Family & Education

School in planning row wins praise from Ofsted

Inspection service recommends approval for school to expand


A Chasidic school in Stamford Hill which has been ordered by the local council to stop using its building has received a positive report from Ofsted.

The inspectorate said Talmud Torah London was likely to meet independent school standards.

The boys’ primary began using its new premises in Lordship Park in June, having outgrown its previous home.

But Hackney Council said it did not have planning permission and still had safety concerns to address.

The school, which has 54 boys aged from five to nine, is seeking approval from the Department for Education to increase to 100 pupils and add classes for years five and six.

Ofsted said in its report this week that the new building had been “renovated to a high standard” and was “bright, spacious and airy”.

Renovations were “near completion. Leaders and governors are relentless in ensuring that any minor issues relating to safety are dealt with promptly by the builders”.

It said teaching plans for 10 to 11-year-olds were comparable to the aims of the national curriculum and overall the school was likely to meet equality requirements.

The school’s leadership was reviewing “how to ensure that older pupils are given appropriate experiences to develop their respect for families and households which differ to their own,” Ofsted said.

The school — rated good by Ofsted earlier this year — has said it will mount a legal challenge to the council’s decision.

As Hackney’s Charedi community is growing by around four per cent a year, finding space for schools to expand is a major issue.

While the inspection report included favourable comments about the building, an Ofsted spokesman explained this was “separate from planning and building control and would not have any bearing on planning and building control and vice versa”.

*A Satmar Chasidic boys’ school, Talmud Torah Yetev Lev in Salford, has passed its latest Ofsted check on safeguarding and premises.

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