‘If you don’t like it, take the child out!’ School head delivers message to parents after ‘prayer ban’ ruling

‘If you don’t like it, take the child out!’ School head delivers message to parents after ‘prayer ban’ ruling

‘If you don’t like it, take the child out!’

GB News
Gabrielle Wilde

By Gabrielle Wilde

Published: 17/04/2024

- 14:26

Updated: 17/04/2024

- 14:46

A Muslim student at a London school has lost a High Court challenge against its ban on prayer rituals

  • Do you think that the 'prayer ban' ruling was fair?
  • Join in the debate in the comments below

A British headteacher has spoken out after a student at a London school lost a High Court case against its "prayer ban."

Michaela School in Wembley was taken to court by the girl over the policy, which she argued was discriminatory.

The non-faith state secondary school previously told the High Court that allowing prayer rituals risked "undermining inclusion" among pupils.

Speaking to GB News, Executive Headteacher at St Thomas the Apostle Serge Cefai said: "We were very nervous that it might have gone the other way.

Serge Cefai

​Serge Cefai was relieved with the outcome of the court battle 

GB News

"We were nervous about what the implications of that might be for headteachers all around the country.

"I need to start by saying well done to the headteacher and the governing body for actually standing up for once because this took courage.


"I'm glad to say that GB News brings up now and again the story of that teacher who had gone missing for three years in hiding because he was trying to educate, no one else likes to talk about it.

He added: "For goodness sake. We have school choice in this country. You can apply for whatever school you like. You don't join a school and then try to change the rules.

"If she doesn't like it. Take the child out. I can't tell you how many times I've talked to parents about not only this sort of thing.

\u200bMichaela Community SchoolMichaela Community School in Wembley was sued by a Muslim studentGoogle Maps

"If you don't like what's going on here, take them somewhere else."

There is no legal precedent requiring schools to afford pupils a time to pray.

The judgement supports the right of individual schools, head teachers and school governors to have autonomy on the matter.

Some schools already set aside space for Muslim pupils to pray, others do not, but there is no overriding legal obligation to do so.

The ruling has implications for every state-funded non-religious school in England.

After the ruling, the student said that she was "disappointed" but planned to remain at the school and focus on her GCSE exams.

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