Friday, June 22, 2007


SANTA CLARA, Calif., June 21 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- The San
Francisco Bay Area chapter of the Council on American-Islamic Relations
(CAIR-SFBA) today called for a public apology and diversity training
following a June 19th incident in which a high school official demanded
that a Muslim student remove her hijab, or Islamic head scarf.
According to the 13-year-old Muslim student, a supervisor in the
lunchroom of Seaside High School in Seaside, Calif., demanded that she
remove her scarf, despite being told that it was worn for religious
reasons. The student, who was visiting the school to take part in a summer
algebra program, says she broke down in tears after the supervisor
allegedly shouted, "You have to take it off now," in front of more than 100
other students in the lunchroom.
Despite the shouted demands of the school official, the girl refused to
remove her scarf.
CAIR-SFBA contacted the school principal who confirmed that the
incident occurred as described. He offered to arrange a face-to-face
apology with the supervisor and student but did not agree to a public
"It is a gross violation of authority to demand that a student violate
his or her religious principles in order to receive an education," said
CAIR-SFBA Executive Director Safaa Ibrahim. "Because the student was
humiliated in public, it is only reasonable to make an apology or statement
in public to mitigate the damage caused by the supervisor's unacceptable
Ibrahim also asked that the school institute diversity training for all
staff and that appropriate measures be taken to ensure that this type of
disturbing incident is not repeated.
She said CAIR publishes a booklet, called "An Educator's Guide to
Islamic Religious Practices," designed to avoid just such incidents.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

If this happened like CAIR says, it sounds pretty egregious.

But that's a pretty big if. I'd like to hear another side to this one.