Lumberton, Texas –– A Texas high school teacher is under investigation after she had some of her students dress in Islamic clothing during a lesson about Islam.
The unnamed geography teacher at Lumberton High School allegedly brought Islamic outfits to school and had some of the girls dress in burqas for all in the class to see. She also instructed students to refer to Muslim terrorists as “freedom fighters,” and asked them to write an essay about how democracy has caused upheaval in Egypt — as opposed to the prevailing Muslim Brotherhood party.
The incident was kept quiet to parents — that is, until a photograph surfaced on Facebook.
“I am outraged,” one of the parents told reporter Todd Starnes. “I felt my blood pressure go through my head.”
The woman states that she was shocked when she saw her 14-year-old daughter in the photograph wearing a burqa.
“As parents, we should have been made aware of this, and I felt like the line had been crossed,” she said. “Christian kids who want to pray have to do it outside of school hours, yet Islam is being taught to our kids during school hours.”
The teen’s father stated that he was puzzled as to what Islam has to do with a geography class, since it is a religion and not a country. However, the girl asserted that she knew exactly why her teacher had organized the activities.
“They were asked about their perception of Islam,” the girl’s mother explained. “Most of the class said they thought about terrorism. And her response was, ‘We’re going to change the way we perceive Islam.’”
The school district, however, contends that the lessons were centered on a variety of cultures, and included references to Christianity.
“The lesson is not teaching a specific religion, and the students volunteered to wear the clothing,” it wrote.
But the girl’s mother said that Christianity was not a part of the discussion.
“They went in-depth into Islam and I’m not comfortable with it,” she stated.
Now, state senator Dan Patrick, who serves as the chairman of the Senate Education Committee, is conducting an investigation into the matter.
“Parents are very sensitive to any issue that seems to be anti-American – that blames democracy for some sort of trouble in the world,” he said. “Could you imagine if someone asked a Muslim student to dress up as a priest? The parents of a Muslim student might be rather upset about that.”
Patrick states that he has suspicions after the school principal claimed that the activities were part of CSCOPE, a lesson plan for teachers, which the district denies.
“In this particular case, there’s a photograph and there’s a letter from the school district and there’s another companion lesson,” he stated. “You start adding these issues up and it puts CSCOPE under the microscope more.”