'Terrifying': James O'Brien on Zahawi's 'no political opinions at school' comment

10 February 2022, 13:00 | Updated: 10 February 2022, 15:09

By Tim Dodd

James O'Brien ridiculed Education Secretary Nadhim Zahawi's "ugly" comment that schools shouldn't encourage pupils to take a view on partygate.

It comes as Education Secretary Nadhim Zahawi has condemned a lesson that took place in a Nottinghamshire primary school where Year 6 pupils were asked to write a letter criticising Prime Minister Boris Johnson.

The letter, written by Year 6 pupils at Welbeck Primary School in the Meadows, Nottingham, branded the Prime Minister a hypocrite and called for his resignation.

Education Secretary Nadhim Zahawi told the Daily Mail: "While there is clear need for children to address political issues in the classroom from time to time, this must not be done in a partisan way."

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James then quoted parts of a child's letter that was written to Labour MP Lilian Greenwood and posted online: "We also looked at people who we respect and disappointingly, our own Prime Minister has not made it onto this list.

"During this past week I watched a story on BBC Newsround that stated our PM is under investigation for 12 parties that have apparently occurred - a few of which had over 100 people at them when we weren't even allowed to meet more than two people."

James continued: "The suggestion seems to be that a 10-year-old couldn't write that. And Nadhim Zahawi is saying that a 10-year-old shouldn't write that - and that is scary. That is really scary."

"A Secretary of State for Education saying that children shouldn't be encouraged to have political opinions is absolutely terrifying.

"You talk about culture wars, you talk about cancelling, you talk about woke."

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