Tuesday, October 02, 2007

Oak Lawn Schools May Cancel Holiday Traditions

You know I wish I could say I was shocked by this but its a growing trend around the US to remove any form of the Christian religion from the foundation of the nation.

OAK LAWN, Ill. A southwest suburban school district has taken action, responding to the concerns of a parent who is Arabic.

But now, as CBS 2's Suzanne Le Mignot reports, other parents are angry that traditional school holidays will be renamed or even eliminated.

"That does not represent all the Muslims, all of the Arabs at that school," said Qais Nofel, the father of a student in Ridgeland School District 122.

There was some heated discussion between parents outside Columbus Manor Elementary School in Oak Lawn on Friday. The thought of no more traditional holiday celebrations has many parents really upset.

For now, children in Ridgeland School District 122 will celebrate fall festival instead of Halloween and winter festival instead of Christmas.

Brenda Elvidge said, "It's not fair to our kids. This is America and that's an American tradition."

The decision affects the children at four elementary schools in Oak Lawn and one junior high school in Bridgeview.

The district has a 30 percent Arabic population. The superintendent says the reason for the change in tradition comes after one parent wanted Ramadan decorations put up inside Columbus Manor Elementary. They were taken down.

Superintendent Tom Smyth said, "I go back to our policy which says that public schools are to remain neutral in this respect."

Meantime, Arab children are being allowed to pray during what's being called their own time, that's lunch time, during Ramadan.

Parent June Quigley said, "They get to pray in our schools. That is religion in a public school."

Arab-American parents have different views on the issue.

Sala Abour said, "To take away Halloween and Christmas from little kids, that is very wrong."

Nofel said, "We go and we celebrate the holidays and traditions here, but we do have the right to be Muslims as well."

Other parents say the controversy is overshadowing what really needs to be addressed at all five schools in the district.

Ronnie Carroll said, "The fact that they are cash strapped. Our classroom size is way above the average mean, 38 children in our first grade classroom. The concern should be our school, not the whole holiday issues."

Those issues along with the holiday controversy are going to be addressed at a school board meeting on Tuesday. Members will decide if holidays will be celebrated or not.

Meantime, the Illinois PTA district director says the state is now investigating this issue and there's a meeting with the superintendent next week.

Its really simple folks, for the people that want a complete secular nation they need to start young. What better way to get this done then by having kids believe that celebrating Christmas is wrong and a dumbed down version of it is okay.

You have got to love the appeasement mentality.

No comments: