so-called signifiers of ‘extremism’ amongst children appear to be based on symbols of religiousness and increased religiosity. If this is the case, is the government not conflating terrorism with Islam?

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  • War is Peace!
    Oldthinkers unbellyfeel Ingsoc!

  • Reynardine

    That looks like a lotta bull, boy.

  • Reynardine

    My, you’re swift.

  • Reynardine

    ……

  • Jekyll

    Stay safe hun

  • Tanveer Wan Khanobi

    I doubt it really matters. We have the highest ranking Muslim police officer saying that not celebrating Christmas and shunning alcohol somehow warrants putting people under surveillance. We have Cameron saying we quietly condone ISIS and a whole manner of other stupid things which I have thankfully forgotten.

  • moraka

    That is an unintelligent reply, that somehow has completely misunderstood everything i wrote.

  • Lynchpin

    I like venison, it’s a bit deer though.

  • Lynchpin

    Your question is loaded – Britain is not totalitarian. Do you live here?

  • Lynchpin

    I’m not defending the questionnaire, I’m suggesting it might not be a good idea to encourage kids to give dishonest answers.

    If they want to give answers like what you stated on their own accord then so be it, kids will be kids I guess.

  • Lynchpin

    Why would the authorities wish to discriminate against certain children?
    If it could be shown that the children had been encouraged to answer dishonestly, wouldn’t that cause greater harm than any honest answers they give?

  • Lynchpin

    If it was shown that many children had been strongly encouraged to answer dishonestly that would surely cause bigger problems.

  • Razainc_aka_BigBoss

    Yep and I am also suspect of the people who created this test and what metric they use to judge “normal” vs “radical” students

  • Razainc_aka_BigBoss

    I find it strange the weird way they conflate race and religion on question 11.

    A person may be fine with marrying someone of a different racial background but want to marry someone of the same religion.

  • downwithpants

    Why not ask them questions like:
    Have your parents sent you to “camp” in Pakistan?
    Do you enjoy the monkey bars and jumping through fire?
    When answering the phone do your parents say “death to america”
    When we use the term “biological clock”
    Do you think of A. Your own internal clock? Or b. The clock on your biological weapon?
    I know for a fact I would sabotage the test and on the back I would probably write at the top My Plan for Jihad (top secret)
    1. Make infidels think I’m patriotic…..

  • Solid Snake

    This isn’t a something that is being done in good faith. It’s clear that this whole program is built upon suspicion and distrust. This isn’t an honest discussion of issues. Otherwise, school officials would have had meetings with the community discussing whatever issues they deem important instead of doing something like this. I don’t want my kids to live in an atmosphere where they are constantly being questioned to see if they pass a test.

    Sure, they can answer honsetly, but do you seriously think these answers can be used to accurately gauge a person’s potential level of extremism? And from this age?

    People’s beliefs evolve over time. And if this was presented to me and my friends when we were kids you can bet that we would have sabotaged it as well. Not because of ideological reasons but because we were F*!#ing kids, if you wanted to be cool you rebelled against the authorities.

  • moraka

    This raises the question: Is Britain totalitarian because it is a cryptofascist state or because British democracy is totalitarian?

    Name: David Cameron
    Year: 2015
    Gender: Male (though i have my doubts)
    Age: 48
    Which three words best describe who you are?: Tyrant, fascist, imperialist.
    If you needed advice, who would you talk to?: The ghost of Rotha Lintorn-Orman
    How much do you trust people from this group?:
    Muslims – Not at all
    Race/Religion – I hate Muslims and immigrants
    Police officers – Well I do control them
    School teacher – Well I do use them to spy them evil Muslims

    Have the following things happened to you in the past week, either inside or outside of school?
    Being spoken to by your Churchill dildo – Yes it told me to be more totalitarian and intolerant.

    Please tell us your opinion on the following statements:
    People should have freedom of thought – NO!
    People should have freedom of religion – NO!
    People should have freedom of speech – NO!
    People should have freedom of political ideologies – NO!

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