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Middle School Extra Credit: Fasting for Ramadan?!

January 16, 2013 at 5:00 am / by

About Anne Yenny

California PolitiChicks Anne Yenny is the mother of four ranging in age from 24-18; three sons (oldest a 2nd LT in the Marine Corps) and a daughter. Both of her parents are from Scotland; she lived there for two years in the late 70s and has been back many times.

(UPDATE BY AUTHOR:  I thought long and hard about naming names. The teacher no longer teaches at the school and I, for the most part, hold the school in high regard. it was a problem, i dealt with it and i won. But naming the school misses the point I was trying to make: that all teachers come from the same background and have been educated in the same schools, etc. and we kid ourselves if we think we can turn our backs and leave “educating” to the “experts”, no matter if we send our kids to private, parochial, public schools.)

“Don’t need a lunch today,” said my then 8th grader youngest of four. My first reaction, and second for that matter, was celebration: of all the mom chores, facing mayonnaise in the morning is the one I hate most, and for once the little darling remembered to tell me before I had tackled the chore.  Two reasons to be happy and the sun not yet up? Color me grateful.

I didn’t ask him why he didn’t need lunch until he pounced on dinner. “I fasted today for extra credit,” he answered.

Fasting?  Extra credit? To get information out of this child one needs threaten water boarding at a minimum. But eventually we got the story. A religion class each year at our Catholic school is mandatory, and in 8th grade a class in comparative religions is taught.

As part of the class, Sam’s teacher offered extra credit to fast on the first day of Ramadan.

“What else have you been offered extra credit for?” I asked. “Nothing,” he mumbled.

During a telephone call to the teacher, I asked the same question: Has extra credit been offered for any other religious practices?  No, none. And none were planned. I then explained in simple terms that by selecting ONLY an Islamic practice for extra credit, she was elevating its stature above all other religions being studied. She disagreed, and then lectured me on the superiority of Muslims to Christians. Sort of like arguing, “I didn’t kick your dog, but it bit me first.”

I demanded Sam be given extra credit for having been circumcised. She laughed. I didn’t. My chilly silence convinced her I was serious. The disagreement was escalated to the principal. I eventually won the battle (without proof of circumcision being required, much to Sam’s relief) but I have to admit I didn’t change any minds. The principal, who is a good friend (with four kids, I did my share of time in his office) did not and does not understand why I found the offering of extra credit for only an Islamic practice to be offensive.

It has been a financial sacrifice to send our four children to Catholic School K-12; it’s a decision we don’t regret. That having been said, I learned an important lesson. All teachers have gone to the same colleges and universities, done the same graduate work and been trained using the same curriculum. They have been steeped in liberal ideology. They have literally never left school. They have never had to face the long-term effect of the principles they teach. There are concepts that teachers learn and teach that defy real-world reality (boys and girls are the same, it’s only societal constructs that make boys prefer trucks and girls prefer dolls; all religions have terrorists; violence is never the answer, etc. etc.)

Are all teachers liberal? Most are, but it’s not their politics that scare me; it’s their wholesale belief in studies and experts (and they consider themselves to be an expert) and their wholesale rejection of common sense and reality. They are convinced that since they are trained “educators”, they should be given free rein in all education-related issues and that as parents we need to support them in every way.

Obvious problem: what they believe is education related is not the same as what we understand is education related.

As parents we want them to teach. And teaching, by definition, is measurable. While we were busy raising our families, educators changed the definition of teach, right around the same time they changed their title. It’s now their job to “educate” about social awareness, tolerance and environmentalism, which now teaches as fact that our current lifestyle is “unsustainable”. That’s the topic of an AP Environmental class, by the way, that my niece is now earning college credit for as a high school junior.

My son’s teacher told me she worried my youngest was “intolerant” and she felt it was her job to change that. I explained that all my children had been taught since the earliest of ages to tolerate everything–that is, everything that is tolerable. Cliterectomies, for instance, are never to be tolerated. Nor is wife beating or bigamy. Or flying planes into buildings. And anyway, I told her, if he ended up a loser, it would be my garage he would be living in as an adult. Unless she was willing to give him her address and leave a key under the mat, I instructed her to do her job, teach him about the different religions without elevating one over the other, and I would do mine. My job being defined as everything required to ensure that he would not be living in my garage when he is 27.

