Now it’s a New Jersey school district that has been told to stop a promotion campaign for Islam.
WND recently has reported on two school districts in Washington state that instructed teachers to greet students in Arabic and work with Muslim students to give “a lesson” on Ramadan and provide special accommodations for them.
At least one district already has backed away from its plans at the urging of the Freedom of Conscience Defense Fund, which is reminding public schools they are not Islamic madrassas.
Now the group has sent a cease-and-desist letter to West New York School District Supt. Clara Herrera in West New York, New Jersey.
It’s because two district-sponsored Ramadan posters are up at Memorial High.
“One poster offers ‘Warm greetings from Memorial High School’ and wishes students to ‘Have a blessed Ramadan.’ The poster then beseeches that ‘MAY ALLAH CONTINUE TO SHOWER YOU WITH LOVE AND WISDOM,'” the FCDF letter explains.
“A public school district would never hang posters praying for Jesus Christ to shower students with love and wisdom,” said Daniel Piedra, FCDF’s executive director. “Apparently the Left’s notion of the so-called ‘separation of church and state’ only applies to Christians.”
A teacher at the school had contacted FCDF, expressing concern about the Islam promotions.
“The teachers are also frustrated that school administrators are allowing a group of Muslim students to go from classroom to classroom during school hours and interrupt teachers during the middle of lessons to indoctrinate students about Ramadan and Islamic beliefs,” the legal team said.
“The First Amendment prohibits public school districts from endorsing a particular religion. These Ramadan posters and Islamic student presentations are sending a clear message to non-Muslim students that they are outsiders in the school community while sending a message to Muslims that they are insiders, the exalted student group. West New York School District is blatantly violating the Constitution,” Piedra said.
The group explained: “School districts nationwide are succumbing to external pressure to promote Islam. In Washington, for example, FCDF is demanding that two school districts drop their Ramadan policies. In Dieringer School District, the superintendent adopted recommendations by the Council on American-Islamic Relations to order teachers to bless Muslim students in Arabic during Ramadan. In Northshore School District, school officials were implementing a special Ramadan program that, among other things, ordered teachers to create special Islamic safe spaces and revise lesson plans to make sure they are inclusive toward Muslim students. Northshore dropped the policy after FCDF threatened legal action.”
The group’s letter to Herrera explains the Islam posters “explicitly promote Ramadan” and have the “primary effect of advancing Islamic practices.”
The letter says: “The Supreme Court has been ‘particularly vigilant in monitoring compliance with the Establishment Clause in elementary and secondary schools.’ School officials therefore must ensure that no school policy ‘conveys a message that a particular religion, or a particular religious belief is ‘favored,’ ‘preferred’, or ‘promoted’ over other beliefs.”
The posters send a message “to a reasonable student that West New York School District endorses Islamic beliefs and practices.”
It had directed teachers to create “safe spaces” for Muslims, plan with Muslim students to let them “quietly slip away” from class for prayer, “privately offer information” about nutrition during their Ramadan fast, give “a lesson” on Ramadan and privately ask Muslim students what accommodations they want.
WND reported May 6 FCDF sent a similar letter to the Dieringer School District in Lake Tapps, Washington, about the same issue.
That district’s Ramadan policy had been recommended by the terror-linked Council on American-Islamic Relations.
After CAIR wrote to the district suggesting various changes in policy and practice that would benefit Muslim students, district Supt. Judy Martinson implemented CAIR’s suggestions as official district policy. She distributed the CAIR letter to school principals, who in turn circulated it to all teachers and staff, FCDF said.