ROCKVILLE, Md. – Christmas is now just December 25th in the Montgomery County school district.
The suburban DC district stripped Christmas and Jewish holy holidays from its official calendar after Muslim parents complained.
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But that’s not good enough as they say the move does “nothing to gain parity and a day off for the Muslim holiday of Eid,” according to WTOP.
“Equality is really what we’re looking for,” Saqib Ali, co-chair of Equality for Eid, says. “Simply saying we’re not going to call this Christmas, and we’re not going to call this Yom Kippur, and still closing the schools, that’s not equality.”
CAIR isn’t happy either.
“What’s really concerning to us is that similar conditions weren’t placed on any other faith community,” a representative of the group, Zainab Chaudry, says, the station reports.
The district is attempting to decouple the breaks from school and religious holidays by calling them “winter break” and “student holidays.”
But school board member Michael Durso says unless the Muslim’s complaints aren’t addressed, “it comes off as insensitive, and I just think we cannot afford to be in that light.”
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According to NBC 4, school employee Samira Hussein has campaigned for 20 years to have the Muslim holiday added to the school calendar.
“The Eid is just the same exact as Christmas day or Easter day or Yom Kippur,” she says.
School representatives note absenteeism isn’t much different on the Muslim holidays.
“The absentee rate on the Eid holidays, when they’ve fallen on a school day, haven’t been considerably higher or lower than it is on any other given day,” spokesman Dana Tofig tells the news station.
The Washington Post reports the board 7-1 to stop recognizing the Christian and Jewish holidays.
“This seems the most equitable option,” said board member Rebecca Smondrowski, who proposed the idea, according to the paper.
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