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Schools: Anti-Semitism

Volume 506: debated on Wednesday 3 March 2010

To ask the Secretary of State for Children, Schools and Families what steps his Department (a) has taken recently and (b) plans to take to reduce levels of anti-Semitism in schools; what recent discussions Ministers and officials in his Department have had on this issue; what recent representations he has received on this issue; and if he will make a statement. (318693)

I refer the hon. Member to the reply given to him on 9 July 2009, Official Report, columns 1001-1002W. Further to that, the Department is currently consulting on a new statutory duty on schools to record and report to the local authority all incidents of bullying between pupils including racist bullying. The consultation will end on 4 March 2010 and plans are for the new duty to come into effect in September 2010. We have also provided additional funding to the School Linking Network to promote inter-faith linking by supporting faith schools, from both the independent and maintained sectors, to work in partnership to provide opportunities for their pupils to mix and interact, in order to promote community cohesion. My officials regularly attend the Anti-Semitism Working Group along with officials from other Government Departments and stakeholders from across the Jewish communities to monitor progress and discuss issues in relation to tackling anti-Semitism.