Recent events have convinced the Danish government that it needs to be vigilant and proactive about Islamic radicalism. One of the chosen tools in its new toolbox is to monitor private Islamic schools in Denmark, over the objections of the private schools’ lobbying group.
Needless to say, it doesn’t help that the education minister has compared the institutions in question to Nazi schools. Here’s the story from 180grader, as translated by our Danish correspondent Signe:
Haarder compares Muslim free schools to Nazi ones
Every single Muslim free school [private school with significant state funding] must be checked one more time to determine whether or not it is favourable to freedom and democracy in its teachings. Minister of Education Bertel Haarder’s argument for doing so is that the same spot-check would occur for Nazi schools if such schools were ever to be founded.
“It could be Nazi or autonomous [radical leftist] schools, if such schools were ever to be founded.”
In this way Minister of Education Bertel Haarder argues in Kristeligt Dagblad that 25 Muslim or Catholic free schools must be checked this autumn one more time to find out whether they prepare the students to live in freedom and democracy.
“Subsequent to the government’s proposal to fight extremism it was decided on June that 25 schools should be paid a visit. This is done in order to find tools to apply in countering extremism and supporting freedom and democracy,” says Bertel Haarder.
In the Association of Free Schools [Friskoleforeningen] the extra control is meeting resistance.
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“It will come as a surprise to me if there is a single one of the 22 Muslim schools is not part of control this time around. As an alibi for doing this, they have to find three other schools, which will probably be Catholic schools that have many Muslim pupils,” says Ebbe Lilliendal, chairman of the Association of Free Schools to Kristeligt Dagblad, and he continues:
“The additional inquiry comes after the schools were already subjected to a number of announced and unannounced spot-checks since 2006. The schools are drained of energy every time, and this constant suspicion is a nuisance. What public school has been subjected to the same process?”
Hat tip: TB.