UK: Faith schools 'help foster terrorists'

Faith schools that encourage religious segregation were today accused of laying the ground for terrorism.


Professor David Canter, director of the Centre for Investigative Psychology at the University of Liverpool, told a conference in the city about his study of convicted Islamic terrorists, their lives and beliefs.


His critique came as the government unveiled 47 new academies, a third of them religious in character.


Although Canter stressed he was not against all faith schools, only those that preached strict adherence to a particular religion such as Pakistan's Islamic madrasas, he said there was "no doubt" that religious segregation contributed to terrorism in Northern Ireland.


His views are likely to be seized on by the growing number of opponents to the government's drive to promote faith schools in England.


His research was carried out in India where 49 convicted Islamist terrorists were interviewed in their native language. Far from being motivated by deprivation or being ignorant pawns, they were inspired by spiritual belief and attachment to a particular social group. Most of the terrorists were educated and intelligent.


Canter said: "I have to say, and this is a personal point of view, that issues like faith schools are terribly dangerous.


"Setting up these divisions based on faith and religion is the starting point for people thinking of themselves as separate and distinct and part of some out-group."


(more)


Source: Guardian (English)

1 comment:

Unknown said...

Faith schools that encourage religious segregation are sowing the seeds of terrorism, a leading expert claimed. Spiritual belief and attachment to a particular social group provided the two most important pathways into the world of terror, said Prof Canter. The research also showed that far from being ignorant "pawns" or mentally disturbed, most terrorists were educated and intelligent.
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