Episode 7 The Big Questions


Episode 7

Nicky Campbell presents topical debate from Leicester Grammar School. Should all Islamic State returnees to Britain be punished? Should schools select exclusively by faith?


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Transcript


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Today on The Big Questions...

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What to do with returnees

from Islamic State?

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And schools - should

they be able to pick

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their pupils from one religion?

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Good morning, I'm Nicky Campbell,

welcome to The Big Questions.

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Today we're live from Leicester

Grammar School in Leicester.

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Welcome, everybody,

to The Big Questions.

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Yesterday was the third anniversary

of the three Bethnal Green

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schoolgirls - Amira,

Shamima and Kadiza - running away

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to join Isis in Syria.

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Two were just 15 and one was 16.

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Kadiza is thought to have

died in an air strike

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while trying to escape in 2016.

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The whereabouts of the

other two is unknown.

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And earlier this week,

the capture of two surviving

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so-called "Beatles" -

Londoners who carried

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out many executions

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for so-called Islamic State,

led to a diplomatic row

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between the UK and

the United States.

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The American Defence Secretary ruled

out sending them to Guantanamo Bay,

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saying they should be tried

in their country of origin.

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But Britain's Defence Secretary,

Gavin Williamson, said they should

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not be allowed to return to Britain

to face trial.

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They should pay the price

for their crimes in Syria.

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Yet the number of foreign fighters

returning home poses a real threat

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to the safety of the UK and Europe,

according to Jane's Terrorism

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and Insurgency Centre,

because they'll be returning skilled

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in the use of weapons like armed

drones, IEDs and the industrialised

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manufacture of car bombs.

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So, what should be done about them?

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Should all IS returnees

to Britain be punished?

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Henna Rai, good morning. So the

girls from Bethnal Green, what

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happened to the other two? We know

that Kadiza is dead.

We have no

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idea, winner of the Intel is limited

but we know their fate will not have

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been dissimilar to what Kadiza ended

up going through, how she was killed

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trying to escape.

It was a teenage

fantasy.

It was, it is a difficult

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one because I don't look at these

girls different to any victims of

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child exploitation. One of them, to

correct you, was 14 going on 15 out

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of the three, I cannot remember

exactly which one, but one was 14.

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At that age, when they should have

been fantasising about I don't know,

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Zayn Malik...

That's what it was, a

teenage adolescent fantasy, an

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Islamic warrior with a six-pack.

I

don't think it was even the notion

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of the guy being an Islamic warrior,

this was a man, a boy, a 20

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something -year-old with a six pack,

with biceps, extremely attractive,

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talking to these young girls and

telling them what they wanted to

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hear. These girls were going through

hormonal changes, there's a lot of

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issues, internal issues going on,

GCSEs, family rebellion, whatever.

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They must have known what was going

on.

I think the naivete would have

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stepped in because when you are

young and impressionable teenager

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and someone is telling you how

beautiful you are, you are

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beautiful, I'm going to make you my

queen, you will have servants at

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your beck and call, you will be my

princess, giving them in effect an

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Islamic Disneyland or notion of

living in the kingdom where they

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would be the ruler and they would be

given exactly what they wanted, and

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being coerced into making that

choice.

Having personal autonomy

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perhaps for the first time.

Absolutely because Kadiza's sister,

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after the news came that she was

killed, said Kadiza never made any

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choices in her life, all of the

choices were made for her, whether

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it was her clothes, what she ate,

what schooling she received,

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watching watched on television, this

was the only choice is she ever made

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and it was the wrong choice. That is

what we have seen happening here.

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It's no different to the girls in

Rochdale who ended up falling for

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the charms of these people, whether

it was online or in person.

Does

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this apply to the young boys who go

as well?

To some extent because the

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same manner of grooming takes place.

Do you have any sympathy at all,

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Macer Gifford?

No because Islamic

State from the very beginning has

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been decapitating people, it has

been butchering the people of Syria,

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it's made its views on everything

from Jews... Everything.

They don't

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talk about decapitating. You cannot

say a 14-year-old can groom

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themselves. Girls are

impressionable.

Do not compare these

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young ladies who sought out

extremist material, watched online

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people having their heads cut off

and agreed with that, they allowed

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themselves.

Did they see that

material?

They all did.

No, it is

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disingenuous for you to make this

accusation because these girls were

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groomed on the basis of love and

affection.

Did they watch the

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mainstream media?

We don't know

that. I feel they may have seen some

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aliments of what was happening but a

lot of Muslim girls we have spoken

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to, people like Mike colleagues have

spoken to, have likened this to an

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Islamic Disneyland where they will

be afforded rights. The manner in

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which these girls are groomed is we

are giving you rights to do what you

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want, you will be in charge here,

you will be playing the role and you

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have an important is for us. Giving

those girls a sense of importance

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and belonging is how...

And being

wanted. Nicola, your son was killed

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in a drone strike, which was awful

for your family. Was he given a

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sense of importance and belonging?

Absolutely, he was sold a lie. What

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he was sold was the fact that if you

are good Muslim, not just a Muslim

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but a good Muslim, this is the

journey you have to make and that's

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why he gave up all of his family,

who he loved very dearly, and

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decided to be a really good Muslim

because that's ultimately as a faith

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tells us that I should do this and

this is what will take me to

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paradise. It was also the lifestyle

that they sold to him, this utopian

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lifestyle. Even when he was in

contact in Syria, she was in regular

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contact with me once he went out

there after a couple of months and I

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would call it even a honeymoon

period. He was very much sold in the

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part where he felt these were his

brothers, that they were looking

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after him well. Until the reality

set in.

Who became a fighter, didn't

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he?

Yes, but he was very ill

equipped.

What was he doing

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initially?

He was put in the camp

for about 64 days, initially they

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put him in for 30 days but this I

understand he was kept in their

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longer because what I've heard is

they couldn't break him. But we have

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kind of almost brought him up too

well and they were finding it

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difficult to get him to buy into

what they wanted him to carry out.

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When they finally released him, then

he was just in civilian life but

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then after several weeks...

Working

in the bureaucracy there?

Just

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generally helping out day to day. It

was after some weeks, then they just

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wanted, again it was about numbers

and they just sent him out to fight.

