After a parent lodged a complaint, a religious poem that was given to first-grade students to recite in a school contest was removed.
At W. M. Anderson Primary School in Kingstree, South Carolina, a substitute teacher gave a poem to a class of first-grade students to be recited during a yearly theatrical contest, reports WCSC.
The poem, “A Good Neighbor,” encourages children to be kind, helpful, and sympathetic towards other people. But at the end of the poem, a reference to Allah is written. “Look after your neighbor's needs and Allaah will reward your deeds,” the poem reads. Allaah, is an alternate spelling for Allah, the Arabic word for God, which is most often associated with Islam.
Williamsburg County district officials released the following students after seeing the poem.
"It was brought to the attention of the Williamsburg County School District Administration on February 2, 2016, that a substitute teacher at the primary level gave students within her class a poem to memorize for an annual oratorical contest that contained a word that referenced religion. The Administration immediately disqualified the poem, and reviewed all materials for the contest to assure their appropriateness. The Administration also met with the concerned parent who is now satisfied by the prompt actions of school and district leaders."
It is unknown whether the substitute teacher will be reprimanded.
In November 2014, a boy was pulled out of a middle school in Los Angeles because the school was teaching children the tenets of Islam, according to a video by KTLA.
“What I saw written in these bubbles was, ‘The one true God, Allah’ in one of the bubbles,” the father said. “In one of the other bubbles was ‘All people must submit to Allah,’ in another bubble. Then I turned the page over and I see the five pillars of Islam.”
The parents believe the history of religion should be taught, but not the tenets of the faith.
“Can you imagine the outcry all over this country if children were bringing home paperwork that asked them to write down John 3:16, or asked them to write down the Ten Commandments?” he said.
“And if it ended with the Declaration of the Faith, Jesus Christ is my Lord and Savior?” added the mother. “That’s what the equivalent, I mean, part of us, for our son? We’d be happy about that ... But we’re reasonable people, we understand that doesn’t belong in the school.”