THE founder of Scotland's first council-funded Islamic nursery say plans to open an Islamic primary school are moving forward.

The Evening Times told in January how Little Wonders, in Govanhill, had gained partnership status with Glasgow City Council - making it a first in the country.

At the time, founder Shaykh Zoheeb Iqbal said he would also like to open an Islamic primary school with local authority funding support.

Now Mr Iqbal has spoken again of his plans.

He told the Mail on Sunday: “We want to educate young people so they are confident and strong and understand the true meaning of Islam."

Making reference towards towards extremism, he also said: “There are risks out there - particularly online - where young people can be brainwashed to think other faiths are against them, but our responsibility is to educate them and ensure they know right and wrong.”

Evening Times: Scotland's first Islamic nursery, Little Wonders, pictured, opened in Govanhill in 2015Scotland's first Islamic nursery, Little Wonders, pictured, opened in Govanhill in 2015

Mr Iqbal also described how the school would strive to “promote tolerance and teach the children about other religions.” He added: “But, like in Catholic schools, there would be a religious ethos and a time for praying and learning about Islam.

"It is only fair to have Muslim schools if you have Catholic schools and other faith schools.”

Mr Iqbal hopes the independent school will open in time for the new academic year in August, and will reportedly be applying for funding from Glasgow City Council.

A Scottish Government spokesman told the Daily Record: “Any church or other religious body can ask a local authority to open a denominational school.

“The education authority then has to decide if there is sufficient demand to reach a decision.”

Little Wonders - which educates 23 children of mixed faiths - was granted partnership status from Glasgow City Council.

The Evening Times had exclusively told of the opening of the nursery in 2015.

Last month, Mr Iqbal said: “It means a lot in terms of having the support of the city council, especially as it means we have a mentor who will come in regularly to give us advice and work with us side by side.”