Eid Becomes District Holiday

Eid Becomes District Holiday
Posted on 06/22/2021
The Montclair Board of Education announced at its meeting on Monday, June 21, that the Muslim holiday Eid al-Fitr will be added as a recognized holiday on the district calendar. Eid al-Fitr marks the end of Ramadan, the Muslim holy month of fasting and is celebrated with prayers, family visits, gift-giving and charity.

Earlier this month, Bradford student Laila Khan first approached Principal Frances Aboushi requesting that Eid become an official district holiday. Her father then created a Change.org petition dubbed “Laila’s Referendum,” in which he wrote “this request was born out of the fact her world includes many family members and friends in New Jersey and New York who were off but she was not. As she is my little activist, of course we encouraged her and support her stance.”

He continued, “She pointed out that several other religious holidays were acknowledged and celebrated  but hers was not and this put a stress on her that she would like to eliminate. An 'excused' absence is fine, but the work she misses still has to be made up (not the end of the world, but clearly not fair when compared to others). She pleaded for inclusivity from her school and my wife and I plead for your support from and for our town.

They then brought their petition (which to date has 2, 671 signatures) to the Board on June 2 and last night, the Board approved moving forward with making Eid a district holiday beginning next calendar year. Eid falls out on May 3, 2022.

The Board and Superintendent Ponds invited Laila to the June 21 meeting to mark this meaningful and momentous occasion. Ponds thanked Laila for her advocacy and said, “As a District that prides itself in cultural awareness and inclusivity, every tangible step we take to honor this mantra is an important one for the district and the community.”

Read more about Laila Khan’s advocacy and petition.
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