1. ITV Report

Probe into alleged 'Muslim schools plot' widens

Children leaving an Islamic school in north London. Photo: PA

An investigation is underway into allegations of extremism and radicalism in 25 schools in Birmingham, first brought to light in an anonymous letter dubbed Operation Trojan Horse which apparently set out a blueprint for seizing control of governing bodies and forcing out those who did not agree.

Birmingham City Council has admitted that it has struggled to get information from some schools since the investigation began, adding that it has been in contact with authorities in Manchester over issues similar to the 'Trojan Horse' allegations.

ITV News correspondent Rupert Evelyn reports:

The council's update comes as the Department for Education (DfE), which is running its own parallel inquiry, said that Ofsted had now been sent in to a total of 15 city schools since the claims came to light.

The Trojan Horse document, which is unsigned and undated but which was first leaked to local authorities and teaching unions as far back as last year, claimed to have caused "a great amount of organised disruption" in the city, and credited the plan with forcing a change of leadership at four schools.

Deputy Prime Minister Nick Clegg said schools should not be allowed to become "silos of segregation" as he backed the DfE probe.

Birmingham City Council's Cabinet member for Children and Family Services Bridget Jones told ITV News that the allegations span from 20 years ago to right up to the present day.

The focus of the allegations has been the Park View Educational Trust, which runs three city schools - all of which have been subjected to snap Ofsted inspections in recent weeks. School trustees have firmly denied all the claims, branding the allegations "a witch-hunt".

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