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He was sent out fighting for several

weeks and when he came back, I was

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preparing myself psychologically and

emotionally for a desensitisation,

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for him to be detached. What I found

was when he came back he was in fact

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very clingy to me. In fact when he

called me come he never wanted my

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voice to go off the call, he wanted

my voice to be the last one he

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heard.

Why didn't he know about the

true nature of this organisation,

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the rape and torture, the genocide?

Did he not believe that stuff?

There

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was so much media out there, the

coverage and images we saw, but you

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have to understand, this ideology,

the way they recruit them, they

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teach them, what you are hearing in

the media is fake news, it is a

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conspiracy, the Government is making

this up against you.

They must have

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seen the beheading videos on

television.

That is much later on.

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Was he an enemy incompetent?

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Was he an enemy incompetent? --

incombatant.

I didn't understand

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what he had been sold, he had gone

in this dream.

An innocent abroad,

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you reckon? Just tell everyone, you

were a British volunteer who fought

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ISIS.

I find it so frustrating they

were joining Islamic State as

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victims.

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victims. Their work Yazidi girls

being sold into slavery, journalists

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having their heads cut off. Your son

and the others we were talking

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about, they watched this on the

news. We all did and I was moved to

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fight against them, your son was

moved to fight for them. You cannot

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compare poor young girls who come

from disadvantaged backgrounds and

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who are abused by abusers to those

young girls that sort out extremist

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material, they watched the news as

we all did, and agreed with what

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they were watching and allowed

themselves to be groomed. I agree in

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some respects, the young girls did

get groomed, they were seeking

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something, but at the end of the day

it was them

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it was them that sought it out.

When

you are told a lie you tend to

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believe it, especially at an age

when you are impressionable and

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being able to make a choice, what we

need to understand here, these girls

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were not allowed to make choices in

their home lives.

Do you think once

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they saw the material...

This is

what their families have said.

You

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have picked up mobile phones and

seen the footage and it is

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unspeakable, isn't it?

I was talking

to a friend of mine recently, in the

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past we have always tried to

dehumanise the enemy, but ISIS have

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dehumanised themselves. They want us

to know they are a death cult.

I

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don't disagree with that at all.

With your son of seeing that,

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Nicola?

Absolutely, when he came

back from fighting he was very

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clingy towards me and it was in that

week, we had contact for about a

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week, and in that period he was on

the phone every single day. There

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was something softer... He was

beginning to see grey again. Very

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much the mentality is they see this

black and white, yes and no, right

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and wrong.

So critical thinking was

creeping back in. What should happen

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to these people?

My concern is

relieve them to the authorities in

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Syria, it is so fractured and out

there, I wouldn't trust the Syrian

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people to bring them to justice.

Nobody in this room once these ISIS

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fighters to be brought to justice

more than I. I lost my only son so

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nobody in this room can declare they

want them to be brought as much as I

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do.

APPLAUSE

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do.

APPLAUSE.

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Tom, what should happen to them?

These are people who have betrayed

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their country...

Are they traitors?

Absolutely, they have gone to join

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the force that has committed

unspeakable atrocities and many when

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they arrive burn their passport and

denounce this country. They are not

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British any more in any meaningful

sense and have no right to come back

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to this country. You cannot denounce

this country then claimed the right

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and the privilege to come back and

live here. So often this

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conversation ends up being about the

right of the returnees, the right of

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terrorists essentially, and we are

at the risk of having our commitment

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to rights being used against us, by

people who believe in an ideology

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that doesn't believe in human rights

at all, that would like to kill as

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many people in this country as they

can. I think this conversation has

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to begin as a starting point by

thinking about the rights of the

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vast majority of people in this

country, the rights of people not to

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be blown up at a music concert.

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Those situations take place by

people who have been groomed within

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the country and remain within our

borders...

So we don't need any more

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of them?

Doesn't it show the

difficulty the Government has, we

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need to distinguish between those

who were naive, those who...

That is

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one of the things you try to do?

Sorry, Jonathan, I will come back to

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you, but when you say Sifton

distinguished, that is right on what

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Lynn does, if you will forgive me.

How do you stop people from coming

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back who have a supremacist,

Islamist ideology that we are

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inferior human beings? And also they

believe that we should be killed.

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How do you change that? Adult people

do change, but before that I would

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like to go back to the idea of

making distinctions within the

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people who come back.

Our values are

the search for evidence about what

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has happened. By law in this country

there is no offence by law as being

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a terrorist, we do not convict on

thought crime. About these people

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have made their choice. We do not

convict on what people believe or

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ideology in this country. For things

to happen to people there has to be

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evidence and a whole raft of

measures which will be put in place.

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They may go to court or there might

be other measures. We had to look at

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people differently and look at the

possibilities of reintegration, that

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will be the best thing to do.

And it

is possible.

We have had a research

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programme in ConnectFutures looking

at interviewing former extremists

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and their families about why they

went out, why they came back. We

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have made a series of films which we

use with young people, training in

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schools. We also have some former

extremists talking live to young

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people. Young people are engaged

with this and it is the most

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powerful messages to young people

about understanding the grey areas.

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But it takes ten years...

What

happens when people start to change,

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when they realise...

This is a cult,

it takes ten years to deprogrammed

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somebody from a cold.

Oh, no.

We had

an example of somebody from

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Birmingham who fought in

Afghanistan...

To be completely

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clear, it takes ten years?

It can be

less. It can happen during the

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actual time. Looking at examples

like someone who fought in Bosnia

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and Afghanistan in the 90s, during

the time he was there he began the

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critical thinking process, seeing

areas of grave. Now he has come

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back. When he came back he began the

actual de-radicalisation process.

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Became normal again. It is my

understanding with some of these

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interviews that have taken place

that some of these people express

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great sadness at unnecessary death,

but it was sadness at the

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unnecessary death, as they saw it,

of fellow Sidnei Muslims, not at

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Yazidis, not Coptic Christians, not

Western aid workers. -- of fellow

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Sunni Muslims. They were

disillusioned with not the ideology

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but the way the state was being run.

On another level you see

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Scientologists leaving Scientology

but still believing in it. That is

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the problem you have?

