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'This is a fantastic school': Parent supports school amid race row over additional lessons for black pupils
10 July 2023, 11:27 | Updated: 10 July 2023, 12:06
Parent supports school amid race row
As black pupils are given additional literacy lessons on Saturdays at Coldfall Primary School in Muswell Hill, this caller said he supports the "pastoral care" given to the children.
Adam in Muswell Hill called Nick Ferrari at Breakfast to add some context to the story, reported in The Telegraph, explaining that his daughter is a Year 5 pupil at the school.
He said: "This is a fantastic school, supportive, pastoral care, we couldn't be happier with this school."
"There's an incredibly involved parents advisory board, that are involved in all aspects of the school, and they would have been part of any conversation. Obviously, there's one individual who's not happy", he continued.
Adam wanted to "caveat this" by adding that his children are white, adding that the decision for the school to have such lessons would have been made "in consultation with parents", but acknowledged that "you're not going to keep everybody happy".
He praised "how wonderful it is, how inclusive and diverse it is".
Nick then asked why would it appear that "a fair cohort of pupils" were "behind the expected standard in national reading tests last year" and "11 times behind for writing as well in tests".
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His caller replied: "I can only talk for my kids, and you know it might be one particular class, and so I can't identify why that's the case", adding the school is "obviously being proactive in doing something about this", by having the additional literacy lessons.
Nick said: "Sadly the children who are failing the most are the white children currently, for whom these extra lessons are not available", to which his caller replied that these lessons could be providing more information about black history.
"While black history is obviously very important, it's equally important that your child or children reach the expected standard in reading tests isn't it?" Nick asked.
"Yeah, and I can tell you that when they have fallen behind they have been given additional work, additional assistance outside of the class, maybe not in this sort of set time on a Saturday, but that pastoral care has always been given at that school irrelevant of who the child is", Adam responded.
Nick then queried whether the father of three found it "a mistake", clarifying that he "would be saying this if it was the other way round".
"No", Adam answered, reiterating the support that has been given to pupils at the school.