On Saturday 3rd February, the Aziz Foundation hosted leading practitioners and academics that work in the supplementary education sector at our offices to gather their thoughts on ways to improve the standards in Islamic supplementary schools.
A third of Muslims in Britain are under 15* and this population of young Muslims is growing year on year as are the number of Muslim educational institutions. However, many of these institutions struggle to provide adequate resources and facilities as community needs also grown. Moreover, there is an infrastructural lack of professional training or development specifically for the individuals who run educational institutions created for Muslim communities.
Muslim supplementary schools see thousands of new students coming into the sector every year and this is a huge opportunity to make an impact on the next generation. The Foundation has therefore prioritised work focused on supplementary schools as part of our Community Empowerment work and launched a pilot project that aims to co-ordinate and develop Muslim institutions and the systems they operate in. In the long term this will include work with mosques, community centres, humanitarian charities and social welfare initiatives.
Representatives at Saturday’s workshop included individuals from Warwick University; Safar Academy (a leading Islamic book publisher); Rashidun School, Oak Education, Alimiyaa School and the World Federation who have their own supplementary schools. They were joined by representatives from the Association of Muslim Supplementary Schools and National Resource Centre for Supplementary Education. Many attendees emphasised the need for governance support for Islamic supplementary schools that already exist
*Source: British Muslims in Numbers (2015)