A confrontation over a head scarf in the lunchroom of Seaside High School between a school supervisor and a 13-year-old student has led for a call for a public apology from the official by a major Islamic organization.

The San Francisco/Bay Area chapter of the Council on American-Islamic Relations, known as CAIR, said the girl, an incoming freshman, was told by the supervisor Tuesday to remove her hajib, an Islamic head scarf.

After explaining that she wore it for religious reasons, the supervisor, according to the CAIR statement, then demanded in front of more than 100 other students, “You have to take it off now.”

The girl, who was taking a summer algebra class, then broke down in tears, said CAIR, but did not remove her scarf.

CAIR and Seaside High both declined to identify the girl’s family.

School officials said the supervisor has offered to apologize.

“The employee involved did offer an apology on the day of the event,” said Sydney Renwick, Seaside High principal. “We offered to make a personal one, because of the situation.”

But Safaa Ibrahim, CAIR’s chapter executive director, said in a statement that “because the student was humiliated in public, it is only reasonable to make an apology or statement in public to mitigate the damage caused by the supervisor’s unacceptable actions.”


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