Teachers and what I call “the educational complex” figured it out before I did: get them early and they are yours for life. Whether by happenstance or design, teachers and the educational complex are usually the first voice our children hear on a subject. It never dawned on my sister to discuss same-sex marriage with her fifth grader until said child came home with some questions on California Proposition 8. And the reason for her questions? The teacher was wearing a “No on 8, No on hate” button in class. How many kids saw that button and never gave their parents the opportunity to give another view? My children, at certain ages, could have been easily convinced I would vote “yes on hate”.

We as parents have influence, but who has time to de-brief every child on every subject at the end of every day?  And how many children come home chatting with news of the day? Mine dropped the practice somewhere around 2nd grade, long before any controversial subjects were discussed.

And why are we sending our kids to spend the better part of every day to listen to adults, adults in authority, who think they know better than we what our children need to be taught to become functioning, responsible adults?

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Anne Yenny

California PolitiChicks Anne Yenny is the mother of four ranging in age from 24-18; three sons (oldest a 2nd LT in the Marine Corps) and a daughter. Both of her parents are from Scotland; she lived there for two years in the late 70s and has been back many times.

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54 Comments

  1. Julie says:

    What is especially appalling to me is this was in CATHOLIC school!

    I expect this sort of liberal junk crammed down my throat in a government-run brainwashing center (public school – like every red-blooded American, I was exposed to the godless, moral-less, so-open-minded-your-brain-falls-out, “progressive” philosophies, too), but in a private, Catholic school?

    Things are upside down in this world.

    “Woe to those who call evil good and good evil, who put darkness for light and light for darkness, who put bitter for sweet and sweet for bitter.” Isaiah 5:20

    It’s time to take a stand.

    “Then I heard another voice from heaven say: “Come out of her, my people, so that you will not share in her sins, so that you will not receive any of her plagues; for her sins are piled up to heaven, and God has remembered her crimes.” Revelation 18:4-5

    • Sue says:

      It would be nice if Christians could band together, revolutionize, and take the heartland of America back as a God-fearing nation, kick out all the liberals, and tell them to go live on one of the Left coasts!

      • Julie says:

        You should come to Texas…. ;) lol

        • Gladys Crump says:

          I like Texas but have been hearing some scary things being taught in Texas schools like the Boston Tea Party were terrorists….and the new Islamic teachings….used to think Texas would be the last hold out, but not sure now.

          • Julie says:

            Parents here are OUTRAGED over that! Sneaky, liberal tactics – they can’t get in through the front door, so they break a window in the back and sneak in. But word is getting out and parents are not happy about it at all!

          • CathLOLic says:

            I assure you that no one in our children’s Catholic school here in Texas is teaching children that Islam is “superior” to Christianity. Our school is strict when it comes to Catholic doctrine (we still have nuns in habits in our classrooms!), and great care is taken to hire only those teachers and administrators who respect traditional, orthodox Catholic belief.

            They also know very well that any such teaching would result in a rapid and vehement response from us parents, followed by a sudden depopulation of the school as we withdrew our children from the student body, We don’t pay all that money to have our kids taught heresy.

  2. Gym Shu says:

    Thus is where Vacuum II has taken our educational system. It’s time to get rid of Vaccum II and get back to the true teachings of the Catholic Faith.

    • The first thing they should do is start reading the documents of VATICAN II, which bear no resemblance whatever to what has been foisted on Catholics for the past 50 years.

    • Rachel says:

      Vatican II was the downfall of the Catholic Church. And because of it, even I broke away.

      • Gym Shu says:

        Rachel, I’m so sorry to hear that you have left the Catholic Church. There are Traditional Latin Independent Churches all across America that only celabrate the Traditional Latin Mass. You can locate these Churches by going to http://www.traditio.com I hope you are able to read this.

        • Rachel says:

          Thanks Gym Shu. I am still Catholic! I just don’t get involved in the “church” aspect anymore. I practice my Catholicism on my own. I don’t like the direction the organized Church has been going, or their politics, and don’t feel I need a church to be Catholic.

