Tuesday, August 10, 2010

Interfaith Intersections: Communicating Your Child’s Religious Needs at School

Project Interfaith Executive Director Beth Katz in the August 2010 post for her monthly blog "Interfaith Intersections" for Metro Neighborhood News offers tips and resources to communicating your child's religious and cultural needs to his or her teachers.

The next school year is only a few weeks away (or less for some of you). An important consideration to starting the school year off on a good note is to have a plan for how you will communicate your child's religious and/or cultural needs with her teachers and school administrators. Appropriate subjects to communicate with your child's educator include:

  • Holidays for which a child might need to miss school or the observance of which might affect his or her performance or school work such as the fasting that Muslim students may do during Ramadan. (Click here to learn what Ramadan is and why Muslims fast during this time.)
  • Religious or cultural dietary requirements or restrictions. For example, Jewish students who keep kosher will not eat foods with pork or shellfish in them and may refrain from mixing dairy and meat products. (Click here to learn why)
  • Accommodating a child's daily prayers. Click here to learn more about what types of student prayer are permissible in a public school setting.
  • Opting out of school activities, programs or celebrations that conflict with a student's religion or culture. Most schools have an opt-out policy in place that allows for children to receive an alternate assignment or class as long as the assignment, activity or course being opted out of is not essential to the educational mission of the school.

From my work at Project Interfaith with educators, I know many educators are... (click here to read the full article)

No comments: