Schoolgirl looses veil case

A 12 year old school girl has failed in an attempt to legal challenge to her school’s ban on a full face veil.

The school, in Buckinhamshire, had informed the girl that it was unacceptable for her to wear a niqab as the school believed it would make communication and learning difficult.

The Judge rejected her lawyer’s arguments for a judicial review.

In his judgment, Mr Justice Silber stressed that he was dealing with one particular case and not the wider issue of where the niqab should be worn in schools or anywhere else.

Mr Justice Silber stated that the ban was “proportionate” in the light of certain factors including:-

  • The veil prevented teachers from seeing a pupils facial expressions – a key element in effective classroom interaction;
  • The necessity to enforce a school uniform policy under which girls of different faiths would have a sense of equality and identity

The girls’ solicitor stated “we believe there are a number of errors in the decision that have led Mr Justice Silber to reach the wrong conclusions”.

Last year, the law lords ruled that a Luton School was justified in banning the jilbab, a long gown.