SAHRC probing school over headgear

2013-01-24 10:23

Cape Town - The SA Human Rights Commission (SAHRC) is probing the case of two siblings who were kicked out of a Cape Town school for wearing traditional Islamic headgear, it was reported on Thursday.

Sakeenah Dramat, 16, and her brother Bilaal, 13, were asked by teachers at Eben Dönges High in Kraaifontein to remove their headscarf and fez on the first day of school last week.

Their mother Nabila said the school called her later in the day and said it was against the code of conduct for her children to wear the headgear.

The children had since missed six days of school.

"I can't allow them to take it off because it is against our Islamic beliefs.... It is very sad. It is very disturbing. They are heartbroken to be out of school for such a simple reason."

The SAHRC said it was investigating the case. School principal Wilfred Taylor referred all media enquiries to the provincial education department for comment.

Department spokesperson Paddy Attwell told the Cape Times an official would meet the parents at the school later on Thursday to arrange the children's return to school.

"According to the [national school uniforms] guidelines, schools should take religious and cultural diversity into account. We believe it is a simple matter to adjust dress codes to meet these requirements," he said.

  • Killbot79 - 2013-01-24 10:29

    Of all things? Surely there are more important things in life than what to wear, like farm murders, crime in general?

      riad.mahomed - 2013-01-24 11:49

      @DelusionBuster & Kalabafazi: It’s a shame when you comment on topics that you have no knowledge about; of course your comment would be justified if it was more an informed one instead of a presumptuous rhetoric.

      mike.lindsay.7927 - 2013-01-24 12:23

      @ Riad Mahomed. Please would you verify or refute the comments as set out by DelusionBuster. * Did he take a 6 year old child to be his bride ? * Did he engage in sexual intercourse with her when she was 9 years old ? For the sake of religious knowledge and understanding I look forward to a reply. Please stay on the topic. Be brief.

      silenta.solly - 2013-01-24 12:30

      Let's not forget to thank the DA, well done

      riad.mahomed - 2013-01-24 13:04

      @mike.lindsay7977: please open below link which elaborates this comment.

      seymore.butt - 2013-01-24 13:21

      There is no place for religion or politics in schools!

      mike.lindsay.7927 - 2013-01-24 13:40

      @ Riad Mahomed Thanks for the link. Makes me think that what goes on in the desert should stay in the desert.

  • gary.desousa.5 - 2013-01-24 10:35

    Listened to a very indepth interview last night on 702 with mcaiser and the principle who was very careful to be PC about this but he said on more than one occasion that the Parents withdrew their kids from the school so lets be careful about sensational headlines.

  • sandy.m.roman2 - 2013-01-24 10:43

    I understand that the headgear is part of their religious belief, but if it is against school policy so be it. Maybe they should send the children to a Moslem school? Next we will have to accept dreadlocks.

      johnny.williams.5682944 - 2013-01-24 10:49

      Perhaps if you read the article completely, it's not against school policy - and that a school is required to accommodate for instances like this.

      watsongeorgejan - 2013-01-24 11:08

      American kids for e.g don't wear uniforms but, compare their literacy levels and the overall quality of their education to ours and we are left wanting. There are far more important things we need be focus on other than some dumb head gear.

      jj.jeno.1 - 2013-01-24 11:08

      Rubbish, you should be allowed to attend any school without issue regardless of your religion and any religious attachments/garments. Are they telling kids to take their crosses off when at school?

  • thaluki.malema - 2013-01-24 10:48

    Don't allow it if it's not school uniform, period. Don't send your kids to school to if they are not dressed in the propper uniform & to provoke a situation. If you don't like it, put your kids in a school where religious headdress is allowed.

      mihla.sithole - 2013-01-24 11:25

      This is a public school and it belongs to everyone.Why should the school only reflect the view of the dominat group?making rules which target a specific group is unconstitutional.

      robert.m.sylvester - 2013-01-24 13:08

      Absolutely correct. If one does not want to comply like everyone else, simply find a muslim school. Christian schools will not chop off your head if you try them out. Muslim schools will not even admit a non-muslim.

  • Khadija Osman - 2013-01-24 10:58

    well, if the fez and scarf are the school uniform colour and blend in with the school then it shouldnt be a problem the parents prob felt their kids would be discriminated therfore took them out. as for sending to a mUslim school why shouldnt every1 benefit from ex model C facilities???

      jan.vanniekerk.52 - 2013-01-24 12:03

      The fez and scarf are not uniform and do not blend in, irrespective of their colour, pattern. Colour doesn't matter. Why must you make everything about colour? Neither do blended tattoos, non-standard colour coded ties, colour coded tongue rings, nose rings, bangles, coloured traditional weapons or coloured vuvuzelas.

  • Zooooming like a BEE - 2013-01-24 11:03

    Let them wear it, what is the problem? They respect their religion. Freedom of religion also means the right to wear religious items, this school is out of line. I totally support these parents and feel sorry for these kids. How can teachers not know constitutional rights? I honesty hope this was not about religious views, that would be a sad day!

