A Birmingham mosque where clerics were secretly filmed allegedly preaching hate against homosexuals and non-Muslims is opening a fee-paying school.
Students at the £3,500-a-year Green Lane Masjid Independent Boys School will be expected to memorise the Quran and wear traditional Pakistani uniforms when it opens this September.
Arabic will be the “key language” taught to its annual intake of 20 students, aged 11-16, who will also be following the national GSCE curriculum in traditional subjects, like the sciences and geography.
The recently-refurbished £1.5 million two-storey school building adjoins the main mosque in Small Heath and boasts six classrooms, a state-of-the-art science laboratory and new gym.
Green Lane Masjid sparked controversy in 2008 when a Channel 4 TV documentary, titled Undercover Mosque, showed secret footage of Islamic scholars allegedly peddling hate against homosexuals and non-Muslims.
It led to West Midlands Police reporting the broadcaster to the regulator OFCOM for misrepresenting the preachers, but the complaint was rejected and the force later made an apology.
Mosque spokesman Ifaan Raza said the new school intended to “have a secular side as well as an Islamic side”.
He said: “We will be treating the students as young adults and expose them to a variety of opinions and it is up to them to make up their own minds as to what is right or wrong in the eyes of Islam.”
He added the school did not operate a Muslim-only policy and he welcomed applications from children of different faiths.
He said: “The school welcomes all, whether they are Christian, Jew or whatever background.
“We also plan to open a girls’ school and we are also looking at opening a primary school.
“At the moment we are sifting through applications for this year and will be conducting final interviews very soon.”
The school will be an independent charity that will be controlled by the mosque committee, which will perform the role of traditional school governors.