Thursday, April 27, 2017

Why this Mississauga mom fears for her son's safety at school prayers

A Mississauga mother of four says she fears for her eldest son's safety after a number of high-profile incidents targeting Muslim school prayers at the Peel District School Board.

"This topic is starting to enrage a lot of people and, I think for community safety, there is definitely heightened security across the board," Shireen Ahmed told As It Happens host Carol Off.

Ahmed wrote an article for the Globe and Mail titled "My son shouldn't have to be afraid during Muslim prayers at school," in which she describes the heightened tension around school prayers in recent months.

The PDSB has held voluntary Friday prayers for Muslim students at its schools for 20 years. Ahmed's 17-year-old son attends them every week, sometimes leads the service with his own sermons on topics like exam stress or youth engagement, she said.

"He's been going most of his life on Fridays," Ahmed said. "There's more than 300 students that go. They go hang out after. Like, it's just sort of like something they do together."

But in recent months, these routine prayers have ignited a firestorm of controversy, sparking a series of anti-Muslim incidents after the board sought to review whether students should be allowed to write their own sermons or instead be required to use pre-written ones.  (more...)


An unacknowledged reason to retain the Catholic school boards -- refuge from the neo-know-nothings

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