I don't deny

that and I am not saying but former

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extremists will have renounced the

ideology, necessarily. With the man

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that you mentioned, you might still

believe in the caliphate that you

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renounce violence as a means to get

their ads you are using the

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experience...

Some people have gone

through the de-radicalisation

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process and have still committed

terror attacks. People lost their

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lives in Australia because of

somebody who went through a

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de-radicalisation process and kills

people. You have no right to play

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Russian roulette with public safety.

We will put them on trial, after

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there is not the evidence to get the

proper conviction. You have seen the

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idea that you can put them under

surveillance, security services are

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not infallible and in 2017 we had

Manchester, London Bridge and

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Westminster Bridge carried out by

individuals known to the

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authorities, under surveillance.

People have lost their lives. You

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have to but the British public

first.

The London Bridge was not

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committed by somebody who had been

out.

Neither was Manchester.

They

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were people known to the

authorities. In the case of London

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Bridge he was a live investigated

case. What about the 7/7 bombings

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carried out by people trained in

Pakistan? What about the Bataclan

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bombings?

But clearly they would be

a useful resource when it comes to

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intelligence?

How do you know who is

really a useful resource and he was

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not?

By talking to them, and you can

only do that if they are here.

If

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you shut down the opportunity

immediately you will never get them.

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What would you like to happen to

them?

Of course they ought to be

0:19:580:20:03

brought to justice and put on trial,

but they should not come back here,

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that should be the prerequisite. If

you trade your country you should

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never come back. That must be sent

to people in the country, that

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message, when the next Islamic State

whatever comes along. If you go out

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there, we will not welcome you back.

Bring them to justice in another

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country. One of the Beatles was

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convicted in Turkey and is currently

serving a prison sentence that.

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Other European fighters have been

put on trial in Iraq. We can debate

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that and what should happen, but the

starting point is the British public

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is put first and we do not need to

live among them.

Can we not call

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them the Beatles?! The Beatles were

four Greg Clark from Liverpool. Call

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them the four halfwits or the four

delusional Axel -- delusionals.

I am

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with you, it is like that ghastly

phrase Jihadi John. Let's ask the

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audience. You mention is on trial in

Syria, that will not take a long

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time. Is it the Hague, which will

take a long time? Isn't this

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country, which will be very

different, the bar of evidence, you

0:21:160:21:19

cannot be convicted for ideology. Or

should we just give them a ticket to

0:21:190:21:25

Guantanamo Bay? Quick thoughts.

As

an LGBT rights activist I am

0:21:250:21:30

sickened by people trying to

defence, however young or naively,

0:21:300:21:34

people who go to be part of an

organisation that checks gay men off

0:21:340:21:39

the top of buildings.

APPLAUSE

0:21:390:21:41

Having said that I think we should

live up to a British liberal values,

0:21:410:21:44

they should be brought here,

sentenced and sent to prison.

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APPLAUSE

We should withhold the very thing we

0:21:480:21:52

are fighting for, our liberal

values? Over there, good morning.

I

0:21:520:21:59

agree with that gentleman over

there.

What should happen to them?

0:21:590:22:05

Going through my head is the fact

that this country some years ago

0:22:050:22:09

took a decision to abolish capital

punishment. One of the things that

0:22:090:22:12

worries about me -- worries me about

the debate going on here is that we

0:22:120:22:17

could be condemning British citizens

to capital punishment where they are

0:22:170:22:21

held. It is a sign of our liberal

values that we should insist they

0:22:210:22:24

come back here and face trial.

We

should not condemn them in the way

0:22:240:22:28

they condemn their victims?

Precisely so. We have gone to a good

0:22:280:22:33

deal of trouble to avoid British

citizens being subject to capital

0:22:330:22:36

punishment in countries they are

written. There was a young man, they

0:22:360:22:41

try to extradite him to the States,

he could have faced the death

0:22:410:22:44

penalty. We have set our face

against capital punishment. I do not

0:22:440:22:50

think we should engage in a

situation where we condemn our

0:22:500:22:54

citizens and what we think of them

to death in another country. I agree

0:22:540:22:59

that they should be brought back

here and subject to our values and

0:22:590:23:03

standards and our trials, that is

what makes as the country we are.

0:23:030:23:05

APPLAUSE

We have not had you, Rabia Bhatti.

0:23:050:23:12

When you hear about a drone strike

and one of these people getting

0:23:120:23:15

killed, how do you feel?

I feel

upset. Loss of life, anywhere,

0:23:150:23:21

anyhow, is deeply upsetting. But

these people made a choice to lead

0:23:210:23:25

this country, to denounce Britain,

to go and fight with Islamic State

0:23:250:23:30

and kill other people. If we allow

them back into this country, I don't

0:23:300:23:34

want to wake up on a Sunday morning,

go shopping with my family

0:23:340:23:46

go shopping with my family and be

the victim of a terror attack which

0:23:460:23:48

would devastate hundreds of

thousands of civilians for no fault

0:23:480:23:50

of their own other than the fact

that we allowed people we knew were

0:23:500:23:53

a threat to our society back in to

integrate and learn from them.

0:23:530:23:56

Nicola?

To be honest, I think the UK

has the best legal system, the best

0:23:560:23:59

knowledge and understanding of

radicalisation and rehabilitation

0:23:590:24:04

compared to a lot of countries. I do

a lot of work in Europe and America

0:24:040:24:09

and I can pride myself on the UK.

Why are we not bringing them back to

0:24:090:24:15

monitor them?

We do not have the

resources.

But neither do these

0:24:150:24:20

countries. My concern is if you

leave them there, eventually they

0:24:200:24:24

will come out. You will not be able

to monitor them then. Eventually...

0:24:240:24:29

They have families here, they will

want to come back.

0:24:290:24:35

Nicola, I completely understand what

you are saying, but allowing people

0:24:350:24:38

to come back into this country that

we know has been exposed to terrible

0:24:380:24:43

ideology over there, have committed

crimes that you can't even speak of,

0:24:430:24:47

to come back and try to rehabilitate

these people into society where they

0:24:470:24:52

could be a threat to millions of

others is really unfair and very

0:24:520:24:55

selfish of us.

