White schoolboys from less well-off backgrounds in Birmingham are in danger of being recruited by far right groups as they grow increasingly disaffected, it has been claimed.

The warning was made following a report into underachieving children in the city which shows that ‘white disadvantaged’ pupils are performing significantly below the Birmingham average.

The head teacher of Colmers School in Rednal, Peter Jones, called on Birmingham to take a lead in tackling the issue during a meeting of Birmingham City Council’s education scrutiny committee. And Nigel Baker, deputy general secretary of the National Union of Teachers in Birmingham, warned: “Areas like yours are also breeding grounds for extremism for right wing parties.”

Council officers at the meeting acknowledged that “extremist attitudes” existed in areas such as Longbridge and Sheldon, but said there was a city-wide programme to tackle the problem.

Mr Jones said: “Low self-esteem and low aspirations are typical. A major part of our work is raising aspirations.”