Petition Launched to Ban "Islamic Indoctrination" in Schools

The controversial issue of schools, especially public schools and religion is back again. Christian groups like the Christian Action Network have been lobbying against what they term as the”Islamic indoctrination of U.S. schools.”

This came after a blog post by the Department of Education urging vigilance by teachers over the issue of bullying of Muslim students. It claimed that some Muslim children were exposed to physical and verbal attacks in addition to social isolation. Names such as ‘ISIS’ and ‘TERRORIST’ were often used by bullies in school.

These cases even went on to affect many communities that were perceived as Muslim like Sikhs. However, the major cause of controversy in the blog post was in the instructions given out to teachers requiring them to try and incorporate Islamic studies in their lesson plans, particularly in literature, social studies and also current events instruction to build multi-culturalism among children. Many were opposed to the idea as it failed to cater for bullying cases for other religions such as Christians and Jews and thus charges of favoritism were brought up.

The post also urged parents to educate their kids on bullying prevention. They were encouraged to help their kids in appreciation of other cultures and embracing of people of different cultures.

The DOE blamed the bullying on ignorance stating that many lacked proper information on the Islam religion and therefore associated Islam with terrorism.

The blog post antagonized many and the comment section was closed after just nine comments. All but one of the nine were against the proposal. The comments suggested that religion should be an issue to be deal with by parents and not teachers, while another blogger questioned why the bullying of Islamic students was given greater priority to the bullying of other kids. Another comment went on to describe Islam as a totalitarian and supremacist political ideology and not a religion and ended with the seeking of the disbandment of the DOE.

Christian groups, for example, the Christian Action Network, based in Virginia, publicly stated its intention to begin collecting petitions which are to be presented to the new U.S. Secretary of Education, John B. King Jr. They have also launched a petition on demanding that the DOE stops “its continued efforts to force Islam on school kids.”

According to Martin Mawyer, who is the president and founder of the network, the Department of Education is once again altering the school systems in the nation in defense of one religion (Islam) while it ignores the rights of others (Christianity and Judaism).

It is evident that Christian groups are not for the idea of incorporation of Islam in the curriculum and it is up to the Department of Education to come up with a better proposal befitting both parties.