People can easily be

exposed to that very same ideology

0:24:550:25:02

on the dark web here as well. It

makes no difference whatsoever.

Why

0:25:020:25:07

should we bring them back?

400 are

already back, we need to start

0:25:070:25:13

working and understand what made

them... We need that understanding,

0:25:130:25:18

as counter extremism experts, as the

security agencies, as a government

0:25:180:25:22

we need to be able...

0:25:220:25:29

we need to be able...

Are they

subject to these Investigatory

0:25:290:25:31

Powers Bill? Are they monitored

every art of the day?

We do not know

0:25:310:25:36

where they are, we know they are

back.

We do not know where they are?

0:25:360:25:40

The security services are working

very hard to ensure they are found

0:25:400:25:45

and we are able to monitor them and

work with them.

0:25:450:25:49

What I would like to say is the

de-radicalisation process can be

0:25:490:25:55

effective...

How do you know they

are not lying to you?

It is all

0:25:550:26:02

relative.

They had deleted the

Internet history, they might be

0:26:020:26:05

pulling the wool over your eyes.

We

have great security systems in

0:26:050:26:09

place, great officers working who

are trained to extract the truth and

0:26:090:26:14

hundreds of civilians. You keep

going back...

0:26:140:26:21

ALL TALK AT ONCE We do not have the

level of evidence required from our

0:26:210:26:28

courts in this country.

We need to take it on a case-by-case

0:26:280:26:32

basis. No one individual will have

the same level of radicalisation,

0:26:320:26:37

the same level of engagement with

Isis as others. These young girls,

0:26:370:26:41

they have mostly been kept in large

houses, have been restricted with

0:26:410:26:44

their movements. Not all the women

have been trained.

The women are as

0:26:440:26:51

bad as the men. There is a police

force run by women which beats

0:26:510:26:58

women...

Let him explain, he has

been out there and force them, he

0:26:580:27:02

has fought IS. I want to hear from

Macer.

They have gone out there,

0:27:020:27:16

been trained, been exposed even more

ideology. Why risk inviting hundreds

0:27:160:27:20

of these people back to the UK when

they potentially could be so much

0:27:200:27:25

worse than the people already here?

There are many things we need to do.

0:27:250:27:29

We need to keep the ones that other

out and come after the people who

0:27:290:27:33

are back already.

Some of them have

been extremely vulnerable.

In what

0:27:330:27:38

way?

We look at the young girls...

Why do you keep mentioning the young

0:27:380:27:44

girls, what about the boys?

Because

we started this debate talking about

0:27:440:27:48

those young girls. There are many

more like them.

I will be with you

0:27:480:27:55

in a minute. Macer Gifford, is it a

principle of yours that you share

0:27:550:28:01

the crimes of the group you join?

Yes.

You fought with the white Fiji,

0:28:010:28:06

you could well be a criminal because

amnesty International has accused

0:28:060:28:13

the

0:28:130:28:18

the YPG of war crimes. Daesh you

fought with the YPG.

I encourage

0:28:180:28:22

Amnesty International to take that

back, which they did not. A year

0:28:220:28:26

later the UN did their own reporting

clear the YPG for the accusations.

0:28:260:28:31

The report was written on oral

evidence from people who had left

0:28:310:28:35

the war zone, it was politically

driven, basically. It was the fog of

0:28:350:28:42

war.

That is why it is so difficult

to get a conviction in these places

0:28:420:28:49

in a standard courtroom, isn't it?

Rabbi?

There are two principles, the

0:28:490:28:56

principle of law. We may have dodgy

evidence but we have the law. These

0:28:560:29:01

people, sadly, are British citizens

and therefore they have a right to

0:29:010:29:04

citizenship and we cannot take it

away. We can take it away if they

0:29:040:29:09

are dual nationals, but not British

citizens. We had to take them back

0:29:090:29:13

because we abide by the rule of law.

Then there is the question of what

0:29:130:29:16

we do with them, we have to sift

between those who were naive and

0:29:160:29:20

need to be educated, those who are

brainwashed and need to be

0:29:200:29:24

deprogrammed and those who are dill

-- guilty and need to be imprisoned

0:29:240:29:28

or whatever. Justice is the only

thing we can on. That is why we have

0:29:280:29:34

to apply the same standards to

people fighting on the other side.

0:29:340:29:37

Aren't they all, in a sense, guilty?

Everyone in that war zone is under

0:29:370:29:44

suspicion. Just because you were

involved in a just cause does not

0:29:440:29:47

mean to say that some of your people

may not have also been involved in

0:29:470:29:51

murders. It is the only backbone we

have, if we do not adhere then we

0:29:510:29:56

collapse completely.

0:29:560:30:03

My group is the one that captured

the so-called Beatles. They have

0:30:040:30:09

banned the death penalty just to

appease the concerns of the

0:30:090:30:12

gentleman at the back. They work

closely with the Americans and the

0:30:120:30:16

Brits.

There are so many groups

there.

There really are, that is why

0:30:160:30:22

we are trying to simplify it. ISIS

are out of the equation now and

0:30:220:30:27

trying to come up with a peaceful

solution -- we are trying to come up

0:30:270:30:35

with a peaceful solution. Keeping

prisons would keep jihadis in the UN

0:30:350:30:44

funded prison, there's many options

we have got in that regard.

Here is

0:30:440:30:49

an ideology. If some of these people

have rightly or wrongly felt so

0:30:490:30:55

passionate and so strongly about

going abroad and fighting for a

0:30:550:30:59

cause, whether it is anti-Isis or

against ISIS particularly as Macer

0:30:590:31:15

did, keep them abroad because that

energy could be better used abroad,

0:31:150:31:19

not here. I think it's about time

somebody here spoke up for our

0:31:190:31:25

security services and particularly

our police force which is depleted

0:31:250:31:28

and we are struggling as it is, so

keep them abroad and let them do

0:31:280:31:34

some service there. They can

continue the work they wanted to do

0:31:340:31:38

either for that country or those

people and help them to survive now.

0:31:380:31:43

Hopefully the war will be over and

then they can build the country up

0:31:430:31:48

again. Don't bring them back,

please, we don't want any more.

