The Government accused faith schools of discriminating against poorer pupils in order to impress Britain’s “strident secularist lobby,” a new report claims.
The report, from the Centre for Policy Studies, also says that new admissions rules have targeted faith schools as part of a “witch hunt”.
Faith schools often out-perform their secular counterparts and are increasingly popular with parents. Opponents claim the success is due to the schools ‘cherry-picking’ pupils.
A new admissions code was recently imposed which prevented schools from looking into applicants’ backgrounds and made it difficult for them to ensure that parents supported their religious ethos.
However, the report says that the real reason for the new rules was that faith schools are unpopular with those who want to promote a secular agenda.
It says: “A Government obsessed with phoney egalitarianism and control freakery is aligning itself with the strident secularist lobby to threaten the future of faith schools in Britain.
“Faith schools know that they are at the mercy of the current administration. They were in with Tony Blair – but they are out with Gordon Brown.”