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BNP teachers likely to escape ban

12 March 2010

Former chief inspector of schools Maurice Smith has recommended that teachers in England and Wales should not be banned from membership of the BNP.

Schools secretary Ed Balls commissioned the report last year after a leaked list identified 15 teachers as party members.

Smith said although police and prison officers were already banned from the party, any move to outlaw membership by teachers was likely to be challenged in the courts.

He said there was insufficient evidence of risk to justify a ban, which would be a “profound political act”.

Smith added that his recommendation against a ban should be reviewed every year.

Balls said there was no place for racism in schools, but incidences of teachers promoting racism were extremely rare.

He has asked for a further review of measures in place at independent schools, where teachers could be unqualified.

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