Rather than add a school holiday for Muslims who were requesting one, a Florida school board has canceled all religious observances—including Yom Kippur, Good Friday and the day after Easter.
The Hillsborough County School Board this week approved its 2006-07 calendar without the religious holidays, on a 6-1 vote, the Tampa Tribune reported.
The controversy began when Ahmed Bedier, a spokesman for the Council on American-Islamic Relations, in December requested a school holiday for Eid Al-Fitr, a holy day marking the end of Ramadan. The board then decided to reconsider the district calendar, voting to delete all religious holidays.
Bedier called the change away from observing religious holidays “just an excuse to hide bias against the Muslims.”