Akter belongs to the Coalition for Muslim School Holidays, a group of more than 80 religious and ethnic organizations lobbying to have the two Eid holidays designated as days off in New York City schools, in which 10 percent of the 1.1 million students are Muslim, according to a study published last year by the Teachers College at Columbia University. The city's school calendar already recognizes Christmas and the Jewish holidays of Rosh Hashanah and Yom Kippur.
That's really not for Christmas though, if it's for 2 whole weeks when Christmas itself is only 1 day (2 if you count Christmas Eve). That time off includes New Year's Eve/Day, which I see as a secular holiday. So it's really just a winter break. I view spring break in the way, even though the time frame is usually around Easter.
Believe me, I know how badly those breaks are needed, I married a high school English teacher.
I agree, what is a government institution doing recognizing religious holidays? You know, making law respecting an establishment of religion is illegal. Says so right there in Amendment 1.
We can make secular holidays that coincide with religious ones, but we are by no means forced to do so. What these Muslims should be doing is coming up with a secular holiday that falls then and pushing for that to get time off school instead of something else.
That's not so simple from an administrative stance. You'd have kids randomly missing up to a whole week at a time in the middle of planned curricula. It's bad enough when they skip and the schools expect teachers to let them make-up the work, this would just be chaotic.