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Should teachers be banned from the BNP?

03:02 UK time, Friday, 12 March 2010

Teachers should not be banned from joining the British National Party, or any group which may promote racism, a review has concluded. Do you agree?

The government commissioned the report last September after a leaked list identified 15 BNP members as teachers.

BNP members are barred from the police and prison service. But review author Maurice Smith said there was currently "insufficient evidence of risk" to ban them from teaching.

Schools Secretary Ed Balls welcomed the report. But the teaching union NASUWT said Mr Smith had "squandered a golden opportunity." It said: "The idea that a person who signs up to membership of the BNP can simply leave these beliefs at the school gate... is risible."

Should teachers be banned from joining the BNP? Would it pose any risk to pupils? Does it matter what a teacher's personal views are? Can they leave their beliefs at the school gate?

This debate has now been closed. Thank you for your comments.


Page 1 of 13

  • Comment number 1.

    While I detest the BNP the correct decision was made. To ban people from any job based purely on party affiliation would have so would have been paramount to a thought crime.

  • Comment number 2.

    So as long they aren't using the position to influence the children’s learning and swing them in favour of BNP voting I see no reason why they should be banned.

    As much as I find the BNP distasteful if you're someone who believes in freedom of speech it would be remarkably hypocritical to believe we should kick someone out of a profession simply based on party affiliation.

  • Comment number 3.

    This has nothing to do with free speech, but is about a person's suitability to do a job. In a school there will be pupils from different backgrounds, different religions and different ethnic groups. Someone who holds the same sorts of views as the BNP is not suitable to work as a teacher.

  • Comment number 4.

    I think for once this report is correct, members of the BNP or any other political party should not be ban for the views. Where would it end? Think Police!

    Also, General Secretary of the NASUWT union Chris Keates said: "The aim should be genuinely to challenge young people to think for themselves and to form their own opinions rather than to promote a particular ideology."

    Then how come they can promote same sex couples as part of children’s education, which in my option is wrong.

  • Comment number 5.

    It's worrying that some educators are ignorant or stupid enough to join this trouble-inciting racist outfit. Nevertheless, we'd be just as stupid or ignorant to think that denying democratic rights to some of our citizens is the answer.

  • Comment number 6.

    Like it or not,the BNP are now a legitimate political party thanks to nearly one million votes in the Euro election.
    NuLabour should blame themselves for the rise of the far-right,thanks to the open door immigration policy,appeasement radical Islam and the destruction of everything British,people have got fed up and turned to this party.
    Maybe BNP teachers will counter act the brainwashing of NuLabours liberal enforced multi culturalism instilled upon children the moment they enter the education system.

  • Comment number 7.

    Surely Marxist Pro Labour teachers are a bigger threat?

  • Comment number 8.

    #3. At 04:10am on 12 Mar 2010, DistantTraveller wrote:
    “This has nothing to do with free speech, but is about a person's suitability to do a job. In a school there will be pupils from different backgrounds, different religions and different ethnic groups. Someone who holds the same sorts of views as the BNP is not suitable to work as a teacher.”

    Well it is kind of to do with free speech though. I mean not all BNP voters are vicious racists; believe it or not, I’ve come across one or two who certainly aren’t. They’re misguided for sure and ignorant maybe but not necessarily racist. Now if a teacher did have racist views and/or was using his or her position to push those views across then I would certainly agree with you and would happily see them removed. However to remove someone from that position simply due to a party affiliation smacks of suppression of free speech to me!

  • Comment number 9.

    Banning membership of a political party, however much you may disagree with their viewpoint, is the first step on a very slippery slope away from democracy.

    Why can't the political mainstream deal with the issues which are turning disenfranchised voters toward the BNP?

  • Comment number 10.

    This comment was removed because the moderators found it broke the house rules. Explain.

  • Comment number 11.

    I am far less worried about A Teacher belonging to the B.N.P, than belonging to an extreme Muslim fundamental group, it is the Muslim extremists who are the real danger, not just to the UK but the whole world.
    I believe rather than banning people from speaking, let them speak, and then decide.
    for example, when Nick Griffin went on question time,some of his ideas were exposed and my impression was he didn't come across well at all and was someone I couldn't trust
    I always remember, during northern Ireland roubles, a top IRA man saying the reason paisley was never a target, was he did the IRA more good than harm, by his radical views and his ranting verbal presentation.
    I think the same could be said about Nick Griffin, the majority of the UK are not stupid enough to fall for his lies.The more debates he is in the better,he will again be made to look foolish every time.

  • Comment number 12.

    I'd expect any teacher regardless of their political and religious views to work and behave properly in a multicultural state school environment. Wearing symbols and badges,attempting to proscelytise and behaving in any kind of discriminatory manner would be disciplinary offences perhaps leading to dismissal. I might dislike the idea of political extremists having access to children but these people always existed in schools and as long as they behave professionally and with sensitivity,I cannot see any reason for denying them the right to work. Once you start going down this route,I can see bans on employing teachers for all manner of reasons,allowing schools to pick and choose staff on the basis of their religion,politics,race,appearance,disability,gender,age and sexuality.

  • Comment number 13.

    Not many of us are fans of the mainstream parties but we can not stop their supporters being teachers. We need to call for an end to the constant erosion of freedom and freedom of speech. This is the right decision.

    And I agree with .9 "Why can't the political mainstream deal with the issues which are turning disenfranchised voters toward the BNP?" Why not indeed. They ignore the issues constantly.

  • Comment number 14.

    I do not see why ANYONE should be banned from ANY legitimate political party. Either the party is legitimate or it is not, so the ruling politicians should have the guts to ban the party and face the political backlash if there is any or they should not forbid anyone to join.
    Looking at it with just a hint of ommon sense what has banning memebership of the party to do with beliefs. How man people in the country actually belong to ANY political party? Alow percentage but that doesn't stop them thinking along certain lines and acting in particular ways.
    Either ban the party or allow anyone to join if they wish.

  • Comment number 15.

    I agree with previous sentiments that there are some pretty nasty elements within mainstream political parties and plenty with no political association. I am much more wary of those that espouse to equality (towards gender, right to belief and ethnicity) but have no intention of putting it into practice than those who are open about their predudice.

    panchopablo is right in saying that its the mainstream parties in their ivory towers that are responsible for the rise in extremists for not supporting the way of life working-class white communities.

  • Comment number 16.

    Absolutely not! Let's be honest, the BNP have the courage to speak what many of us only have the courage think while hiding behind a veil of PC. Put two dogs, one black and one white, in a room with one bowl of food and there will be a fight. It has nothing to do with colour! The British "bowl of food" is no longer big enough to support the numbers entering these islands. What is racist about that? Maybe it is time for the PC brigade to stop quivering in the classroom and offer up a balanced view which does not discriminate against the indigenous peoples. The BNP in education gets my vote!

  • Comment number 17.

    As abhorrent as the BNP is, it is not an illegal organisation and therefore no group should be banned from belonging to it.
    One hopes that any professional person would deal with any situation regarding people in their care without prejudice

  • Comment number 18.

    Back in the 19890's my cousin had a teacher who was Irish and and IRA supporter and brought in his twisted theories into the class. Parents complained but teachers said it was his right to hold such opinions. There are other teachers, extreme Christians and Moslems who have similar opinions as the BNP but they are allowed to teach. Yet the fuss is over teachers who may or may not have belonged to the BNP. This country is amazing. You cannot belong to a political group which is following a democratic path yet you can belong to a group which wants to destroy democracy through bombs and censorship.

  • Comment number 19.

    It's a strange country that boasts freedom of speech as long as it likes what it hears. It's a weird logic that believes the worse a teacher can do is to belong to the BNP.

    This report has it spot on.

  • Comment number 20.

    If BNP members are to be banned from teaching then so should members of all other political parties. Also anyone who is the member of any religious organisation. Then we would have no teaching staff at all?

  • Comment number 21.

    Its always amusing to see this. Teachers should be banned from the BNP in case their views bleed into the classroom however nothing is said about children being indoctrinated by those who believe in archaic, ambigious and barbaric religious doctrines, in fact we throw public money at it. I think that teaching children that homosexuality is a moral disorder or that Jews are animals is just as contemptuous as teaching them that some races are more superior than others.

  • Comment number 22.

    No, of course not!

    There is no place for thought police in society. Anyone can think what they like as far as I am concerned. It is only actions that should be dealt with appropriately. No matter how Labour would like to police our thoughts it will never happen!

  • Comment number 23.

