Very interesting developments in Britain over the role of religious schooling. Why should Jews (or any religion, for that matter) have the right to determine who is “really” Jewish? It’s a complex question that often leads to exclusion rather than inclusion:
A Jewish school was guilty of racial discrimination in the way it operated its admissions policies, the Supreme Court ruled today.
The JFS school in Brent, north-west London one of the top-performing schools in the country – refused a place to a boy because it did not consider his mother to be Jewish.
Whilst his father was Jewish by birth, his mother entered the Jewish faith by conversion at a progressive synagogue not recognised by orthodox jews.
Today, by a slim five to four majority, judges dismissed an appeal against a ruling that the admissions procedure breached the Race Relations Act.
However, they made it clear that they did not believe the school had acted in a “racist” way.
“Any suggestion or implication that they are racist in the popular sense of the word can be dismissed,” said Lady Hale, one of the nine judges.