0:31:480:31:54

Thank you all very much indeed.

0:31:540:31:59

We are going to talk about education

now.

0:31:590:32:02

If you have something

to say about that debate,

0:32:020:32:04

log on to bbc.co.uk/thebigquestions,

then follow the link

0:32:040:32:06

to where you can join

in the discussion online.

0:32:060:32:08

Or contribute on Twitter.

0:32:080:32:10

Next, here at Leicester Grammar

School, we'll be debating

0:32:100:32:12

whether schools should select

exclusively by faith.

0:32:120:32:17

But before that, make a note

of this email address -

0:32:170:32:19

[email protected] -

if you'd like to apply

0:32:190:32:22

to be in the audience

at a future programme.

0:32:220:32:26

We're in Bath next Sunday,

Edinburgh on March 4th and Newport,

0:32:260:32:28

South Wales the week after that.

0:32:280:32:34

Leicester, famous for being the most

multicultural and multi-faith city

0:32:340:32:42

in the United Kingdom.

0:32:420:32:48

But soon Leicester, and 11

other local authorities,

0:32:480:32:50

will face a shortfall

of secondary school places.

0:32:500:32:52

Schools here are already

operating at 104% capacity,

0:32:520:32:54

and that's forecast to rise

to 135% by 2022.

0:32:540:32:57

So the rules for selecting pupils

by each school are coming

0:32:570:33:00

under increased scrutiny.

0:33:000:33:01

Many faith schools say they'll have

to turn down children

0:33:010:33:03

from their own religion

unless the rules are changed.

0:33:030:33:09

Currently only 50% of pupils can be

selected according to their faith

0:33:090:33:12

in newer schools opened since 2010.

0:33:120:33:13

Should schools select

exclusively by faith?

0:33:130:33:21

This is something you have been

campaigning on for as long as I can

0:33:220:33:29

remember and probably as long as you

can remember as

0:33:290:33:35

can remember as well, Rabbi.

Yes and

this is something I have been

0:33:350:33:44

campaigning on. For two reasons,

first principle because it is

0:33:440:33:49

discrimination. We wouldn't dream of

having swimming pools only for

0:33:490:33:58

Hindus. Secondly, practical level,

faith schools divide children. It

0:33:590:34:06

may not be the intention but that is

the effect. It is Jews over there,

0:34:060:34:14

Catholics and Sikh, whatever. You

are segregating the children which

0:34:140:34:19

means the next generation have the,

suspicion and prejudice. Precisely

0:34:190:34:29

because we are multi-faith society,

we want to work hard to make it not

0:34:290:34:34

the multi-fractious society. It is a

disservice not only to the children,

0:34:340:34:38

because we are talking about

education, and here is another

0:34:380:34:42

irony, education is where we want

children to broaden their horizons

0:34:420:34:46

and yet by putting them into

individual schools we are denuding

0:34:460:34:53

them of wider society. What lesson

are we giving them if we divide them

0:34:530:34:57

at the gate? By the way this is also

a religious argument because those

0:34:570:35:01

of faith and no faith at all which

share the added love thy neighbour

0:35:010:35:06

as you know yourself but you cannot

love thy neighbour if you don't know

0:35:060:35:10

your neighbour. It is very

important. Just to give you a

0:35:100:35:17

practical example, this isn't just

theory, I deliberately didn't send

0:35:170:35:21

my children to the local Jewish Day

school, I sent them to a community

0:35:210:35:25

school because I wanted my Jewish

children to sit next to a Christian

0:35:250:35:29

and walk home with a Muslim, do brag

with a catholic because that way

0:35:290:35:34

they get to know my children, my

children get to know them and we end

0:35:340:35:37

up with a better rounded society. By

all means let faith flourish at

0:35:370:35:43

home, church, the

0:35:430:35:50

mosque, after-school, weekends,

summer camps, but not let faith

0:36:000:36:01

divide the children Monday to

Friday, 9-3.

I think you have said

0:36:010:36:04

everything! I honestly don't think

you have got anything else to say,

0:36:040:36:06

it was all in there! I don't

understand that because I right in

0:36:060:36:09

saying you don't want children in

backgrounds of other faiths at your

0:36:090:36:14

school, Sujata?

That is not the

totality of what I am saying. I

0:36:140:36:23

would want the model we have in the

Hindu faith because per se I do

0:36:230:36:30

agree with the Rabbi, in an ideal

world we shouldn't have faith

0:36:300:36:34

schools. If state funded schools

provided rounded quality of

0:36:340:36:40

religious education, we would have

no need for faith schools at all.

So

0:36:400:36:47

you want a 100% Hindu school?

A lot

of the religious education

0:36:470:36:53

information is not correct, the

books need to be amended and

0:36:530:36:57

corrected, therefore we do need some

schools to provide the correct

0:36:570:37:01

religious education.

So you don't

want children from other faiths at

0:37:010:37:07

your school?

No no no, we have to

have... We must reflect what's

0:37:070:37:11

happening in real life in our

schools. However, there are some

0:37:110:37:17

schools, particularly in Leicester,

majority on faith only.

So do you

0:37:170:37:23

want a 100% Hindu faith school?

No,

we don't have that, we do have a

0:37:230:37:30

model...

Do you want to break the

50% barrier?

We want children of all

0:37:300:37:36

faiths to go to school together. It

works very well. There is no need to

0:37:360:37:43

have a quota. If it is based on the

catchment area, meritocracy, then

0:37:430:37:47

there is no need for a catchment

area. Why throw the baby out with

0:37:470:37:53

the bath water? If you are going to

have a school built on the ethos of

0:37:530:37:57

my faith which is Hinduism, a

pluralistic religion for want of a

0:37:570:38:01

better word, it is not quite a

religion but it is a religion in the

0:38:010:38:08

English educational system. We don't

want to go down the other route

0:38:080:38:11

where there is too much orthodoxy,

too much regimental air Station, and

0:38:110:38:16

children who are not mixing

0:38:160:38:23

children who are not mixing with

other faiths. -- regimentalisation.

0:38:240:38:31

Lynne, you were shifting in your

seat.

