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How Religious Schools Disappear From Sweden

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There used to be about fifteen Muslim schools in Sweden. Now, only two remain. The other ones have disappeared.

Muslim schools have been at the centre of debate when it comes to the future of denominational schools in Sweden, Dagen reports. And that future is quite uncertain, reality shows.

Al-Azhar School, Iman School and Framsteg School are only a few examples of schools that disappeared from the neighbourhood recently. The closures have proceeded so far by now that only two Islamic schools are still open.

The Cordoba International School in Stockholm is another example of a school closing. The National Security Service of Sweden had warned that several employees of the educational institute were linked to Islamic extremists. As a result, the School Inspectorate withdrew the permit of the school altogether.

That means that the approximately 500 students must now find another school to attend. But if they insist on finishing their school at an Islamic institute, this will be hard as there are only two Muslim schools functioning yet.

Christian

What do these closures mean for Christian schools, which form the majority of denominational schools in Sweden?

Jan Rosman, chairman of the Christian Free School Council, points out to Dagen that the Muslim schools have been closed mainly because of management failure, not because of the Islamist teachings in the classrooms, he says to Dagen.

At the same time, he notices that Christian schools are dragged along in the debate on religious schools in Sweden. He describes the climate in Sweden as a “general mistrust of religion”.

Several political parties, both from the right and left sides of the spectrum, are doing their best to push a ban on religious education. Thus far, they have not achieved more than stricter inspections of religious schools.

At the same time, no Christian schools have been closed yet. Some are close to shut-down, but the reason for that is linked more to a lack of student resources and has nothing to do with the management of the school, as is the case with the closure of many Muslim schools, Rosman says.

Secular

One of the main proponents of a ban on religious schools is Leftist leader Johan Pehrson. However, he is criticised for arguing the exact opposite three days earlier, Varlden Idag writes. “Children should not be exposed to radicalisation and indoctrination. The liberals want to ban religious free schools completely. The school must be secular and convey knowledge”, Pehrson wrote on X. He did so in reaction to the news that a Muslim school had been closed because of mismanagement.

Three days earlier, he had presented himself as standing up “for openness, tolerance and freedom of religion” when he criticised the statement of Sweden Democratic leader Jimmie Åkesson about demolishing mosques that spread anti-democratic ideas.

Source : CNE

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