    BNP members are human beings and live normally in British society. They are perfectly capable of keeping their political views to themselves in the school environment, the same as any teacher with a strong religious view, or political view, or any other strong opinion for that matter. This is simply trying to make BNP members into some kind of monsters who are looking to promote world domination and subvert every child's mind it comes in contact with. It wasn't that long ago the West was paranoid about communism - look where that took us.
    Labour need to start looking at their own methods of indoctrinating our school children with their dogma before pointing fingers at other legitimate politcal party members.

  • Comment number 24.

    I do not think we should ban any teacher in BNP. They should carry on working, but we should make them understand the the whole history of Great Britain. Many of them are ignorant of it. All the invations, the trouble of the past, the colonisation and slavery. They will then know that everybody in Britain are foreigners, and Britain went into other peoples countries before they come to her.'what goes round, comes round.'

  • Comment number 25.

    From a neutral's point of view it shouldn't matter so long as they are a good teacher and don't promote their political ideology.

    However how would parents feel about their children being taught by a BNP party member, particularly if you were non-white or non-British?

    If parents are allowed to have their children removed from sex and religious education should they be allowed to have their children removed from a BNP teacher's class?

  • Comment number 26.

    I find multicuturalist views highly distateful. Does that mean i have the right to demand those that promote it get fired?

    After all it is nothing but a cynical program to do what Britich governments have always done, control the people by divide and rule.

    Uts excellent in its outcome. It divdes people by ethnicity and recalls that age old problem we had consigned to history, namely religious dfferences.

    The BNP may be a trouble making outfit full of nasty indivduals, but they don't run the country (into the ground). I know which problem has the higher priority.

  • Comment number 27.

    Distant Traveller wrote:
    "Someone who holds the same sorts of views as the BNP is not suitable to work as a teacher"
    What absolute rubbish. You will be saying next that a member of the Conservative party can't teach children from poor areas or an SNP member can't teach English children. Where do we draw the line.
    So long as they are not forcing their views on the children there is no problem.
    Too many freedoms, including free speech, in this country are being eroded and this sort of ridiculous comment, and the people who make it, are at the heart of that erosion.

  • Comment number 28.

    So far the government have made the right decision. However anyone banned from working in the job that they are qualified to do for spurious reasons will be able to claim unfair dismissal and social security for ever or until the ban is lifted. That is my view on the subject. The idea is typical PC rubbish from this failed government and its lackies.

  • Comment number 29.

    I don't like the BNP - I don't trust them. However, the best way to tackle them is through sane and rational debate and facts. If we ban the BNP we then should look at others with religious views that are extreme - and I don't mean Muslims - how about homophobic catholic teachers - shall we ban them also.

  • Comment number 30.

    This comment was removed because the moderators found it broke the house rules. Explain.

  • Comment number 31.

    Of course teachers should not be banned based on membership of a political party - I find Labour particularly odious, yet I don't scream for Labourites to be banned from classrooms. For Chris Keates to imply that these teachers are less than professional is standing into danger - they studied, learned and passed the required professional courses. Would she be making such sweeping judgements about teachers who beat their partners, those that drink to excess, those that use recreational drugs, who live alternative lifestyles, those who follow religions that are not mainstream - or is she simply appeasing the union membership with soundbites? She should be concentrating on ensuring that checks and controls are in place that make the learning experience for all children a valuable one in which they are guided (not directed) to make up their own minds on the whole slew of issues that will affect them as they grow up.

  • Comment number 32.

    Of course it should be allowed, like all other paid public workers, as long as they do their job properly.

  • Comment number 33.

    Well, look at that! I log on to the Internet, go to the BBC website and the top story is again about the BNP. I thought it was a bit of a non-story to be honest. I knew it would inflame a few people on HYS so I came here ... and lo and behold. I wasn't even surprised to see anti-BNP comments, as we all expect, but people are/will even have a go at the current government. More electioneerinig on the part of the BBC I feel.

  • Comment number 34.

    I AGREE. It is shocking that they even considered banning members of a legal political party.

    I am sick and tired of our loony-left government trying to police our every thought.

    Victory for democracy I say. May can not come soon enough.

  • Comment number 35.

    Would we allow members of The Klu Klux Klan, or supporters of the Taliban to be teachers?

    Maybe on the basis of fairness we should! But along with supporters of the Racist BNP I damned well wouldn't want them teaching my children or stinking up the Staff room.

  • Comment number 36.

