Tuesday, July 3, 2007

Multiculturalism and faith schools a recipe for disaster

"Multiculturalism may seem a liberal policy, but it reinforces prejudices. [...] While any society will always have its fair share of bigots, we also found that governmental multiculturalism made the problem worse. By arguing that all groups in society should be allowed to live according to their own beliefs and customs, they were encouraging people to see themselves as different from one another. And not just a little bit different, but fundamentally different. So it fostered a them-and-us attitude to politics.


parallels that can reasonably be made between Britain and the Netherlands, particularly in regard to faith schools. "The Dutch always pursued a segregated education policy of different schools for Protestants and Catholics," he points out, "and it seemed obvious for them to apply the same principles for Muslims.
"Yet the evidence proves this hasn't worked. The biggest predictor of integration and social mobility in the Netherlands is the ability to speak Dutch, and kids at Muslim schools are not learning the language as well as students in other schools. The result is that second-generation Muslim immigrants are actually becoming worse off than their parents, a situation that can only cause more problems. And if the British government continues to promote faith schools, it could well find itself in a similar predicament."

Guardian, July 3, 2007

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