Manchester’s King David High has twinned with an Islamic school in a bid to improve interfaith understanding.
KD will have regular shared lessons and assemblies with students from Manchester Islamic High School for Girls.
The link has taken two years to develop. In a trial event a fortnight ago, 10 girls from the Muslim school took an assembly at KD and engaged in discussions with year 10 students as part of Jewish studies.
Jewish studies head Rabbi Benjamin Rickman said that as the next stage, KD students would make a presentation at the 225-pupil Islamic school.
“My hope is to then move this up a level and bring Jewish and Muslim parents together and I would welcome the opportunity to speak to a Muslim community. This is part of a process that I hope will lead to a change in thinking. By talking to people of other faiths, we are not seeking to blur the distinctions between us but amplify the things we have in common.”
At Manchester Islamic High, religious studies head Tahira Parveen noted: “We haven’t had a link with a Jewish school and it is one community we needed to understand. Faith schools are criticised for segregation, but our aim is integration.
“As religions we have a lot of similarities. Even the questions the [Muslim and Jewish] pupils asked were very similar and we see our rituals embedded into everyday life in a similar way.”