A federal judge recently told school officials in San Diego to reveal details of their work with an Islamic advocacy organization that has been designated by the United Arab Emirates as a terrorist group, putting it in the same classification as ISIS.
Now a legal team in that fight says it has issued investigative subpoenas to the California chapter of the Council on American-Islamic Relations as part of a federal civil rights lawsuit challenging the constitutionality of the San Diego Unified School District’s “anti-Islamophobia initiative.”
The case is being handled by the Freedom of Conscience Defense Fund, which is working on behalf of parents in the district.
The district’s multi-year program was developed under the direction of CAIR as a “holistic” plan to protect Muslim students and their families from bullying and discrimination. As part of the initiative, staff and students are taught by CAIR officials “how to become allies to Muslim students,” and CAIR is empowered to revise school curriculum to portray Islam more favorably.
FCDF is seeking communications between CAIR agents and the school district “as well as documents tracing the Islamic organization’s strategic process for gaining inside access to impressionable schoolchildren.”
“CAIR’s national director testified that proselytizing to schoolchildren is a ‘religious obligation,’ and the purpose of CAIR’s educational outreach, which includes passing out religious propaganda to students during class, is to ‘create a religious educational environment,” the organization said.
Chief Counsel Charles LiMandri explained: “Through deliberate manipulation, CAIR has gained unprecedented power and influence over San Diego Unified’s superintendent and school board. These subpoenas seek to answer questions about the extent of CAIR’s infiltration into the district.”
Also included in the subpoenas are requests for information about the Islamic Center of San Diego’s involvement in assisting CAIR through resources and information. For example, the wife of the local imam spearheads CAIR’s revisions to SDUSD’s curriculum.
“Allowing a radical religious organization to indoctrinate our public schoolchildren defies common sense and undermines the very history and logic of the First Amendment. We hope these subpoenas will shine more light on SDUSD’s unconstitutional relationship with CAIR,” LiMandri said.
In addition to the subpoenas, the legal team is continuing its investigation of SDUSD officials as a result of a court ruling issued last week ordering the district to hand over evidence in the controversy.
The legal team explained the school board “purported to rescind the initiative last July” but obtained records show that SDUSD is still adopting and implementing CAIR’s strategies.
It has sought a preliminary injunction, stating: “Despite public statements to the contrary, defendants have strengthened their partnership with the Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR). CAIR’s religious agenda is irrefutable; its divisiveness is undeniable. And strikingly, it prowls the schools not as a wolf in sheep’s clothing – in Justice Scalia’s words, ‘this wolf comes as a wolf.'”
But the program is in conflict with the Establishment Clause’s requirement: “One religious denomination cannot be officially preferred over another.”
The FBI has provided an abundance of evidence that CAIR is a front for the Muslim Brotherhood and its Palestinian branch, Hamas. And even a Persian Gulf state, the United Arab Emirates, has designated the Washington, D.C.-based organization a terrorist group.
The judge’s order a week ago requires San Diego school officials to turn over information about whether they are continuing to collude with CAIR.
The case was brought by several families and two parents’ groups against the San Diego Unified School District over its partnership with CAIR, a group founded by members of the Muslim Brotherhood, according to FBI evidence presented in a Hamas-funding case in which CAIR was named an unindicted co-conspirator.
As WND reported, lawyers with the Freedom of Conscience Defense Fund later revised their complaint to focus on CAIR’s radical Islamic origin. The complaint asserted the school district’s partnership with CAIR violated the First Amendment’s Establishment Clause, the Equal Protection Clause of the 14th Amendment and California law. WND later reported a federal judge objected to a reference to CAIR’s terrorist ties in the complaint, saying it was “impertinent, immaterial and scandalous,” designed only to “inflame the public.”
The program, the families argued, singled out Muslim students for special accommodations and called for changes to school curricula to make it more favorable to Islam. It also allowed CAIR officials into classrooms to teach students about Islam and “how to be allies” to Muslim students.
The district purchased thousands of dollars of CAIR’s recommended teaching materials, which were then distributed to the schools.
When they were caught working with the advocacy organization, San Diego school officials said they ended their partnership.
But the families and the San Diego Asian Americans for Equality and Citizens for Quality Education San Diego say that decision was a “sham” and the cooperation continues.
‘The true faith, Islam’
The influence of Islam in public schools has become a nationwide issue.
In May, in Groesbeck, Texas, a couple moved their sixth-grade daughter to a new school after they discovered her history homework assignment on Islam.
In late March, as WND reported, a middle school in Chatham, New Jersey, was using a cartoon video to teach the Five Pillars of Islam to seventh-grade students, prompting two parents to obtain legal services to fight the school district, which has ignored their concerns.
WND also reported in March a high school in Frisco, Texas, has set up an Islamic prayer room specifically for Muslim students to pray on campus during school hours. The same type of prayer rooms have been set up in high schools in St. Cloud, Minnesota, and other school districts.
In 2015, parents in Tennessee asked the governor, legislature and state education department to investigate pro-Islam bias in textbooks and other materials.
WND reported in 2012 ACT for America conducted an analysis of 38 textbooks used in the sixth through 12th grades in public schools and found that since the 1990s, discussions of Islam are taking up more and more pages, while the space devoted to Judaism and Christianity has simultaneously decreased.
In 2009, Gilbert T. Sewall, director of the American Textbook Council, a group that reviews history books, told Fox News the texts were “whitewashing” Islamic extremism and key subjects such as jihad, Islamic law and the status of women.
Also in 2009, WND reported the middle school textbook “History Alive! The Medieval World and Beyond,” published by Teachers’ Curriculum Institute, said an Islamic “jihad” is an effort by Muslims to convince “others to take up worthy causes, such as funding medical research.”
In 2006, WND reported a school in Oregon taught Islam by having students study and learn Muslim prayers and dress as Muslims.
WND reported in 2003 a prominent Muslim leader who eventually was convicted on terror-related charges helped write the “Religious Expression in Public Schools” guidelines issued by President Bill Clinton.
In 2001, shortly after the 9/11 attacks, seventh graders in Byron, California, were taught a three-week course on Islam that required them to learn 25 Islamic terms, 20 proverbs, Islam’s Five Pillars of Faith, 10 key Islamic prophets and disciples, recite from the Quran, wear a robe during class, adopt a Muslim name and stage their own “holy war” in a dice game.
Parents went to court to uphold their right to reject the class for their children, but a federal judge ruled against them, and in 2006, the U.S. Supreme Court refused to consider their appeal.