Religion

Florida Father Protests Islamic Lessons In School

| by Sean Kelly

A father in Florida was outraged to discover that his son was learning about Islam in his 10th grade world history class.

Ron Wagner notified WFTV News when he found out about his son’s studies, and read aloud a portion of the world history textbook during an interview.

“There is no god but God,” Wagner read. "Muhamad is the messenger of God."

Wagner, who is not religious, said that Islam being mandatory in his son’s history class isn’t okay with him. “Students were instructed to recite this prayer as the first Pillar of Islam, off of the board at the teacher's instruction,” he said. “For it to be mandatory and part of the curriculum and in the textbooks didn't seem right.”

Wagner also said he was disturbed by the fact that the first 100 pages of the book make no mention of Christianity or Judaism. According to the school, the exclusion of the other major religions is due to a manufacturer’s defect in 68 of the books they ordered.

Michael Blasewitz, who oversees the school curriculum, told WFTV that the “Pillars of Islam are benchmarks in the state curriculum."

“There's a difference between teaching of the significance or the impact of a religion and teaching the specific tenets of a religion,” Wagner said.

In response to Wagner’s opposition, the school issued a statement clarifying their reasoning behind teaching Islam in school.

“In a diverse society, young people should be taught about a wide variety of beliefs, cultures and faiths, and particularly about a faith practiced by millions of Americans and more than one fifth of the world's population,” the statement read. “Denying all students access to vital information based on the biased political or religious agenda of Islam phobic groups or a handful of misinformed parents does a disservice to our school system, our state and our nation. History is not kind to those who censor information or ban books.”

Source: WFTV / Photo Credit: Wikimedia Commons