    No, they should not, this is the correct decision all day long. In a country which has supposedly free speach and presumably free thought anyone, whether they be teachers or any other profession should be allowed to express thier views and join a political party or any oither group for that matter however much others disagree. I'm a little puzzled as to why organisations like the police do not allow membership, after all it is a political party with elected members.

  • Comment number 37.

    If the BNP ever won a majority vote in a general election (yes, I know!) and came into government, would the public stand by and let them push their views into the mainstream school curriculum. No.
    Yet we stand by and let our current government do exactly the same as they push their views and social ideals into the curriculum, regardless of teachers' personal views. Those teachers are professional enough to teach what they are told regardless of personal belief. Give the teaching profession some credit please.

  • Comment number 38.

    This comment was removed because the moderators found it broke the house rules. Explain.

  • Comment number 39.

    In their own words, the BNP condemn themselves -

    “Rape is simply sex. Women enjoy sex, so rape cannot be such a terrible physical ordeal… [It] is like suggesting forcefeeding a woman chocolate cake is a heinous offence.”
    Then BNP London organiser and GLA candidate, Nick Eriksen

    AIDS is “a friendly disease because blacks, drug users and gays have it.”
    Mark Collett, leader of the Young BNP on Channel 4 in 2004

    People with these views should not teach children.

  • Comment number 40.

    Perhaps the teaching union could apply its thinking to those of a religious bent, after all in my opinion the views of various religions are far more extreme than anyone from the BNP. the BNP says what it thinks, regardless of whether you like it or not, at least you know where you stand. Some, in fact many religions simply cannot bring themselves to tell it like it is, they preach one thing and do another. If I had a choice I know which one I would prefer to be a teacher.

  • Comment number 41.

    If we ban teachers from the BNP, they should also be banned from all other parties.

  • Comment number 42.

    Children are more at risk from New Labour's indoctrination than the BNP. While you may not like the BNP its not democratic to try and exclude them. I would much rather concentrate on ridding ourselves of New Labour and restoring the country than side issues. BNP is a result of New Labour policies so lets get rid of the cause first.

  • Comment number 43.

    If the BNP are bad then they should be a "proscribed" organisation like the extreamist Islamist organisations that propagate hate. If they are not then it's members can't be lawfully denied employment. If the BNP are bad then either
    1) Change employment law ?
    2) Change the rules and regs about CRB checks for people working with children and what people who work with children can belong to politically ?
    3) Change the race relations act ?
    4) Ban the BNP for security reasons under the terrorism act?
    5) Review our law compared to the law in Germany and see how right wing parties are dealt with and do the same so there can be no whinging to the court of european human rights given precidents set.
    All of this requires people to lobby govt get the Govt of the day to motivate MP's to sort things out. Or people to enter politics and get things sorted out.
    Good luck with all of that...

  • Comment number 44.

    Should Klu Klux Klan members be allowed to teach blacks; neo-Nazis, Jews? At what point do we say your beliefs are so loathsome and invidious that the State should be compelled to punish you? I say never, no matter what sickened beast is leashed within your head, until thoughts beget words beget actions. So BNP members should be able to teach, and indeed to serve in the police or prison service, as long as the beast remains chained within. Take away everything else, strip and starve, but as long as we are free to think we are human.

  • Comment number 45.

    For once a review that makes sense.. Racism works both ways and to single out an organisation that leans in one direction would be totally unjust.

    I would however not put it past this Government trying to force everyone to think that their view is the right one....

  • Comment number 46.

    No worker should be banned from a place of employment because of their political beliefs, to do so would constitute discrimination against the employee.

    Racism is rife in the UK not only because of the ongoing Islamic situation, but also within ethnic groups who continue to war amongst themselves within there own communities. Britain is now a multi cultural society with multi cultural problems, these problems affect every individuals choice as everyone has a right to protect their family and future.

    Freedom of choice should not be given with one hand then removed with the other just because we don’t agree with that individuals choice, to remove that choice makes our country a country run by dictatorship not democracy.

  • Comment number 47.

    No way.

  • Comment number 48.

    This comment was removed because the moderators found it broke the house rules. Explain.

  • Comment number 49.

    This is the result of New Labour dogmatic policies - if you dont like it, ban it, impose fines on it, make laws against it, or simply rubbish it. New Labour is simply undemocratic and authoritarian. Never mind stopping the BNP from teaching, lets stop New Labour from destroying any further, what was a fine country.

  • Comment number 50.

    Definitely not! They should be banned from teaching!

