Why are you opening a Muslim faith school?
In response to demand for a high performing school which can foster community cohesion and promote a better understanding of the Islamic faith across the community, Hujjat Primary will be a Muslim faith designated, school for children of all abilities aged 4-11. Starting with two Reception classes in September 2020, the school will welcome children from all faiths and none, and have capacity for 420 children across seven year groups by 2026.
The team working towards opening Hujjat Primary School understands that true education is not just about acquiring skills and achieving expectations, but facilitating the well-being and growth of every child’s mind, body and spirit in the best possible way. We believe that all parents should have the option of sending their children to a school:
Will you only accept Muslim children?
The school has a Muslim faith designation but our faith curriculum and ethos will focus on character development and will therefore be inclusive to all children. Please see our admissions policy for more information on how places will be allocated.
What opportunities will my child have to meet and work with children of other faiths?
Children will have the opportunity to learn about all faiths, British history, and a variety of cultures whilst developing confidence and pride in their own faith. HPS will provide enriching experiences through links with local schools, encouraging children to engage in sport, academic and other inter-school activities.
Are you accepting applications for all year groups?
Hujjat Primary will be opening in September 2020 with 2 Reception classes only. It will then admit 2 new Reception classes every year until it reaches full capacity in 2026.
When will you be recruiting for positions at the school?
The Headteacher will recruit Reception teachers, Reception teaching assistants, lunchtime staff, premises staff, admin staff and a Business Manager during the Spring/Summer terms prior to September 2020. Please follow us on twitter @HujjatPrimary to stay informed, or visit the website.
Will non-Muslim teachers have to follow a religious dress code?
The school will not impose a religious dress code on staff or pupils. Modesty and dignity are core Islamic values and all staff and pupils will be expected to respect that in their conduct and dress.
What is a Free School?
Free schools are independent schools that are funded by the Department of Education and managed by an Academy Trust rather than a Local Authority. They must be non-profit making, can set their own term dates, and can develop their own curriculum as long as it is broad and includes Maths, English and Science.
How is a faith designated Free School different to other faith schools?
Faith designation is legal recognition that a school has a religious character. This means that the school can provide religious education and collective worship according to the tenets of its chosen faith, and admit up to 50% of pupils on the basis of faith if the school is oversubscribed. Faith designated Free Schools must also commit to being inclusive to all pupils, including those of other and no faith.
How will places be allocated?
Please see our admission policy for more information on how places will be allocated: www.hujjatprimary.org/admissions
Do we have to live in Harrow to attend the school?
No, you do not need to live in Harrow to apply for a place at the school. If there are more applications than spaces, 50% will be allocated on the basis of faith and 50% with no reference to faith. For more information on how places will be allocated, please see our admissions policy: www.hujjatprimary.org/admissions
Will the school provide wraparound care for working parents?
Yes, wraparound care will be available for parents who require it, before and after school. The specific details on the provider and timings will be agreed over the coming months.
Which subjects will you be teaching?
Hujjat Primary will broadly follow the National Curriculum and teachers will therefore deliver all of the subjects detailed in the Government guidance. Subject leaders will identify opportunities for our faith ethos and values to be incorporated into resources used across the curriculum.
Will you teach RSE (Relationship & Sex Education)?
Faith designated Free Schools have additional freedoms around the teaching of Religious Education, PSHCE (Personal, Social, Health, Citizenship and Economic) Education, and RSE. The faith lead will develop and deliver age-appropriate elements of these subjects in line with tenets of the Islamic faith and in the context of Islamic family values. Policies for these subjects will be developed in consultation with the relevant religious bodies and parents.
Will you teach children about puberty (buloogh)?
Our PSHCE (Personal, Social, Health, Citizenship and Economic) curriculum will be developed in line with our faith ethos and values, and will include aspects of puberty at the appropriate time. Other examples of subject matter in PSHCE will include:
- why cleanliness is important in Islam and what this looks like in practice
- manners and etiquette
- social responsibility
- building positive relationships
- the importance of charity
- sustainability and taking care of our planet
- recognising that parents, teachers, religious leaders and other adults are there for guidance but it is up to each one of us to determine the kind of person we become.
Will you teach Music?
Yes, within the context of our Islamic ethos and values. Musical literacy includes learning about sound, verbal expression, composition and developing aural memory.
What does Hujjat mean?
Hujjat is an Arabic word meaning proof or authority. A person with the title Hujjat-al-Islam is regarded as a respected authority on Islamic teachings and law.
