An innocent teenage Muslim schoolgirl was the victim of a hate crime as she was being picked from school by her mother. The 14-year-old girl, who will not be named for security reasons, was cornered by fellow students in the presence of her mother while teachers looked on.
The teenage mob taunted her and asked what she was doing on the night of the Manchester Arena bombing. They then began abusing her verbally while chanting “ISIS” at her.
The sad incident was captured on mobile phone camera by her mother Farrah Aftab. The footage shows a large crowd of pupils gathering near the car outside the 1,300 pupil Priestnall School in Stockport, Greater Manchester, while teachers stood nearby. The teenager was also compared to a child branded the ‘girl no-one likes’, who appeared in a documentary Educating Yorkshire.
Mrs Aftab has since pulled her daughter from school citing fears for her safety. The 37-year-old mental health worker from Heaton Chapel, said her daughter has been a target since she was in year seven and is constantly made to feel that she has no friends and that no one likes her.
She said: “The children have said to her that she is like the young Muslim girl in educating Yorkshire, who struggled to make friends. It’s like they’re reminding her that no one likes her and it is just unfair. They have called her ISIS and asked her where she was on the night of the Manchester Bombings. It has always been bad but with things that have been going on it has been getting worse. It is racism and bullying and the school don’t seem to be doing anything about it. I am terrified as to what would have happened if we hadn’t gone to get her and if she hadn’t got in the car. I’ve reported this to the police, local MP and the council and the governors of the school.
She added: “On Thursday my husband and I had gone to pick her up from school, sat in car, and before you know it girls and boys are surrounding the car peeping in back windows where she’s sat. She and I was saying go away but the girls hurling abuse at her and shouting ISIS, saying they would break her nose, calling her ugly, saying you watch what happens now. My daughter got out car go to speak to a teacher and she was saying: ‘this is what I have got to put up with – I don’t come to school for this’, but the teachers seemed more concerned with me putting my phone away.
“It seems like she is being punished for being a victim of bullying. We come from a mixed race background as a family and we were raised that we are all equal. What ISIS do has nothing to do with us being Muslims. I have taught my children that if that conversation comes up you do not engage in that conversation its nothing to do with us. Sometimes you think they’re just kids and kids can be kids but when its happening in front of you with a teacher watching and they say I don’t wish to speak to you is disgusting. I’m afraid I just don’t trust the teachers with my children now – they have breached duty of care.”
Greater Manchester Police have been informed of the incident and are currently investigating.
They said: “We are looking into the incident and officers are appealing for anyone with any information to come forward.”
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