Denmark: Muslim schools should be banned

There have been several articles recently about Muslim private schools in Copenhagen, following a study which has recently been released.  I will try to translate them in the upcoming few days.  Meanwhile, a suggestion that city schools learn from Muslim private schools has been met with an opposing suggestion from the city's deputy mayor for integration, Jakob Hougaard: to ban Muslim schools entirely.  Hougaard is hereby keeping up with suggestions he had made in the past to make public schools more Muslim-friendly, enabling halal food and giving time off on religious holidays.


Copenhagen's deputy mayor for integration Jakob Hougaard will not accept that public schools should learn from Muslim private schools' good scores.  He thinks the private school law should be changed so that it would be forbidden to set up school for immigrant children.  Jakob Hougaard said this in response to the competition that the city's public schools face from Muslim private schools.

Jakob Hougaard says it is problematic that people can set up private schools whose primary target group are the immigrants and that Denmark publicly supports a school which is unsuitable for integration.  He doesn't think people should be allowed to set up private schools where immigrant children are the primary target group.

In Copenhagen 26% of bilingual kids from non-Western countries go to private school, and a large part go to completely bilingual private school.  According to plans that should be 8%.

Muslim private schools have good scores - taking their student body into consideration - but Hougaard doesn't think that's enough.  Private schools might do well academically, but integration depends on immigrant and Danish children learning and being together.

Private schools continue to present quite a competition for public schools, but he is not willing to accept that Copenhagen should now learn from Muslim private schools.  He thinks it is serious, both in terms of creating a divide and in terms of supporting that some families live without contact with Danish children.

Ayaan Hirsi Ali supports such a ban.  She says it is brave and correct for Hougaard to criticize the schools for harming integration and that therefore the demands from the schools should be intensified, according to newspaper Kristeligt Dagblad

Ayaan Hirsi Ali says that Muslim private school maintain values that go against everything in the country in which the children grow up and in which they will become full citizens.

Hirsi Ali says that kids should go to Koran school on Saturday, but Muslim private schools where they get their basic education and spend so many hours, should be banned.  She thinks that Muslim private schools can be banned and Christian and Jewish schools allowed without there being an issue of discrimination.

Sources: TV2 (Danish), DR (Danish)  h/t Hodja (Danish)

See also: Copenhagen: Taking Muslim schools as an example, Copenhagen: Islam to fill the city

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