I worry about the hip --

0:38:310:38:42

hypocrisy of this because you are

saying we would prefer to have

0:38:420:38:46

children of this faith because they

are better than other children. As

0:38:460:38:49

soon as you select by faith, you are

saying to others in the community

0:38:490:38:54

that our faith is better than yours.

Let me come back in second because

0:38:540:38:59

you had quite a lot at the

beginning. Jonathan, you can come

0:38:590:39:05

back and correct that in a few

moments, I want to spread the love

0:39:050:39:10

in this multi-faith exercise in

which we are partaking. David,

0:39:100:39:15

respond to that point.

0:39:150:39:22

respond to that point.

About faith?

I think selecting of the school

0:39:220:39:24

begins with the family, selecting to

send their children to a school so

0:39:240:39:28

it is a two way process. I would

acknowledge and agree with a lot of

0:39:280:39:33

the points that have been made. We

don't want to have schools that are

0:39:330:39:39

exclusive on views and on formation

of children, but those are the kind

0:39:390:39:43

of views, the kind of values that

for instance in my community a

0:39:430:39:49

catholic school would have. We have

about 2500 schools across England

0:39:490:39:55

and Wales, 22 Catholic schools in

Leicestershire. Nationally 68% of

0:39:550:40:00

the students who come to our schools

are catholic.

So you want to get rid

0:40:000:40:07

of the 50% barrier? What do you want

to take it too?

I wanted to be open

0:40:070:40:15

that you can select those schools.

You would be happy with 100%?

0:40:150:40:21

Absolutely. So that families can

educate their children according to

0:40:210:40:25

the faith community and the ethos of

that community, and they have the

0:40:250:40:29

right to do that.

Are they catholic

children?

Yes, the children who come

0:40:290:40:38

to my school are catholic.

How can

you be catholic if you are not old

0:40:380:40:43

enough to make a choice. It's like

saying a Scientologist child, a

0:40:430:40:51

creationist child.

They are formed

as part of the community, then they

0:40:510:40:58

make their decisions and is formed

by that to grow and be enriched by

0:40:580:41:03

the society.

Or impoverished as the

case may be.

Our schools are

0:41:030:41:09

supervised by Ofsted, supervised in

education systems which look at

0:41:090:41:14

them.

0:41:140:41:19

them.

Jonathan.

That is disgraceful,

you are saying you want 100%

0:41:190:41:22

Catholic schools. Too many people

just heard you. In other words you

0:41:220:41:29

want an educational ghetto.

0:41:290:41:35

want an educational ghetto. Jesus

said, suffer the little children. He

0:41:350:41:38

didn't say segregate the little

children.

I grew up in Northern

0:41:380:41:45

Ireland, where there was great

segregation. I went to a catholic

0:41:450:41:48

grammar school in Northern Ireland

and ironically what you might think,

0:41:480:41:54

the school was the absolute

antithesis to what was happening

0:41:540:41:58

outside. It was the place where we

were given a broader spectrum of

0:41:580:42:04

views, where people of different

views to us were brought in in the

0:42:040:42:09

1990s when the troubles were coming

to an end. The non-Catholic schools

0:42:090:42:15

in Northern Ireland were bastions of

diversity.

Would you have a debating

0:42:150:42:19

society? We seek to have balanced

views on this programme, more often

0:42:190:42:25

than not I hope we succeed but...

Quiet at the back! If you are having

0:42:250:42:31

a debate for example on abortion,

would you be able to have a properly

0:42:310:42:35

balanced debate in the school with

100% Catholic children?

Absolutely.

0:42:350:42:43

Not everyone who professes

themselves to be catholic would

0:42:430:42:49

beyond a particular line on an issue

like abortion.

So you would be able

0:42:490:42:53

to say it is a woman's right to

choose?

In order to open the minds

0:42:530:42:58

of our children, we would want to

give them access to all areas of any

0:42:580:43:02

particular debate so they can form

their opinions on so the views they

0:43:020:43:06

hold are part of their conscience.

And sexual education, information

0:43:060:43:16

about homosexuality?

Yes, we teach

that already through our sex

0:43:160:43:21

education programme.

If the child

came to you...

Of course we have

0:43:210:43:26

children in our schools who say they

are gay and they are supported on

0:43:260:43:31

cherished and enriched.

In that

case, how do you explain what's

0:43:310:43:35

happening in Northern Ireland today,

the school population is going down

0:43:350:43:38

and yet there is a vast increase in

children going to integrated

0:43:380:43:44

schools, because the parents realise

that they help perpetuate the

0:43:440:43:50

prejudice and now the parents are

realising the only way forward is to

0:43:500:43:57

go to integrated schools.

What is

the evidence...

Statistics.

What is

0:43:570:44:05

the evidence faith schools in

Northern Ireland problem to

0:44:050:44:09

conflict? In my experience they help

to end the conflict. It's true, I

0:44:090:44:16

have that experience, being part of

our community.

Integrated schools,

0:44:160:44:22

they know...

It is an unorthodox

view.

It might be but it happens to

0:44:220:44:29

be the view I hold. It was the

community standing up together and

0:44:290:44:33

saying we no longer want to have

this conflict.

0:44:330:44:40

Good morning, Malcolm Trobe! How are

you doing? This is giving parents a

0:44:400:44:46

choice to instil moral values and

their children, is it not?

0:44:460:44:50

I think what we are saying is what

we want from our education service?

0:44:500:44:54

The key thing we want is for every

child to go to a good local schools.

0:44:540:44:59

That local school is representative

of the community in which they live.

0:44:590:45:03

We live in a multicultural world. We

want young people to be able to

0:45:030:45:09

experience that. The schools should

be representative of that. We want

0:45:090:45:13

all children to have a good school,

we want that school to represent the

0:45:130:45:17

local community. We do not want

youngsters travelling miles. We do

0:45:170:45:21

not want a youngster living

literally 100 yards away from a

0:45:210:45:24

school but cannot go to their local

school, they are having to travel.

0:45:240:45:29

We want all schools to be a good

local school. That is what we are

0:45:290:45:34

really after.

Malcolm is quite

right, you have to differentiate

0:45:340:45:38

between an independent faith school

and a state faith school.

