A Swedish school district has sparked outrage for striking a deal with local Muslim groups ensuring Muslim students can skip out on overnight class trips, among other exemptions.
“My first reaction after reading was total shock: how can schools so casually force children into more segregation and social exclusion?” women’s and equal rights activist Bahareh Andersson wrote on the Swedish opinion website Newsmill.
GAPF, along with other groups, have reported the matter to national education authorities in Sweden, arguing that the agreement legitimizes violence, oppression and control over Muslim children.
“Schools have often given these children a little breathing room. We meet children who say that at school the can relax and take a breath. There isn’t a dad, cousin, or brother running around in the halls and controlling them,” Sara Mohammad, chair of GAPF, told TT.
“School should be a neutral environment where they avoid being controlled. Children aren’t born with religious values, rather it is parents’ traditional convictions that are forced on the children. Schools and municipalities shouldn’t contribute to that.”