Independent Luton school criticised for poor hygiene

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An independent Islamic school in Luton has received further criticism from Ofsted following its latest inspection – with claims of poor hygiene beside poor teaching.

Olive Tree Primary School on Bury Park Road was inspected in November and in the newly published report, Ofsted raised a number of health and safety concerns.

The report stated: “Pupils do not have the necessary resources to be hygienic when using the toilets.

“Boys do not have toilet tissue, soap or hand-drying facilities available in the toilets. They have to ask an adult in class for toilet tissue.

“Girls have discarded food out of their toilet windows, and the debris is rotting in the security bars.

“Little is done to maintain a clean environment and promote good hygiene skills.

“Pupils bring their own food to school because there is no facility for the school to provide food for pupils. Pupils wash their cutlery in the toilet basins, where only tepid water is available.”

The inspection also found that generally, the school was not reaching the standards to be expected of an independent school, with insufficient progress being made in areas of reading and maths.

It found boys were sometimes disrespectful to female staff members and had to be prompted to show respect.

During the last inspection in May 2017, some inappropriate books were found in the school’s library.

Although leaders stated they had removed them, inspectors found the same books during this inspection. The books are by an author with extreme views about capital punishment and who is banned from the UK.

Two safeguarding issues were reported to Ofsted after the last inspection and a visit by Luton Borough Council last September recorded concerns about the school leaders’ ability to make changes.