An investigation by the Sunday Telegraph has uncovered antisemitism and far-right extremism at Rainhill High School, the nominated school for players enrolled in Liverpool Football Club’s academy. A series of whistleblowers have said that they believe that far-right extremism is endemic at the school, claiming that the management are failing to tackle the problem.
A whistleblower has told the Sunday Telegraph that “The lads have tried measuring other pupils noses to see if they are Jews and shouting ‘we are the SS, kill the Jews’ during a lunch break.” The newspaper was also told that Nazi memorabilia, including a helmet, and a flag associated with white supremacy were paraded through corridors, and that students sometimes “walk around humming Nazi marching music.”
One student was featured in a photo on the front page of the school’s newsletter allegedly giving the “Isis salute”, a gesture of support for the self-proclaimed Islamic caliphate. The headmaster later apologised, saying it was “issued in error” and removed the newsletter from the school’s website.
According to the newspaper, parents and teachers have raised their concerns with Ofsted and their trade union due to fears that the school was failing to tackle the problem. The school, however, has reportedly denied the allegations made in the investigation, but said that three students have been referred through Prevent, the Government’s counter-extremism strategy. One of the students had allegedly desecrated a cenotaph and another who had told a fellow pupil: “you’re so skinny you should be in Auschwitz.”
Headmaster John Pout told the Sunday Telegraph: “In my opinion we have not got an issue with right-wing extremism at Rainhill High School. The three isolated cases that have been brought to our attention have been dealt with quickly and thoroughly. We have been commended by Merseyside Police for our actions on these incidents.”
Pupils at the school have been identified as talented football players and some play for Liverpool Football Club’s under-18 team, but the club declined to give a comment to the Sunday Telegraph.