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CAIR Welcomes SCOTUS Rejection of Challenge to Maryland Coursework on Islam, Affirms Education as Tool to Promote Diversity

(BALTIMORE, MD, 10/15/19) – The Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR), the nation’s largest Muslim civil rights and advocacy organization, today welcomed the U.S. Supreme Court’s decision to reject a challenge of a Maryland public high school’s classroom assignments on Islam, and affirmed education on major world religions as a critical tool to help promote diversity and inclusivity. 

SEE: Supreme Court rejects challenge to public school coursework on Islam 

Pulse Poll respondents say Supreme Court should avoid Md. student’s appeal

The case involved a former student at LaPlata High School in Charles County who argued that the unit on “the Muslim World” in her World History class violated her constitutional rights by requiring her to complete an assignment on the pillars of Islam.

The parents found issue with completing a fill-in-the-blanks exercise identifying “Allah” as the Muslim god and Muhammad as his “messenger.” 

The student refused to complete some of the class assignments, resulting in a lower grade. In response, she and her family filed a lawsuit against school administrators citing First Amendment rights. 

The 4th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals also sided with the principal and vice principal, ruling the teachings “did not impermissibly endorse any religion.”

“In an increasingly interconnected global society, it’s critical that students be responsibly educated about all of the world’s major religions, including Islam,” said CAIR Director of Maryland Outreach Zainab Chaudry. “CAIR applauds the Supreme Court’s common-sense decision to reject this unreasonable challenge and hope this development will help curb the spread of misinformation that help fuel Islamophobia and the irrational fear of Muslims.” 

Earlier this year, the civil rights organization welcomed a federal appeals court ruling that school administrators did not violate the student’s freedom of religion rights by providing the assignment. 

SEE: CAIR Applauds ”˜Common-Sense’ Federal Appeals Court Ruling on Maryland School’s Islam Assignment

CAIR’s mission is to protect civil rights, enhance understanding of Islam, promote justice, and empower American Muslims.

La misión de CAIR es proteger las libertades civiles, mejorar la comprensión del Islam, promover la justicia, y empoderar a los musulmanes en los Estados Unidos.


CONTACT: CAIR Director of Maryland Outreach Zainab Chaudry,, 410-971-6062


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