UK Government apologises to Italian families over ethnicity question in school census

Exclusive: 'We are mindful that this is a sensitive area, and endeavour that we collect that information in a respectful way. On this occasion, we have failed to do so'.


The Government has been forced to apologise over a question about pupils’ ethnicity in the controversial national school census.


Italian ambassador Pasquale Terracciano criticised the data forms sent out by UK schools asking parents whether their child was “Italian”, “Italian-Sicilian” or “Italian-Neapolitan”, pointing out that Italy has been a unified country since 1861.


A number of families had filed complaints to the embassy in London over the issue – one of several problems highlighted in the changes to school data collections brought into effect this year – prompting fresh calls for a boycott of the census.


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