    WE know many of the BNP members are racists, now how can you trust a teacher who is a BNP member to treat an ethnic minority child equally? WE dont want to hear about it but there are many racist teachers who mark down and even fail these pupil because of the colour of their skin. Putting them down making them feel useless, which in turn can cause them to become disruptive. After all if they are supposedly doing badly why should they bother trying at all!

    A bad decision by the government!

  • Comment number 51.

    Freedom of speach can leave a nasty taste in your mouth from time to time.

    If a teacher strays from the path set for him/her then you may have a case, but private beliefs; are just that.

  • Comment number 52.

    I find the views and policies of the Conservative, New Labour and British National parties offensive for a variety of reasons. However, providing their members do their jobs properly and without attempts at indoctrination if they are teachers they should keep their jobs.

  • Comment number 53.

    Would you also ban islamists who also have very strong opions on homosexuality, sexual segregation, dress code?

  • Comment number 54.

    Of course teachers and others should be allowed to join any political party. This government has already taken away our rights in many areas ... they'd like to have our rights to 'think' but there's a way to go yet.

    The current government has only itself to blame for the rise and rise of the BNP and the far right. They have consistently favoured those who would change our ways of life with no good reason. The majority of people don't want Sharia Law and would rather hear church bells than muezzin.

    This country rightly has a reputation for tolerance as a nation but both government and some religionists follow their own agendas in the face of the majority. Such existed in pre-war Germany and we must be careful not to repeat those mistakes.

  • Comment number 55.

    If you ban a teacher on their beliefs weather political or not then you have to ban any teacher who is muslim, christian, or athiest.

    These types of stories are posted to sell news papers and have no place in modern society. This would be persecution of a person on there political views.

    Where do we stop!

    I once thought we lived in a free society - that is turning into a distant memory!

  • Comment number 56.

    Of course this government would attack other parties, in the run up to a general election, with whatever ammunition is at their disposal. This just goes to show that their arsenal is so depleted now that they have to resort to lame discriminatory tactics. They clearly have lost all credibility.

  • Comment number 57.

    This comment was removed because the moderators found it broke the house rules. Explain.

  • Comment number 58.

    "How could this rubbish be enforced? unless they have a list of all the people who vote for The would be the same as saying Sorry no muslim teachers' or Devil worshippers, allowed in this school, because you may be a member of a government banned organization? and you may teach Jihad to your pupils? The human rights lobby, would take the school governers' and headmaster to the high court and bleed them dry.

  • Comment number 59.

    Does it matter? I would hope no teacher was going into schools preaching their politics. Nor would I expect a religious sermon during biology.

  • Comment number 60.

    They cannot be banned from teaching in a democratic society. However, If it is ever shown that they have incited racist attitudes in children then they should be removed from the post.

  • Comment number 61.

    Why ban somebody because of a political opinion? I don't like the BNP, but I think that they shouldn't be banned from taking up a teaching job.

  • Comment number 62.

    Perhaps we should also consider other potential sources of influence. Are not single-faith schools equally in a position to indoctrinate? Where should we draw the line?

    In an open and tolerant society, I believe there should be a clear distinction between education based on fact and and creative ability, and education based on opinion, rhetoric and unproven belief.

  • Comment number 63.

    As a schoolboy in the 1930s my late father had a rather good maths teacher. This man was suddenly sacked from his post because he was involved with Oswald Moseley's Blackshirt Party. All this succeeded in doing was to elicit sympathy from my father and his fellow pupils which he continued to remember over sixty years later: "He was a damned fool for getting mixed up with the fascists, but he was a good teacher and didn't deserve the sack."

  • Comment number 64.

    Why ban them. I think this is still a free country unless NuLabour have "slipped " some spurious piece of legislation through .

    I do not agree with the BNP's policies, nor do I agree with the Labour Party, but it is still a free country !

  • Comment number 65.

    As a teacher, my political views - like my religious belief, choice of footie team, favourite band, etc. - are a private matter.

    Any attempt to control which political party, if any, a teacher chooses to support can only be a blanket ban on ALL of them, not cherry-picking one which certain folks don't agree with.

  • Comment number 66.

    No the BNP have made people and main stream parties think twice about what they are doing to Great Britain, besides British people have voted them into the EU as MEPs.

  • Comment number 67.

    No, if an organisation is legal anyone should be free to join it. Why is this even a debate? If the BNP is so suspect it is thought a teacher should not belong to it then the political party should be banned.

