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British Muslims to Establish First Free Islamic School

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London: Muslims in the north-western British city of Blackburn are awaiting the approval of plans to build the first free Islamic school in the country to serve both Muslim and non-Muslim students. “The planning application has been submitted following months of detailed design work on what has proven to be a very challenging, but equally rewarding project,” says Principal Jacquie Petriaho. Muslims have applied to the Darwen Council to build a free Islamic school in Blackburn in Lancashire County. The new school aims to provide first-class education for its 700 pupils with the aim of getting many into Britain’s top universities. If approved, the multi-purpose school will open in September 2014. It will be the first free Islamic school in Britain. British Muslims are estimated at 2.5 million. There are 400,000 Muslim students in British schools, according to the Muslim Council of Britain (MCB).