Stamford Hill Jewish school ‘scribbled out women’s faces in textbooks and barred female Ofsted inspectors from talking to kids’
17:58 17 February 2016
An independent Jewish school in Stamford Hill scribbled out women’s faces in text books and refused to let female Ofsted inspectors speak to children, a highly critical report reveals.
And a second school allowed children to believe the role of women was to “clean the house and cook”, officials found, adding it fell below government requirements.
The Charedi, ultra-orthodox, independent Talmud Torah Yetev Lev school in Cazenove Road was inspected along with nearby Beis Aharon School in Cranwich Road.
A report published by Ofsted on Tuesday found children at Beis Aharon shared a “universal view” that a woman’s role is to “look after children, clean the house and cook”.
The £2,860-a-year fee-paying school, with 347 pupils aged three to 13, failed to promote respect for other faiths as it prioritised the “ethos of its faith over the independent school standards”, the report said.
Meanwhile inspectors found Talmud Torah Yetev Lev Primary School gave “insufficient time” to non-religious subjects with “most lessons [...] taught in Yiddish”.
This impeded pupils’ progress in basic literacy skills and their ability to speak, read and write in English, it was claimed.
The independent all-boys primary school caters for 816 pupils aged two to 12.
Disturbingly, books “where images of females had either been erased or radically changed” were discovered, while teachers refused to let pupils talk to Ofsted’s female inspectors.
The pair of reports come just weeks after a third Orthodox Jewish school in the same neighbourhood was ordered to shut after operating illegally for 40 years.
The Charedi Talmud Torah Tashbar School, also in Stamford Hill, failed to meet the “minimum” standards required by Ofsted.
Ofsted inspectors said its curriculum, taught in Hebrew, encouraged “cultural and ethnic insularity because it is so narrow and almost exclusively rooted in the study of the Torah”.
The Gazette was not immediately able to contact either of the schools.