Veiled teacher controversy continues

Filed under: Media, Day Care & Education

The appeal trial for a Muslim school teacher who got fired for wearing a veil in the classroom started yesterday in England.

Aishah Azmi was let go from her position as an ESL teacher at a primary school after refusing to remove her veil in the classroom, for reasons of religious principal. The school had previously ordered her to remove the veil on grounds that it interfered with her ability to properly teach the kids. Ms. Azmi's veil is a full face-covering material, and allegedly interfered with the children's ability to see her lips.

The teacher did not wear her veil to the job interview, but wore it in the classroom once she started the job, and that's where I have issue with this case. Although I believe in individual right to religious freedom of expression as an important component of individual lives, I believe that if it interferes with one's ability to properly conduct a job, it doesn't have place there. Ms. Azmi must also have known this in choosing not to wear her veil to the interview.

Ms. Azmi was teaching the English language to foreign-born children. I would think that lip-reading would play an integral role, and with her veil in place, only her eyes can be seen. Her legal council begs to differ, protesting that "Sacking a Muslim teaching assistant for refusing to remove her veil is akin to discriminating against Catholics for going to mass on a Sunday".

What do you think?

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AdviceMama Says:
Start by teaching him that it is safe to do so.