Seventh Grade Teacher Criticized For Teaching Students Song About Islam

| by Emily Smith
Ocean View School.Ocean View School.

An Orange County, California, middle teacher received criticism from parents after she taught her seventh grade students a song about Islam.

The seventh-grade teacher at Ocean View School said that she was trying to teach her students about Islam by using a catchy tune: the melody from “This Is My Fight Song," CBS Los Angeles reports.

The lyrics read:

“Like a sandstorm in the desert, sending camels into motion,
Like how a single faith can make a heart open,
They might only have one god,
But they can make an explosion.”

On Nov. 17, several parents and grandparents appeared in front of the Ocean View School Board in Huntington Beach, California, to address the song.

“I believe that by singing this song, the children feel comfortable believing that maybe Allah is the only god, and maybe that they should start following him,” parent Susan Negron told CBS Los Angeles. “And that I’m not OK with.”

Grandparent Nichole Negron noted that she wouldn’t have known about the song if her grandson had not accidentally brought it home.

Ojaala Ahmed, a representative for the Council for American Islamic Relations (CAIR) in Anaheim, California, said that the song felt too closely related to the Nov. 13 attacks in Paris.

“Especially with the recent attacks [Islamic State group] has been doing, knowing that this potentially Islamophobic backlash might come about, what was the teacher’s intention?” Ahmed asked.

On Nov. 18, Superintendent Carol Hansen issued a statement saying it wasn’t the teacher's intention to incite, anger or offend anyone, the Orange County Register reports. Hansen added that it was unfortunate that the lesson on Islam had directly followed the Paris attacks.

The school immediately released a statement of apology. An investigation into the teacher and the song is currently underway.

Sources: CBS Los Angeles, Orange County Register / Photo credit: Ocean View School District, Wikimedia Commons