Sept 11, 2017
Some UK teachers are too frightened — too frightened — to discuss 9/11 with their students because they fear a backlash from Muslim students and parents, says a counter-extremism education expert.
The UK Telegraph reports that Kamal Hanif, executive principal of Waverley Education Foundation and advisor to the Department for Education on combating counter-extremism in schools, said that some teachers — particularly those with a high proportion of Muslim students — see the September 11, 2001 terrorist attacks as a risky topic for classroom discussion.
“Teachers sometimes have a fear that this might be controversial,” he said. “[They think] if we teach about this we might get Muslim parents objecting.” Really? I’m shocked, shocked.
But Hanif, who is also a trustee for the educational charity Since 9/11, which provides free teaching resources about the attacks and their aftermath, said that this fear among teachers “is not really grounded in anything. It is based on their stereotypical view of a community as opposed to the reality. It is very misplaced. It is an assumption.” I don’t know what Hanif’s motive is in downplaying this fear, but I suspect the teachers’ concerns are legitimate and based on their everyday experience with these students.
Sir Steve Lancashire, the chief executive of a multi-academy trust which which is distributing the 9/11 materials to its 55 primary schools, said many teachers feel “uncomfortable” about the subject. “Teachers don’t feel well equipped on facts – there are a lot of conspiracy theories, a lot of misinformation,” he said.
Lancashire said teachers are scared they will be accused of Islamophobia by their students. “It’s children saying ‘You are attacking Muslims, you are attacking our faith,’ that kind of thing,” he said. So what? Stand united in the truth.
Lord Nash, the…