  • Comment number 68.

    How about banning political party leaders from using school visits for photo opportunities?

  • Comment number 69.

    If BNP members were to be banned then so should all other teachers with political affiliations: wouldn't help the Labour party as many teachers are openly left wing.......

  • Comment number 70.

    Banning people from public sector employment because of their political beliefs is a fascist act.

  • Comment number 71.

    All this user's posts have been removed.Why?

  • Comment number 72.

    Being a member of the BNP amounts to profound ignorance. Quite ironic for a teacher.

  • Comment number 73.

    Yes and whilst we're at it lets ban any religion from schools as well, its a subject that's unproven, yet is taught as though its fact.

  • Comment number 74.

    Some commentors have referred to BNP's 'legality' and their choice to 'take the democratic path', so let me clarify exactly what that means. On 14 February, after decades of exclusion of non-Caucasians in their constitution, BNP responded to a legal threat to have their qualification to run in elections withdrawn by amending out that provision. Technically, the court ruling on the new BNP constitution wording does not happen until today, 12 March. The hearing on 9 March questioned that wording, which requires views which may be considered racist.

    So the report above has jumped the gun a bit, maybe, but Mr. Smith seems not to care whether teachers have actually signed up to be racist, a legal question not yet resolved.

    In 1925, the German NSDAP (Nazis) separated the SA thugs from their party, leaving a technically legal election organisation. The rules are different now, due to the unpleasantness of the early '40's, but I expect to soon see a BNP-supporting gang like the security team that ejected a Times reporter from the 14 February meeting. That was said by BNP to be because of Times 'lies'. So much for free speech.

  • Comment number 75.

    No one should be discriminated against for belonging to a legitimate political party. If I were discriminate against someone because that person belonged to a trade union or the Labour party, I’d be in court. The Labour Government and trade unions quite rightly promote anti discrimination laws, but it is they who are the biggest discriminators of them all. They seem to believe they have the right to discriminate against others when others do not tow the party line, hypocritical or what.

  • Comment number 76.

    I agree with many of the comments so far, I suppose if the Teachers (who by the way should be ashamed of themselves) do not try to influence pupils with their bigoted predjudices thats as far as we can go to retain a semblance of freedom.
    It worries me however that these people are deemed fit to be in such positions, if you retrospectively applied the same argument to the 1930's and the Nazi Party or Mosley's Facists how many people would think that its would be okay now for these Political movements to have teachers in their schools.

  • Comment number 77.

    a. No one should be barred from joining any party they wish to join. It is their privelege.
    b. People should be given right information about why they should not join and what stance they may be forced to take when they join.
    c. Not all BNP activities or intensions are well publicised and they should not regret when they find out too late.

  • Comment number 78.

    I am currently studying business studies at university and wished to go into teaching. Previously my political convictions stopped me from doing so but now I have the career that I have chosen open to me.

    I do not wish to impart my political leanings onto school children, not only is it thoroughly unprofessional, they are my personal beliefs which shouldn't be voiced in a forum such as a classroom.

    Call me racist, call me what you will, I am who I am and this is the one decent thing Labour has done in years!

  • Comment number 79.

    I don't believe people should be banned from a job as a result of membership of a political party...... on the other hand, I think the BNP is probably an illegal party, if its policies were properly studied. It sails close to the wind of illegality all the time, as the court cases demonstrate. In the case that the BNP were judged an illegal party, the view would be quite different. Having an inquiring mind..... I check their web site. I think anybody writing here should do the same before publishing their opinion.

  • Comment number 80.

    So many racist people are not in the BNP - why persecute those who join it? If you ban teachers from joinin the BNP - then there is an argument to ban tachers who join UKIP - a party that can be seen as a 'racist' anti-europe party. Communist and neo-conservative teachers could be seen as dangerous as one believes in the state being overthrown and the other believes that money is everything - dangerous concepts for young children to be taught in a 'biased' way. The BNP has already lost any chance of gainin power - as nobody wants to go back to a feudal society which is what their policies would lead to. Free speech should allow people to join stupid political parties - that stupid people are allowed to teach is a different topic altogether!!

  • Comment number 81.

    We can't choose what religion or what background our teachers are from so we can't choose what there political stance they take.
    The day we start selecting people by what political party people belong to we become nothing better than the Nazi regime that the BNP aspire to!
    If any teacher discriminates on the grounds of religious or political beliefs then we can hold them to account if necessary.