Of course.

0:45:380:45:44

Lots of our faith schools, because

they are predominantly in that

0:45:440:45:49

majority face area, that location,

if 99% of those children in that

0:45:490:45:55

school are of one faith, what

happens to the parents unbend the

0:45:550:45:59

children don't want to go to that

school, because the culture will be

0:45:590:46:05

one culture.

What happens, Henna

I went from being in a very diverse,

0:46:050:46:14

mixed school which was secular, it

did not have any religious

0:46:140:46:17

affiliations here in Leicester, for

my primary education, although there

0:46:170:46:20

was a short period when I had a

Catholic Junior school education,

0:46:200:46:27

into an all girls Muslim school in

Leicester. Suddenly from having a

0:46:270:46:33

very broad reach of friends, I went

to only seeing Muslim girls in this

0:46:330:46:37

school. Who were living in the same

streets, attending the same address

0:46:370:46:43

as me in the evenings -- attending

the same madrasah as me.

Were there

0:46:430:46:54

different attitudes about society?

All of a sudden from having this

0:46:540:46:59

rich culture of celebrating

nativities, celebrating Hanika,

0:46:590:47:03

celebrating Diwali, it all became

about Islam.

What about the boys and

0:47:030:47:11

girls?

We don't talk to boys because

we are in a girls school, if we took

0:47:110:47:15

two boys we will be expelled and

taken to task. This is the 80s.

I

0:47:150:47:20

think it still goes on.

From being a

tomboy and the majority of my

0:47:200:47:25

friends were male and I only had a

couple of female friends, I now had

0:47:250:47:31

to tolerate being in an all-female

environment.

Audience, I will be

0:47:310:47:34

with you in a second.

I am all for...

Was that your

0:47:340:47:41

experience?

I do not think there has

to be 100% faith schools.

Was that

0:47:410:47:47

your experience?

I have been a

school governor and mixed in with a

0:47:470:47:50

lot of governors who are governors

for faith schools and I see the

0:47:500:47:54

difference. Our culture, our

religion is better, the way they try

0:47:540:47:59

to instil their Muslim girls all

Muslim boys, don't talk to each

0:47:590:48:03

other. You are not allowed. It is

not our religion. That cannot be

0:48:030:48:09

healthy.

That would be exactly the

view we would want to teach our

0:48:090:48:13

children against. As I say, 68%...

Allow me to go to the audience.

0:48:130:48:24

That's you. How are you?

Very well,

thank you. How are you?

Fire away.

0:48:240:48:31

The debate so far as one of the most

eloquent testimonies for the reason

0:48:310:48:35

we ought to abolish faith in

schools. We need a completely

0:48:350:48:42

secular education system. I separate

the idea of education from

0:48:420:48:46

schooling. The problem with faith

schools is they school people in

0:48:460:48:50

their particular brand of faith

throughout an entire process,

0:48:500:48:53

leading to many of the problems we

discussed at the beginning of the

0:48:530:48:57

programme. I think the

multicultural, anti-racist,

0:48:570:49:03

democratic, just way of organising

education is to ban all face from

0:49:030:49:07

schools. It is not out of this world

to do so, it is against the law in

0:49:070:49:12

France, in the United States...

You

want to learn about faith in

0:49:120:49:16

schools?

0:49:160:49:21

schools?

Appreciate its history from

an academic and social

0:49:210:49:25

anthropological perspective.

Don't

make me say that word! Can I move it

0:49:250:49:29

along?

I think they'd schools,

personally as a parent I made a

0:49:290:49:37

parental choice, I wanted my

children to go to what was described

0:49:370:49:40

as a fake school, a Church of

England school, about 20, 25, 30%

0:49:400:49:46

from different communities. -- I

wanted my children to good was

0:49:460:49:50

described as a faith school. We need

our children to go to schools of

0:49:500:49:55

tolerance which might encourage

students to consider other faiths or

0:49:550:49:58

no faith at all.

There is a phrase

in England for Church of England

0:49:580:50:05

schools, prey on your knees... On

your knees to avoid the fees! That

0:50:050:50:10

is what people say in London. All of

a sudden, people have rapid

0:50:100:50:15

convergence.

We talked about mileage

and people sending their kids to

0:50:150:50:20

great distance, some sent their kids

to great distance to private

0:50:200:50:24

independent schools.

Madrasah.

In

terms of faith schools, I think the

0:50:240:50:31

problem is I have plenty of friends

who goes of my best friends are

0:50:310:50:36

Muslim, Hindu or whatever, but

sometimes I think they can promote a

0:50:360:50:40

lack of understanding in community.

I studied REI GCSE and there was a

0:50:400:50:45

very, very big balance across the

subjects. -- studied RE at GCSE. It

0:50:450:50:53

has been important for people of

faith is to mix, for me some of my

0:50:530:50:59

friends can't do certain things and

for me I would not have understood

0:50:590:51:02

that if I just went to a school

based on Christianity. I think it is

0:51:020:51:07

really important to mix kids from an

early age.

0:51:070:51:13

Blue shirt?

Quite frankly the world

that we live in is not one religion,

0:51:130:51:17

it is not Islam, not Christianity,

not Judaism. If you speak to people

0:51:170:51:22

along those lines, whatever you want

to say about percentages and trying

0:51:220:51:28

to teach acceptance of other

religions etc, when people get into

0:51:280:51:31

the real world, the real world is

not like the school you will have

0:51:310:51:34

been in -- if you split people along

those lines. And school has to teach

0:51:340:51:38

you about the real world.

An

audience consistency, apart from

0:51:380:51:43

your good self.

I think education is so much more

0:51:430:51:47

than just learning academic

principles. You forget about

0:51:470:51:51

lunchtimes, break times when friends

are mixing and people are mixing.

0:51:510:51:55

Diversity is one of the most

important

0:51:550:52:02

important things in today's society

to avoid the issues we spoke about

0:52:020:52:04

earlier. How on earth can being

taught one principle prepare you for

0:52:040:52:07

society and life outside of school?