  • hannah.p.mostert - 2013-01-24 11:07

    good no religion belongs in schools, do not put segregation in the minds of our children

  • collet.letsoalo - 2013-01-24 11:15

    If it is a public school, then i think all pupils must stick to the school uniform, nothing less nothing more.

      mihla.sithole - 2013-01-24 11:37

      Thank gooodness thats your opinion.)exceptions have to be made for genuine cases.what about kids who cannot afford blazers or the full school uniform? Should they be kicked out for not wearing the full school uniform? That problem will be created by your rigid mentality

      robert.m.sylvester - 2013-01-24 13:11

      Comply with the school rules, or bugger off

  • mihla.sithole - 2013-01-24 11:16

    in 2007 the Con court set a precedent in the 'Hindi Nose ring' ruled that schools need to be inclusive and accomodate the diversity which characterise our country.Further,the equality acts states that we should be not descriminated against on the basis of religion, sexuality and race.The school has violated the constitution ,not only by descriminating against the pupils,by also kicking them out of school thus denying them a constitutionally guarunteed right to education.Scool rules are important but they do not supercede the constitution of the country.Those rules should be aligned with our constitution.People also need to stop hiding their prejudices bhind the 'rules are rules' argument.Apartheid had rules too.Does that mean those rules had to be respected even if they are unconstitutional?

  • kaapse.skollie.7 - 2013-01-24 11:23

    Students must obey school rules, and schools must obey the law and the constitution. When in Rome...

  • dany.duprez.338 - 2013-01-24 11:24

    delusionbuster,you are sooooo right,freedom from religion is what this world needs in order to go foreward .

  • dawood.bawa.1 - 2013-01-24 11:28

    We all apy our taxes, why should our children go to private schools.

  • Beatrice Chandia - 2013-01-24 11:29

    I remember of a particular young lady that was allowed to wear pants instead of skirt at school, which was specially made for her by the manufacturers of that particular public primary schools uniform just to accomodate her beliefs. The school must at least meet them half way.

  • Madimetsa Mashishi - 2013-01-24 11:37

    schools lyk dat should be closed / the principal should b expelled from dat school dats all

  • Khadija Osman - 2013-01-24 11:42

    U are delusional. we are talking about kids who want an education. stick to the topic and dont refer to things that dont happen in our country

      simon.berry.925 - 2013-01-24 11:49

      Yes, exactly, stick to the uniform, don't bring religious attire into education.

  • Khadija Osman - 2013-01-24 11:45

    Craven, its called being modest. and again no1 is talking about you or your wifes body.

      riad.mahomed - 2013-01-24 12:15

      @carven.luyt: Judging from your above comment, this shows how little you know about the religion itself so instead of sensationalism you’re debating skills, of course this would be cheered by those who knows no better than you, maybe you should try best to pretend that you know what you are talking about.

      riad.mahomed - 2013-01-24 13:40

      @DelusionBuster: Judging from your comment I take it that you live life based on assumption. Do you know for a fact that I believe in flying horses. Like I always say, assumption is the root to all stuff ups.

  • bell.charmaine - 2013-01-24 11:46

    Yes, there is more to worry about than "headgear", not that it is not important to the children in question BUT attend to school murders, bullying, rape, pregnancy, drugs, EDUCATION systems and more. There is a place for all of us under the Sun.

  • andrew.martin.71619533 - 2013-01-24 11:49

    sharp end of the wedge....

  • - 2013-01-24 12:00

    Although religious tolerance must be promoted at all times, parents also need to apply common sense and not use their children to promote their opinions and beliefs. When applying for entrance to a school, they would have been informed of the school rules and dress code, and they would have been asked to uphold these. They knew exactly what was required so claiming victimisation after the fact is disingenuous. There is no typical Muslim dress code and many Muslims throughout the world do not wear headdresses, depending on their particular region or circumstances. Most importantly, religion should never be used to provoke or create hostility, which unfortunately occurs throughout the world. The real losers here are the boys and common sense is the fatality.

  • mike.lindsay.7927 - 2013-01-24 12:21

    @ Riad Mahomed. Please would you verify or refute the comments as set out by DelusionBuster. * Did he take a 6 year old child to be his bride ? * Did he engage in sexual intercourse with her when she was 9 years old ? For the sake of religious knowledge and understanding I look forward to a reply. Please stay on the topic. Be brief.

      riad.mahomed - 2013-01-24 13:17

      @mike.lindsay.7927: forgive me for saying but I do I do not see the coloration between the article at hand and your posed question. If you are looking for answers, I’m sure you can find an array of explanation and comments on the web to which you are more than welcome to choose from......use it, don’t use, that’s your prerogative

  • tom.hudson3 - 2013-01-24 12:59

    You should have gone to school more often and learned how to spell

  • raymond.mcnelly - 2013-01-24 13:23

    Islam traditions... Please continue to oppose it!

  • mnmwale - 2013-01-24 13:32

    They must go to a Muslim school so that they do not disturb the beauty of uniformity and oneness that the school uniform bestows on a school.

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