  3. They are brain washing our children to embrace the Muslim and their so called religion while those same Muslims kill their daughters for going against the parents wishes to marry someone they do not love or know and the Muslims want this same type of genocide to be perpertrated here in the US where we have laws against senseless killing of innocents.

    • Gladys Crump says:

      Yep lots of schools are requiring kids to learn Farsi or another Arabic language….in addition to Islamic studies and observation of Islamic holidays and prayer periods throughout the day. NOT GOOD!

  4. Debbie says:

    This kind of indoctrination is exactly why I started homeschooling 16 years ago! Why “undo” everything at the end of the day? Why would I send my child off, day after day, year after year, to sit under people that I have no idea how they live or what they truly believe in? No way! These are my kids, my responsibility and I am the one who will answer for what they’ve been taught. Therefore, I had better be the one teaching or I will be answering for someone else’s false teaching. In my opinion, once you know the false indoctrination going on, you are, from that moment on, held accountable if you keep sending your child off to get more and more.

    • Anne Yenny says:

      Debbie: I’ve said for years that all hope lies with homeschooling. It is my hope that I will have the opportunity to vote for a home-schooled president one day.

  5. She lectured you on the superiority of Muslims over Christians??? This teacher would not be teaching my child ANYTHING ever

  6. Tells it like it is says:

    .

    “They are convinced that since they are trained “educators”, they should be given free rein in all education-related issues and that as parents we need to support them in every way.”

    I had this same discussion with 2 elementary school teachers from Gault Ca. A third participant/observer was a Dr. of Biology from Sacrament State College, At the time the subject of sex education in schools was a hot topic. One of the teachers was bemoaning the fact that responsible parents were objecting to teaching sex education in elementary school and she could not understand why they were objecting, when I piped in with the question “What makes you think your qualified to teach sex ed?” The response in Unison was “why we are trained teachers and we know how to teach”. I then asked why then are the students math, english, and writing skills falling year after year? Then I pointed to the Dr of Biology and said he can verify that students entering college are not prepared to do college work. The good Dr nodded in agreement. The response was that the teachers have so many new things to teach that they cannot possibly teach everything. To that my response was “and now you want to teach sex ed when you cannot teach basic reading ‘riting and ‘rithmatic so that the basic skills needed to survive fall even further down the priority line?” The good Dr. just grinned because he knew the teachers had been taken down a peg that because of professional courtesy he could not do himself. He commended me later out of their hearing.

    I too am appalled that this ‘celebration of islamism’ took place in a Catholic school and in addition was defended by the administration.
    .

    • kid721952 says:

      The teacher should have been suspended and if it happened again “fired”,the majority of people in the United States still believe in “GOD” and not a man made symbol and religion like alah,groups of islam are trying to catch our children early and brainwash them to the laws and ways of islam,parents are our childrens own protection,young children know no better and need a parents protection from islamic beliefs which call for killing,cutting off of hands for thieves,death for women who dishonor the family or have pre-marital sex,islamic control is “FEAR” and “COMPLETE CONTROL OF THE HUMAN RACE”

  7. Erica says:

    I’m so glad I came across this article! We’re about to enroll our oldest of three children in Catholic school (Kindergarten). We want the message they receive at school to be the same message they receive from home. Apparently, we still have to keep our guard way up!!! The liberal indoctrination can strike there, too. Such a sad state of affairs these days. Thank you so much for the heads-up – and for some great talking-points should issues arrive! You really gave it to that teacher good! :)

    • Anne Yenny says:

      Erica: Yes, we can’t let our guard down for one minute. Our children are our responsibility and it’s a real challenge to make sure that a teacher’s opinion is not the only voice they hear. Good luck with your children and their education. The one thing I loved about Catholic school (aside from the quality of education, which was excellent) was that when I had a problem or concern, I was always listened to.

  8. Mike Evans says:

    This absurd at best, but even worse coming from a Catholic school. Islam is not a religion. Anyone that believe otherwise is a complete idiot. No true religion that I know of, supports murdering people of another religion and the mistreatment of women and children.

    • dHb says:

      Islam is indeed a political agenda cloaked in a religion. But it is only one of the ridiculous religions that mankind has invented out of ignorance and superstition.

      Murdering those in other religions? Ha, how about murdering those of the same religion? Shiites and Sunnis are not the only ones doing it. I guess you have not read about the latest Christian warring between the Catholic and Protestant faithful in Ireland, a saga that has been ongoing for centuries. America also has a very bloody past involving one Christian sect against another throughout our history. And as far as women and children goes,you need to reread the horrific stories in the old testament about the barbaric Jews at that time and how they treated the women and children of the nations they conquered all by the order by Jehovah. What nonsense!

      Religion IS the opium of the masses; it makes one high with
      self-righteous indignation for anyone of a different opinion and is the bane of common sense thinking. God gave us REASON, not religion.

      • Islam TEACHES hate, discrimination, and death. Please show me Chapter and Verse where Jesus Christ taught His followers to murder each other or those who do not accept Him? Thanks.

  9. Kent2012 says:

    more cancer from the spreading of the virus of islamy towel head scum

  10. There are Catholic schools, and there are Catholic schools. I think you should withdraw your son from this one, because it is obvious that nobody running that school has a clue what it means to be Catholic, and they are passing their ignorance to your child.

  11. lizaz says:

    The liberal infiltration continues…..if parents don’t stand up and make sure these people are removed from our education system, we will be doomed for the future…….

    • Rachel says:

      If we removed all of the loony leftwing propagandists from our schools, there wouldn’t be more than a handful of teachers left! And the kids would STILL be better off if that were the case.

  12. Alamokidd says:

    No words, right now … except to say that this is sad. :(

  13. kid721952 says:

    You pay high fees to put your children in a catholic school,the money is not the issue but the teaching of children is,catholic beliefs and ways instead you get a teacher and a principle who believe in the islamic ways and beliefs,both should be fired and the bishops should be more concerned by who they hire and what is taught in their schools,deeper back ground checks and ALL TEACHERS should be monitored on the curriculum they are teaching the students,their programs should be gone over by the faculty before being taught to the children,in other words, the teachers need to be held “ACCOUNTABLE FOR THEIR ACTIONS AND TEACHINGS”, I believe NO islamic ways should be taught in the United States,if they still want those ways move back to where you came from,we are fine with “GOD” and the christian faith here in the U.S.

  14. Luis D. Rey says:

    Anne Yenny,
    Great story, it’s now up to the Christians parents at home to teach their children that Obama is not Yomamma, but a Slumist Jihadist and Impostor who is robbing us all and no politician from the opposition wants to confront him !!

  15. betner says:

    Ramadon was in July in 2012 and is expected to be about the same for 2013. So why was the assignment goiven in January… has no meaning. Agree with Julie and this teacher needs to go somewhere else.

  16. Peter Davis says:

    A very good article–thank you Anne. Yes, our kids raised up in Government education (K-12), then steeped in super-liberalism in our colleges, then straight into our classrooms to start their own versions of ultra-liberalism, is indeed just what’s happening. They have no idea what life is, let alone what working for a living is, or what it means to live in what was once the greatest country in the world. And even here, you’re talking about a Catholic school. Incredible. In my family, we have two teachers, both fully indoctrinated in liberal ideology–indeed as you say, both continue believing the same ideology, in spite of it’s failure in liberal test after liberal test. God save us as a nation. Only He can.

    “If my people, which are called by my name, shall humble themselves, and pray, and seek my face, and turn from their wicked ways; then will I hear from heaven, and will forgive their sin, and will heal their land.” II Chronicles 7:14

  17. MyTwentySense says:

    Unfortunately, this is just the beginning. I read about this happening 40
    some years ago. I only wish I had kept the books. It just seemed too far fetched
    at the time, but is becoming more apparent now. I would mention other coming
    events regarding this same issue, but they would not be believed. Keep the faith
    and believe in the Covenant.

  18. dakota says:

    You wasted your money on that school.

  19. Rachel says:

    If the Fed is going “ban crazy” right now…then make yourselves useful. BAN PROPAGANDISTS in our kids’ schools!

  20. Buck says:

    While fasting they should all be instructed that Islam is the most EVIL theocracy in the world because they believe that if you are not a muslim you should be killed . They are allowed to deny this under a rule that says lying is ok if it advances Islam , but that IS what their bible the koran says .

  21. jamgus24 says:

    great article. who would ever think a teacher would be so ignorant to do this? my son’s out of school now and i thank God. i would have gone to the principal too, but it probably wouldn’t have been a pretty sight. i’d also go to the school board.

    these teachers come out of the liberal colleges with their politically correct ideas and don’t have a clue about what the real world is like. pathetic.

  22. Josie says:

    Good article. Thank you for sharing this.
    Islam is just as much a government rule than a religion.
    So whatever happened to the so called seperation of church and state that libs are so fond of bringin up to us? You really handled this issue the best way possible. I would demand the students were giving full explanation of what Islam is also responsible for such as beheadings, stoning, blaming women for being raped etc. Fasting itself is also in the Christian religion so why would this teacher bring it up as Islam practice?

  23. Bill says:

    I do realize it has been thousands of years since I was in school. Back then no one had invented fire or the wheel; we walked to school, both ways, bare foot in the snow, up hill both ways; but, I do believe we did get an education. We did not have educators back the, e had teachers. We said the pledge of allegiance every morning, and any time there was an evening program the pledge was recited again. At one time a superintendent of schools passed away, the day they announced it to the school everyone was given a minute of silent prayer, or if they didn’t want to pray they could sit quietly in honor of the man. When FDR passed an actual prayer was offered up. No one screamed how their rights were infringed on, they all considered everyone else.
    Another strange thing that occurred, they actually taught the History of the United States, and the Constitution. To my knowledge not one teacher ever put forth their own polictics. According to my grandfather, he told me discussing the constitution was normal dinnner table conversation.. After Wilson served as president schools started to drop teaching the constitution. The era of progressives was in full swing.
    I do have to admit, since Obama came to the throne I have read and studied him, the constitution, and the multi-violations he has committed and the violations of his oath of office. Yes, it has turned into a full time job!

    • Anne Yenny says:

      Bill: I went to high school during Watergate, The Viet Nam war, Nixon resigning, etc.I don’t remember one teacher whose politics I could accurately guess. Never thought I’d be thinking the 70s were the good old days …

  24. JoAnn says:

    We avoid these types of problems by homeschooling our children. Giving up the second income is difficult, but we all agree we’d rather skip the extras (ie. vacations, cable, cell phones for the kids, etc.) so they can stay home.

  25. Sister Marie says:

    I was a teacher for 22 yrs before owning my own business. I taught in both Catholic & private schools at a time when discipline and morals were prized values. Today if someone tells me they are a teacher I know immediately their mindset. After a short conversation I know for sure. I feel bad for our children for they are being deprived of so much. What’s happening here is exactly what took place in Russian schools. I remember being in 6th grade {60+ yrs ago} studying about Russia and communism and being very much affected
    by how they took over the countr Now as an old woman I am watching it happen here. The only hope I have is prayer. Only God can help us reverse all of this but we must ask,we must plead with Him for help

  26. JZ says:

    Somehow I can’t help but wonder, when has it gone too far? When will parents, generally speaking, not be absent from their children’s lives. When will parents stop relying on schools to teach what, in my youth was taught at home? I was a latch key kid, came home to an empty house- learned principles, scruples, deductive reasoning- not at school, but at home. When will parents prioritize what really matters- I guess when they recognize the school and government have gotten too involved. Time to cut the school district down to size- for all the reasons you mention in this article…