  • Comment number 82.

    Keep politics out of the classroom left or right views and teach our children some decent education for a change.

  • Comment number 83.

    Sure as long as they keep their gob shut about their awful beliefs. No teacher should talk about their own politcal or religious views nor should those beliefs cause a bias in their teaching otherwise they should be banned from teaching for life.

  • Comment number 84.

    No they should not be banned.

    At the same time, a reported muslim phamacist has refused to provide contraceptive medication on the grounds of their religious beliefs.

    I believe this pharmasist should be banned.

    It is one thing to believe in a mystical super powerful planet creating superbeing with life & death & planet forming powers, but it is something else to refuse someone medication on the grounds of those beliefs.

    This type of religious behaviour takes us back to the dark ages, when religious zealots decided the fate of peoples lives and condemned whole nations to live in fear and to die from religiously dictatorial health remedies & practices.

    I consider all religions to be far more abhorant than the BNP and I do not see why BNP members cannot be in the police or anywhere else, as long as they act with decency, fairness and justice to all. I am not in the BNP, nor do I support them,. I do support freedom of belief, as long as that belief is not promoted by and as part of someones professional function.
    Why mainly pick on BNP as racist.

    There is much inward and outward endemic tribalism/racism within minority cultures. All it takes is to have the wrong name or be from the wrong region, be from a different religious group, be from a different country. Just look at the horrendous murderous behaviour in Nigeria, Rwanda in Pakistan and also India.

    There is much hatred between cultures and the BNP is the least of this.

    It seems to me that the UK freedom to believe is nonsensical, you can hold religious views and use those views to be biased & escape rules/regulations & laws and even withold medication, but you cannot have personal political views and be a fireman.

    I think modern Britain, is a messed up place.

  • Comment number 85.

    BNP should not be banned from school. I am of an Asian origin and do not agree with BNP's policies. However, there may be teachers whose strong religious views I may not agree with either. Teacher's political views, nor their religious beliefs should matter as long as they DO NOT interfere with teaching. That is matter of their personal choice. Lets not go mad.

  • Comment number 86.

    If we ban BNP teachers then we should ban ultra left wing teachers. I can honestly say that in the 1970’s ‘when I were a lad’ whilst I was in bog standard comprehensives I had many teachers who did their best to put over their left wing views to their pupils often in the most insidious ways.
    The fact my father was in HM Forces was like a red rag to a bull to some of these left wing teachers and it was only when my father was posted overseas and I attended British Forces Schools (Hong Kong was brilliant) where ALL the teachers kept their personal political views to themselves.
    Teachers should be able to support and join any political party they wish as long as they do not bring their views into the classroom.

  • Comment number 87.

    All this user's posts have been removed.Why?

  • Comment number 88.

    I wonder what the sentiment on this board would be regarding "freedom of speech" etc if said teacher was openly an Al Qaeeda or Taleban supporter? It seems distasteful whites are treated very very differently than distasteful non-whites.

    Treatment of extremists should be the same across the board.

  • Comment number 89.

    I can't understand how all of these politicians and 'watchmen' completely fail to understand democracy.

    Until you ban the BNP you cannot ban people from being a member of it.

    This current campaign to add teachers to the list of public sector workers who cannot be members is a joke. How many teachers smoke? Ban them?

    If you take the attitude that teachers are an example to youth then you may as well pry into the private lives of every teacher and ban them from... pre-marital sex, swearing, drinking, watching films rated other then 'U', eating meat, treading on the cracks in the pavement.

    I hate the BNP. But I hate this McCarthyism that is being used to hound it more.

  • Comment number 90.

    I don't necessarily agree with the policies of the BNP like most people. But you cannot have one rule for one and not the other. Therefore I believe the correct decision was made.

  • Comment number 91.

    This is the Correct decision. This country is an 'ALLEGED' democracy. People from all walks of life and Professions should be able to vote however they choose. The upcoming TV Political debates should also include these groups.

  • Comment number 92.

    Why should this be an issue? Are teachers required to declare their political affiliations or past voting records on taking up a post? Hopefully not, or we are on the slippery slope to the Soviet Union. As long as they are not propagating their political views, there is no case to answer.

  • Comment number 93.