Lynn, we have Ofsted to take care of

0:52:070:52:16

business and make sure things are on

the straight and narrow and nobody

0:52:160:52:21

is teaching creationism or

pseudoscience and they are doing six

0:52:210:52:24

and relationship education properly,

aunt Ofsted the big safeguarding all

0:52:240:52:28

of this?

One of the safeguard, but

the better safeguard is not to go

0:52:280:52:34

there in the first place, I think.

Most of the audience will agree that

0:52:340:52:41

as soon as you segregate kids in

different ghettos, going back to the

0:52:410:52:46

earlier discussion about security

and extremism, you are more likely

0:52:460:52:52

not to be able to build resilience

to extremist views if you have only

0:52:520:52:57

had the view that your religion is

better than others. I am sorry, you

0:52:570:53:03

may have this open idea that we talk

about homosexuality and abortion and

0:53:030:53:07

are fine with all of its, but if

you're fine with all of it you do

0:53:070:53:13

not need separate schools for

different religions. You are not

0:53:130:53:19

fine with it because you want to

have kids and you want to teach

0:53:190:53:23

children the values that you

espouse, which are different from

0:53:230:53:27

the values elsewhere. It is only

when you get over that by having a

0:53:270:53:33

secular system, I am not talking

about atheism, that is different, a

0:53:330:53:37

secular system where you genuinely

value...

The word secular is so

0:53:370:53:41

misused. It means not facing any

particular religion or creed over

0:53:410:53:46

another.

Not privileging one

religion.

It is not a religious.

0:53:460:53:50

What a secular school looks like is

favouring secularism is a particular

0:53:500:53:56

viewpoint over others.

Run this by

me again?

Secularism is a position

0:53:560:54:04

on faith.

It is not.

It is not

privileging any faith over another.

0:54:040:54:10

I went to what you might describe as

a secular school but we had a good

0:54:100:54:15

understanding of Christianity,

Hinduism, Islam. You don't need to

0:54:150:54:22

be...

ALL TALK AT ONCE Are you a teacher?

0:54:220:54:25

I am a governor.

So he will know

secularism is not privileging any

0:54:250:54:30

faith over another faith, it is not

anti-faith.

It is a position on

0:54:300:54:34

faith.

You will completely devastate

my daughter who is in the Green room

0:54:340:54:41

and goes to a Catholic school.

Secularism is the separation of

0:54:410:54:46

church and state, you do not

privilege religion in the law,

0:54:460:54:51

decision-making, the process of the

police...

Does that allow for

0:54:510:54:56

religions to be exercised freely?

Absolutely. In a liberal, secular

0:54:560:55:02

society.

ALL TALK AT ONCE

...

0:55:020:55:03

We want to educate our children in

the traditions of our community...

0:55:030:55:08

This is the most unruly class I have

ever taught! David.

The things that

0:55:080:55:15

you are describing, the values you

are describing, like the British

0:55:150:55:18

values agenda in school, all of

those things are things that we

0:55:180:55:23

value in our Catholic schools.

Having children from other faiths?

0:55:230:55:29

We have lots of them. Lots of

children from other faiths. You can

0:55:290:55:33

shout me down as much as you want

but we have lots of children from

0:55:330:55:37

other faiths. We treasure those

children and educate them.

0:55:370:55:43

Treasure?! How patronising!

Wires

that patronising?

He said these

0:55:430:55:48

children as if they are over.

APPLAUSE

0:55:480:55:52

We treasure all of our children.

Equally. And give them an

0:55:520:56:00

opportunity to engage with the

traditions of our community. That is

0:56:000:56:03

what we do.

It is a good idea to

keep 50%, arguably. Nicola, do you

0:56:030:56:09

have a view?

0:56:090:56:14

have a view?

There is nothing wrong

with parents... Parents want the

0:56:150:56:17

best for their children, they want

to protect them. It is very rare you

0:56:170:56:22

do not have that. Sometimes that may

be choosing a faith school. What

0:56:220:56:26

let's is down is sometimes not the

faith itself, because what we are

0:56:260:56:30

signing ourselves up for is the

morals and teachings, but what

0:56:300:56:35

letters down as the leadership in

those schools. They are not skilled

0:56:350:56:39

enough. I get what you are saying

that actually be straight schools

0:56:390:56:44

want to open up and have this

debate, but unfortunately what my

0:56:440:56:51

experience says is the people in

these positions have not got the

0:56:510:56:54

skill set and letting our children

down.

Many of our schools are led by

0:56:540:56:59

leadership teams, governors and

senior leaders graded good or

0:56:590:57:02

outstanding. There are policies are

bringing that require improvement or

0:57:020:57:07

unsatisfactory to that system. I am

happy to accept that standards in

0:57:070:57:13

schools need to be driven up, but

those standards are there. It is

0:57:130:57:19

simply not right to say the

leadership is defective.

What is

0:57:190:57:23

your experience of good leadership,

Nicola?

Unfortunately sometimes when

0:57:230:57:30

you have poor leadership it is very

much driven by the academic. It is

0:57:300:57:34

very much about results and those

margins. What does not happen is

0:57:340:57:39

quite often it is pushed aside, it

is the whole child, the whole

0:57:390:57:45

well-being. Everything about that

person. It is more about the

0:57:450:57:49

academic, whether they are achieving

and whether their school will be

0:57:490:57:53

outstanding.

A vision

-- a vision of

Catholic education would be

0:57:530:57:59

educating the whole person. The

person is formed in Christ and to

0:57:590:58:03

educate the whole person, which is

why we constantly drive our schools

0:58:030:58:07

to be good and outstanding. We have

lots of wonderful children from a

0:58:070:58:11

lot of different backgrounds. Our

schools are the most diverse

0:58:110:58:14

schools.

15 second answer?

If we

want a tolerant, inclusive society

0:58:140:58:22

then we had to have a tolerant,

inclusive education system...

Which

0:58:220:58:27

allows people to be educated in

their faith.

Thank you. Thank you

0:58:270:58:32

very much.

0:58:320:58:34

As always, the debates will continue

online and on Twitter.

0:58:340:58:36

Next week we're in Bath,

so do join us then.

0:58:360:58:38

But for now, it's goodbye

and have a great Sunday.

0:58:380:58:43

Thank you for watching.

0:58:430:58:45

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