  27. Donna says:

    Anne,

    I just read the account of your experience after following a link from a friend on Facebook. I would like to ask, quite respectfully, that you not make sweeping generalizations in your attempt to make your point, which is a very valid one, by the way. I agree that offering extra credit for observing the practices of only one religious group is a mismanagement of and a disservice to, the students entrusted to this teacher. However, as a teacher of 20 years, I would like your readers to know that not all teachers are “cut from the same cloth.” Contrary to what you stated, we did not all attend the same colleges, we do not all have a liberal agenda, we do not teach from a single curriculum. In short, I and the teachers I am blessed to work with, are not the personification of evil you would like to portray us as. We firmly believe the responsibility for parenting and shaping core values lies with the parents in the home. We are inspired by the involvement of parents in our daily teaching. We encourage students to talk with their parents about disturbing events and news stories. We do not attempt to provide answers to questions far too complex for simple or pat responses. I encourage my students to think, to ask questions, to recognize the difference between fact and opinion, and to be familiar with the tools the media uses to manipulate our minds and emotions. Please afford me the respect of acknowledging that there are teachers who teach for the right reasons, who teach the core curriculum of reading, math, science, history, and language arts while leaving social and spiritual education in the home where it belongs.

    Proudly teaching Idaho’s children, (in a government school)

    Donna

    • Anne Yenny says:

      Donna: You sound like a great teacher and I’m sure your students and their parents appreciate you. That having been said, at no time did I say that teachers are the personification of evil, nor did I say they have a liberal agenda, nor did I say they all teach from the same curriculum. I do not believe my experience with a teacher who stepped beyond her role as teacher is exceptional. So many people have shared their stories with me that I believe it is common. I believe it’s a problem and that all parents need to be wary. My parents never looked at any of my textbooks and barely met any of my teachers. They were confident they were sending me into a world that shared their values and a society that valued them as parents. It was the case then, but no longer. Thanks for being a great teacher and for your response.

      • Jenifer Lewis says:

        You first wrote, “All teachers have gone to the same colleges and universities, done the same graduate work and been trained using the same curriculum. They have been steeped in liberal ideology.”

        Then you wrote, “…at no time did I say that teachers [...] have a liberal agenda, nor did I say they all teach from the same curriculum.”

        You certainly tarred them all with a very broad brush.

    • Jenifer Lewis says:

      ” [...] there are teachers who teach for the right reasons, who teach the core curriculum of reading, math, science, history, and language arts while leaving social and spiritual education in the home where it belongs.”

      Thank God. I have never thought it right that children be led in prayer by government employees, nor that they receive spiritual education in school.

      I don’t mind them learning about the different beliefs of different faiths in a sociological context in school — after all, where/how else are they going to learn about such things?

      But parents shouldn’t delegate teaching of their faith traditions to school teachers. They should understand that kids don’t live in a vacuum, not even home-schooled kids, and they should be strong and informed in their own beliefs.

  28. CitizenSugarCane says:

    Ms. Yenny, just curious if you enjoyed any (and that means ANY) paid maternity leave time when you were bringing into the world your 4 Perfect PolitiKids. Well, if you were a working gal and did in fact get ANY maternity leave, you can thank the Korrupt Kommie Kommisar Bill Clinton for your benefits. Yes, dear, as shocking and disorienting as that may be to a conservative, family values sort of gal like you, the man conservatives love to hate; the Arch Angel from Arkansas, made sure that YOU and other women all over Amerika got paid while bringing into our lost, liberal world holy, chaste and godly konservative kids. President Clinton’s Family Medical Leave Act, signed into law in 1993, also covers military leave for your brown shirted military offspring. So come on, sugar, devote a few of your putrid posts to Kommie Komrade Klinton and give him credit for the luxury you enjoyed as a Procreating PolitiChick. And, if you weren’t working back when you were spawning, then we all need say no more. You contributed nothing to our national GDP and now a kept woman is telling the world how it should conduct its business. Wow and Amen.

  29. asmalldog says:

    Perhaps the reason the “educational complex” gets kids early and keeps them is because instruction is often based on facts and logic rather than superstition and hand waving.

    If you feel this strongly about all of these problems with education why didn’t you home school your kids? Seems like that’s the best answer for molding their minds with your particular brand of thinking from the start.

  30. rodnchance says:

    This article is nothing more than white-wing nonsense, I do not believe a word of it, if it is true, than why not name the city and school as a bit of evidence. Come on people try do do a bit of logical thinking instead of buying into crap like this.

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