Muslim Girls Wearing Hijab in primary school will be asked why by inspectors.
The reason they give will then be written in schools reports amid fears girls are being forced by their parents.
The chief inspector of schools, Amanda Spielman, announced the move today.
She wants to make sure schools are not breaching equality laws by requiring only girls to wear religious garments.
‘In seeking to address these concerns, inspectors will talk to girls who wear such garments to ascertain why they do so in the school,’ said Spielman.
It comes after a Muslim campaigner called for hijabs to be banned in primary schools after it was revealed a fifth of 800 primary schools now list the headscarf in their uniform policy.
This is despite the fact a hijab is usually only worn by young women after puberty and in front of men for modesty reasons – not by primary school children.
Campaigners have said it should be ‘fiercely resisted’ and claimed it could ‘sexualise’ young children.
A survey by The Sunday Times found 18 per cent of 800 primary schools, including Church of England primaries, include the hijab in their uniform policy.
Across England’s 17,000 primary schools the figure is likely to run into thousands.
In Birmingham 46 per cent of 72 primary schools whose websites were checked had the hijab in their written online uniform policy.
In Tower Hamlets 34 per cent of 68 primaries had an online headscarf policy and in Luton the figure was 36 per cent.
Campaigners have warned against the rising trend of young children wearing the hijab.
Aisha Ali-Khan, a Muslim feminist campaigner and a teacher for 13 years, told MailOnline:
‘The hijab should be banned from primary schools but local authorities are afraid of causing offence to the Muslim community and afraid of being branded as racist.
‘A headscarf or hijab, is usually worn by girls who have reached puberty, to prevent unwanted sexual advances from men.
‘How can a four or five year old child make an informed choice? It’s not allowed in Islam so why is it being allowed in schools? You should only do something if you want to and understand the concept behind it.
‘But the local authorities are too scared to go back and our government has allowed this to be part of the school policy and that’s wrong. They are allowing decisions to be made by schools and local authorities which is worrying and they are trying to wash their hands of all responsibility.’
Gina Khan, a children’s rights campaigner in Birmingham, added: ‘Schools are allowing it because they are afraid of being called Islamophobic and they have been told that this is a religious garment – but they need to support Muslim girls to have free choices, not to be set apart from other children.’
Amina Lone, a Muslim former Labour parliamentary candidate, said: ‘In an Islamic context, the hijab is commonly understood as being for females after they reach the age of puberty. There are very few Muslims who would say a child should be covered.’
Shaista Gohir, of the Muslim Women’s Network, has previously said making young children wear the headscarf was as bad as children having spray tans and pole dancing lessons.
Ms Gohir said the hijab was designed to discourage sexual advances from men and enforcing it on young children could ‘sexualise’ them.
‘We challenge parents who spray tan or give pole dancing classes to seven-year-olds, so we should be challenging Muslim parents who make young children wear the hijab,’ she said.