The Express is reporting that a school which hit the headlines after teachers called in the police to interrogate a boy who accessed the UKIP website had previously banned pupils from voting for the party in a mock election.
Teachers at Wildern School told students they were not allowed to cast votes for UKIP in a school-wide mock General Election, held before the real vote in May last year, because the party is ‘racist’, according to one furious parent…
In a statement, the school said teachers only had a limited time in which to hold the mock General Election, and so the debate had only encompassed the three biggest political parties at the time.
But one enraged father, whose child took part in the debate, said youngsters had been told by teachers they could not cast votes for UKIP because the party was considered racist…
He said: “The school held a mock General Election last May for pupils. In this mock election I was shocked to hear that pupils were not allowed to vote for UKIP as it was deemed a racist party.
“There is clearly a political agenda within the school, whereas I don’t believe children should be given biased information. They should have the opportunity to form their own minds up with regards to political feelings.
“The school should be politically neutral as far as I am concerned.”
…In an email Express.co.uk asked Wildern headteacher Marie-Louise Litton whether the school had a policy, official or otherwise, which designated UKIP racist and whether teachers were asked to actively discourage pupils from researching, volunteering for or even discussing the party.
In a statement she replied: “Last year Wildern School held mock elections, for all of its students to experience what it feels like to vote.
“As there was only limited time available for the exercise, students spent one lesson analysing the main policies of the three largest political parties at that time.
“The school has a politically neutral approach and encourages students to engage with the political process.
“The mock election took place nearly a year ago and this is the first time the school has been made aware of any concerns.”
So we’re are left here, a long tim after the event, with what looks like a lot of digging from the paper and a case of ‘he said’ versus ‘she said’.
That said, I’m not sure the school’s comment about analysing the ‘three main parties at the time’ stands up very well because UKIP were recognised as major party ahead of the election, hence their inclusion in the TV debates.
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