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BLUNKETT READY TO CLOSE NATION OF ISLAM SCHOOL

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A school run by black extremists is being threatened with closure by the government, reported The Mail on Sunday (p...
A school run by black extremists is being threatened with closure by the government, reported The Mail on Sunday (p12). The Star Chamber Academy, set up by the Nation of Islam, has been given until 9 June to reveal details of 'the mysterious figures behind it'.

Education secretary David Blunkett has demanded that the school is shut down unless it gives details of its owners, governors, teachers and pupil numbers. If it fails to do so, the government will

strike it from the register of independent schools. It would then be illegal for the school to continue and the Nation of Islam would face prosecution if it attempted to keep it open.

Sources at the DfEE believe the west London school is 'extremely unlikely' to comply with the order and will have to close. The move could increase racial tension at a time when feelings are running

high in the wake of the Brixton and Brick Lane bombings, for racist groups have claimed responsibility.

Since taking over the Simba Community Centre in Shepherd's Bush in 1997 the Nation of islam has refused requests to meet the legal requirement of giving basic details about the school. It is

believed that up to 30 pupils, aged from five to 16, attend the school, where lessons focus on African and Islamic subjects. The children are in single-sex classes and are protected by minders

from the group.

In a further twist, Hammersmith and Fulham LBC has stepped up attempts to move the school out of the community centre, saying it is badly needed by other black groups.

The Nation of Islam, which set up its British arm in 1986, was not available for comment.

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