A Colorado school district is coming under fire after planning to take middle school students on a trip to a Muslim mosque and making the girls adhere to clothing requirements.
According to reports, The Douglas County School District near Denver sent a letter home to parents of students in the world religions class and informed them of the dress code that the kids must adhere to while visiting the mosque on Tuesday, Jan. 13. The mosque, reports note, was just one of three different houses of worship that the students were to visit, the others being a synagogue and a Greek Orthodox Church.
“All students must wear appropriate long pants,” the letter reads. “Ankles must be covered. Girls must bring wide scarves or hooded sweatshirts for the mosque.”
Reports say that some parents were outraged that their children had to adhere to the clothing requirements, and quickly, local media caught on to the story.
Now, the school district has responded to the criticism as well as claims from some that this is an example of Common Core gone wrong.
“For the past ten years, RHMS seventh-grade students take a social studies course that is partially focused on world religion,” the statement reads. “In the Douglas County School District (DCSD), we provide authentic learning experiences to all students. We teach students how to think, not what to think.
“The social studies course includes a voluntary field trip to a Greek Orthodox Church, a Jewish Temple, and a Mosque,” the statement continues. “As with any field trip, our students and families are offered the choice to participate in the field trip – it is not mandatory. If the decision is made to not participate in a field trip, alternative educational opportunities are provided. This is true for any DCSD field trip, including the RHMS world religion field trip. Students who choose to attend the RHMS world religion field trip are expected to respect the dress code of the host facility, but again, they may choose not to participate.
“Common Core does not include social studies,” the statement also says. “In fact, the world religion social studies course is part of the seventh-grade Colorado Academic Standards – meaning this is part of the state requirement for all Colorado school districts.”
Do you think the school district should make the students, especially the female students, adhere to dress code for visiting the mosque?