Tauheedul Islam Girls' High School will be the North West's first Muslim state school after the proposal cleared its final hurdle.

The Blackburn school has successfully fought to become voluntary-aided, like the towns three church schools.

It will open under its new status in September 2006. The all-girls school applied to the local authority in 2003 and, after public consultation, the plan got council approval in January 2004.

It followed a council report stating there was a growing trend for Muslim parents to place children in independent Muslim schools and the only way to ensure better links with the community was to provide a Muslim school within the local education authority.

Further consultation followed in March and the school is celebrating news it will join the LEA family after receiving the all clear from its final stumbling block.

The School Organisation Committee (SOC) an independent body representing all those involved in education locally has approved the plan.

A six-period, 8.30am-1.30pm day will be replaced with a more traditional timetable and instead of selecting girls whose parents are members of Masjid-e-Tauheedul, the school will follow the admissions policy set out in legislation and the local education authority's code of practice.

It will teach to national curriculum guidelines within a religious context and face inspection regimes, as all other publicly funded faith schools, and will foster links with mainstream schools.