What is the relationship between the school and the KSIMCoL (Hujjat) Islamic Centre on Wood Lane?
KSIMCoL is the faith authority for Hujjat Primary School. This means that the school’s governing Board will consult relevant members of the KSIMCoL community on matters relating to the RE curriculum and admissions policy. The KSIMCoL will not be involved in running or managing the school. This is the responsibility of the Hujjat School Trust Board.
Who is on the Hujjat School Trust Board?
The people appointed to the Trust Board will be agreed with the Department for Education by February before the school opens and will be based on the skills required to oversee the success of Hujjat Primary. They will hold the title and responsibilities of Trustee (under Charities Law and in line with the Academies Financial Handbook), Director (under Companies Law) and Governor.
Will children be segregated?
Hujjat Primary will be a co-educational school for children aged 4 to 11. Children will not be segregated for learning except when appropriate, for example, teaching of gender specific aspects of puberty or when changing for PE.
Will Islamic Studies be part of the curriculum?
The Islamic faith ethos and values of our school will be woven throughout the curriculum and will guide teaching, learning and behaviour. In RE, children will learn about all the major faiths from the SACRE syllabus, enriched with guest speakers, shared celebrations and activities with faith school partners where appropriate. Children will be encouraged to share their religious and cultural celebrations, creating opportunities for them to learn from one-another and develop an appreciation for diversity.
Children will also have the opportunity to explore ethical issues, focusing on shared values and common answers to difficult moral questions.
What do you mean when you say that faith will be woven into the way you teach?
Subject leaders, in conjunction with the faith lead, will incorporate appropriate topics, resources and role models throughout the curriculum. For example, studying Islamic geometric design in Maths, learning about scientific and medical advancements made by Muslims during the Islamic Golden Age, studying the lives of Muslim personalities in History and English.
What practical steps will you take to bring faith values to life?
We will adopt a philosophy called Values-based Education (VbE), developed by Dr Neil Hawkes. The underlying aim of this approach is for pupils to not only understand the values but to reflect them in their attitudes and behaviour and to contribute to society through good citizenship and ethical practice. Please see www.valuesbasededucation.com for more information.
Will you allocate time for children to pray?
Reflection time will be built into the day to foster children’s spiritual development. Formal prayer time will be a consideration when preparing the school timetable, and age-appropriate provision will be made for children who wish to pray. The school will also have a designated reflection room that will be available to children during break times.
What about children who don’t want to pray?
All children will be encouraged to reflect on the presence of God in their lives. Alternative provision will be made for children who come from families of no faith.
Which Islamic school of law will you be following?
The Board of Hujjat Primary School is committed to an inclusive and non-denominational approach to Muslim faith education. We will celebrate diversity and ensure inclusivity by focusing on the Prophetic Mission of developing good character.
What time will school start and finish?
Hujjat Primary will broadly follow Harrow term dates with the addition of religious holidays, but we recognise that parents may already have children in other schools and will seek to accommodate this by having staggered drop-off and pick-up times.
Will the school be inspected by OFSTED?
Yes, the school will be inspected by OFSTED. Standards, progress and attainment will be regularly monitored, internally by the school leadership and governing body, and externally with our education partners, to ensure the highest quality provision for all children. The School will also be inspected under Section 48 of the Education Act in order to maintain its designation as a Muslim faith school.
What extra curricular activities will be available?
Extended and extra-curricular activities will be aimed at further developing personal skills, nurturing interests and talents, and developing cultural capital. Clubs may include art, calligraphy, drama, expression, sports, science, life skills and public speaking as well as clubs that support children’s Islamic faith education e.g. Quran recitation, Quran appreciation (contextual understanding using appropriate resources), and preparation for Buloogh (coming of age).
Will children be taught to read the Quran?
Our Foreign Language options will be Spanish or Arabic based on the British Council’s Languages for the Future report ranking these languages as the two most vital to the UK over the next 20 years. Children will be given further opportunities to develop their Quran recitation through extra-curricular clubs and activities.
What is the uniform policy?
Our school uniform will be smart, practical, comfortable, provide value for money and foster a sense of community and common identity across the school. A headscarf will be included as an optional item in the school uniform list but will not be mandatory on any pupil.
Which religious holidays will you observe?
We will consult with SACRE and our religious authority in relation to holidays that will affect the majority of our pupils, and publish term dates accordingly.