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No school for Willesden Green boy, 8, who goes ‘up and down’ Islamia Primary School’s waiting list

PUBLISHED: 15:23 23 October 2018 | UPDATED: 11:09 12 November 2018

Seynab Ahmed, who cannot get a school place for her son. Picture: Seynab Ahmed

Seynab Ahmed, who cannot get a school place for her son. Picture: Seynab Ahmed

Archant

A Willesden Green mother forced to home school her son can’t understand why a faith school that took her daughters won’t accept him.

Seynab Ahmed’s son Musab Hammache, eight, has been “going up and down” Islamia Primary School’s (IPS) waiting list since 2016.

His younger sister Aisha is currently a pupil at the oversubscribed school in Salusbury Road, which his three older siblings also attended.

Mrs Ahmed, who lives in St Paul’s Avenue, said: “Musab’s been on the waiting list since 2016. We came back from abroad and his sisters got in but not him. He was number two on the waiting list, then number 4. He’s never been offered a space and I don’t know why.”

She said the council had offered her three “inappropriate” alternative schools. “They offered him a place at Newfield Primary School in Harlesden telling me it’s near my house, but it’s not. It’s not doable when I have to drop my daughter at Islamia at 8.30am.

“When I contacted Salusbury Primary School and Malorees they told me they had no spaces.

IPS head Babar Mirza said he could not comment on individual cases but added the school’s admissions policy “adheres to the admissions code”. “Our policy has been approved by Brent Council and the Office of the Schools Adjudicator,” he said. “We are a fully regulated school.

“The waiting list is not static as we constantly receive applications throughout the year, which means that children can move up and down the waiting list.”

Independently led appeal hearings are held twice a year for parents who are “unhappy” with the process, she added.

Brent’s schools chief Cllr Amer Agha said: “Voluntary Aided Schools are responsible for their own school admissions and it is the school, not the council, who makes the decision to offer places according to the criteria of their published admission policy.”

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