Ofsted ‘misled Parliament’ in British values schools row

Ofsted has been accused of misleading Parliament over an investigation into complaints from parents at Christian schools.

During inspections at The Durham Free School and Grindon Hall Christian School in Sunderland, children faced intrusive questioning such as whether they knew anyone ‘trapped in the wrong body’.

Parents said they were appalled at the conduct of the inspectors, but Ofsted chief Sir Michael Wilshaw told the Education Select Committee he had “thoroughly” investigated the claims and found them to be false.


However, following a Freedom of Information (FOI) request, Ofsted revealed that none of the pupils, parents or staff who had complained were interviewed before or after Sir Michael’s comments to Parliament.

The Christian Institute said the FOI request revealed the inadequacy of Ofsted’s investigation.

Deputy Director Simon Calvert said: “Misleading Parliament by saying that there had been a thorough investigation into the complaints made by the children, parents and school is very serious.


“It is patently clear from this Freedom of Information request that the so-called inquiry was wholly inadequate.

“It was superficial, failed to speak to those making the complaints, or meet the lowest bar for an impartial inquiry.

“It would be highly surprising if the members of the Education Select Committee and Secretary of State did not revisit this matter urgently after the election.”


However, Ofsted rejected the claim of misleading Parliament and said it stood by its investigation.

The Durham Free School has now been closed following the inspection, but Grindon Hall school remains open.

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