    Oh what a helter skelter of a slippery slope we ride.......In the sixties and seventies colleges were inundated with left wing teachings, and in some cases extreme marxism, but no cried out then to ban these teachers/lecturers.
    In fact in some cases where questions were asked in exams unless the answer was in the affirmative ie left wing. then one could actually be marked down.
    I can hear the baying loud and clear even now that I could suggest such a thing, but the question I would ask is what poses the most danger, left wing or right wing.
    To my mind everyone has the right to their own views as long as those views are not adversely drummed into students.
    As long as all veiws can be debated on any subjected, so individuals can make their own minds up is fine but and his rub, how does one monitor such things. Do we have two teachers in a class to see what is going on.
    Too review a the matter every year does suggest the panel were wrestling with a PC way out of actually banning the BNP from all teaching posts.
    As the NASSUWT have cried a golden opportunity missed does suggests that another view other than a left wing view is not required in schools.
    One can also argue that all left wing teachers should be banned.

  • Comment number 94.

    So long as teachers keep their personal views to themselves regarding politics and religion then there should not be a problem.

  • Comment number 95.

    "This has nothing to do with free speech, but is about a person's suitability to do a job. In a school there will be pupils from different backgrounds, different religions and different ethnic groups. Someone who holds the same sorts of views as the BNP is not suitable to work as a teacher/"

    utter rubbish, there are various religious groups that would not like the idea of a gay teacher or others who are racially motivated (other than the BNP). is that to say that someone should not be taught by a gay person, the danger being they will become gay as well?

  • Comment number 96.

    So, a pharmacist can within legal regulations withold contraceptive medication on grounds of their theological religious views, but someone who believes in a particular political idealism is said to be unsuitable for certain public jobs and cannot be a fireman.

    Is it because that religious people can and do actually act biasedly, that there is an expectation that people with political beliefs can and may also act biasedly. Even Torys & Labour/Lib Dem councils & MPs act biasedly against others and especially against opposition social groups.

    If this is the case then surely by the same reasoning, no-one who holds any religious views should be in a range of jobs, because those religious people are more so governed by their religions indoctrine. Whether it's Catholicism and their refusal for contraception or also muslims who hold similar anti contraception medication beliefs, as in this weeks reported case.

  • Comment number 97.

    Bearing in mind that the political spectrum can be best described as a horseshoe, why is the extreme left-wing tolerated but the extreme right-wing vilified? Before the rants about Nazi Germany start, consider Stalin's Russia, Mao's China and Pol Pot's Khmer Republic.

    If we do believe in freedom of speech, we should not discriminate on the basis of membership of legal political parties. It seems that madrassas, some of which promote radicalisation of their students and consequent increased likelihood of domestic terrorism, are met with a form of strained tolerence while the employment of people that belong to a party concerned with a continuance of a British identity is met with howls of anguish from those who believe that Britons should wear sackcloth and ashes to apologise to the rest of the world for the 300 years of active imperialism while, in fact, Britons were doing what the rest of the world has been doing for the last 10000 years!

    Hypocrisy is rife among these activists: freedom of speech apparently means freedom to speak provided that the activists agree with what's being said. We are in serious danger of censorship by indirect means: we've already had the Politically Correct phase and now we seem to be approaching suppression by association. If we continue along this path, in 20 years time, either we will have Thought Crime or Enoch Powell will have been provide to have been correct - albeit 50 years late.

    I would prefer to avoid both of these outcomes: allow legitimate debate by persons from all legal parties. Conversely, take positive action against those radical groups that have been outlawed - they have been outlawed because of an identified threat to this country.

  • Comment number 98.

    It is good to see that the Government have had a U-turn on their discrimitary dealings with teachers who love their race and nation and only wish to preserve it.

  • Comment number 99.

    I don't see how a BNP member can teach, given what the party believes.

    Remember, we're talking about fully paid up members of the party here, not people who just vote BNP. To be a fully paid up member you've got to understand what the party's aims are and almost definitely hold some pretty frightening beliefs.

    I don't think it's right to ban them from teaching, but I struggle to see how their beliefs can be married up with the classroom. How can they treat a kid fairly if they don't think should even be in the classroom?

    I, for one, would withdraw my child from any class I knew was being taught by a BNP member.

    There is no place for the BNP in any civilised society and the sooner they implode the better.

  • Comment number 100.

    I am sure there are many in the Labour party would love a situation where ALL teachers are banned UNLESS they are Labour party members. Starting with the BNP would be the thin end of the wedge.


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