• Sweden edition
 
City slammed for 'special treatment' of Muslim kids

City slammed for 'special treatment' of Muslim kids

Published: 11 May 2012 17:03 GMT+02:00
Updated: 11 May 2012 17:03 GMT+02:00

"My first reaction after reading was total shock: how can schools so casually force children into more segregation and social exclusion?" women's and equal rights activist Bahareh Andersson wrote on the Swedish opinion website Newsmill.

Her comments came in response to reading a document outlining an agreement between education officials in Jönköping municipality and local Muslim groups ensuring special treatment for Muslim children enrolled in area schools.

"It's not only about exceptions for food, but it's also about an exception from human rights. Children learning from an early age that gender segregation is something natural and that love without marriage is a sin and immoral," wrote Andersson.

"Why do people want immigrant children to be indoctrinated with values from the Middle Ages?"

Following the publication of Andersson's article, a non-profit organization dedicated to informing immigrant women about their rights in Sweden, Never Forget Pela and Fadime (Glöm aldrig Pela och Fadime -- GAPF), reported education officials from Jönköping to the Swedish National Agency for Education (Skolverket).

According to the group, the school district's agreement amounts an unauthorized exercise of control over the affected students as well as a limitation on their life choices.

The five page document outlining the agreement was first drawn up in 1994 and has been revised periodically over the years.

The most recent revisions – carried out in June 2011 – involved how schools should deal with Ramadan and other details surrounding how religious holidays would be treated in local schools.

According to current head of Jönköping's education administration Stephan Rapp, the document's seven main points have remained essentially the same since they were first drawn up.

Among other things, the document includes guidance ensuring that schools will allow Muslim girls to shower in their underwear following physical education classes and that students would be allowed to skip out on study visits of class trips that involve overnight stays.

According to the agreement, students fasting for Ramadan are also exempt from attending physical education classes and representatives from local Muslim congregations are also granted access to the school's kitchen to observe how the school's food is prepared.

Rapp admitted to the TT news agency that the conditions outlined in the document could be sees as providing special treatment for Muslim students.

"Yes, and we take that very seriously," he said, adding that city education officials plan on reviewing the document at a meeting next week.

"That could lead to anything from changes to that it is scrapped."

Rapp emphasized that the agreement would be reviewed "closely" to ensure it complies with Swedish law.

Nor was he aware of other similar agreements in other municipalities.

Meanwhile, GAPF, along with other groups, have reported the matter to national education authorities in Sweden, arguing that the agreement legitimizes violence, oppression and control over Muslim children.

"Schools have often given these children a little breathing room. We meet children who say that at school the can relax and take a breath. There isn't a dad, cousin, or brother running around in the halls and controlling them," Sara Mohammad, chair of GAPF, told TT.

"School should be a neutral environment where they avoid being controlled. Children aren't born with religious values, rather it is parents' traditional convictions that are forced on the children. Schools and municipalities shouldn't contribute to that."

Mohammad added that she also plans to report Jönköping municipality to the police for professional misconduct.

GAPF is also looking into whether there are similar agreements in other municipalities.

TT/The Local/dl

Follow The Local on Twitter

Related links:

Don't miss...X
Left Right
Today's headlines
Swimrun
Record win at Sweden's tough island race
Photo: Jakob Edholm/ÖTILLÖ14

Record win at Sweden's tough island race

Two Swedes crushed last year's course record at the Swimrun world championship in Stockholm's archipelago on Monday. READ  

Sweden reveals Academy Award submission
Swedish director Ruben Östlund on set. Photo. TT

Sweden reveals Academy Award submission

The movie set to represent Sweden at the 2015 Academy Awards was revealed on Monday, a film that has already won awards abroad. READ  

Amphetamines
Hidden forest drug stash leads to prosecution

Hidden forest drug stash leads to prosecution

A 53-year-old man has been prosecuted after police in western Sweden made one of their largest drug seizures in the area. READ  

Man shot dead in hunting accident
Photo: Hunter Desportes/Flickr

Man shot dead in hunting accident

UPDATED: Police in northern Sweden say a man was killed on Monday morning after what they described as a "hunting accident". READ  

Pirate Bay Swede's trial set for final stage

Pirate Bay Swede's trial set for final stage

The mother of Swedish Pirate Bay co-founder Gottfrid Svartholm Warg has told The Local about her son's "suffering" in jail ahead of the final stages of his trial. READ  

Suspected Ebola case ruled out in Sweden
Photo: Fredrik Sandberg/TT

Suspected Ebola case ruled out in Sweden

UPDATED: Officials at a Stockholm hospital reported that they had found a suspected case of the Ebola virus on Sunday night. But the case was dismissed on Monday. READ  

Murderer on the loose after breakout

Murderer on the loose after breakout

A 34-year-old man who killed a child is on the run after he broke out of a psychiatric ward in central Sweden. READ  

Skåne floods
Huge clear up underway after Skåne floods
A Malmö bus under water. Photo: Stig Åke Jönsson/TT

Huge clear up underway after Skåne floods

Flood waters subsided in the southern Sweden region of Skåne on Monday, after flash flooding saw chaos on roads and trains at the weekend. READ  

Elections 2014
Sweden's Alliance reveals full manifesto
Photo: Henrik Montgomery/TT

Sweden's Alliance reveals full manifesto

UPDATED: Leaders of the Moderate Party, the Centre Party, the Liberal Party and the Christian Democrats have announced their complete list of election promises in Stockholm's Nacka. READ  

Zlatan scores hat trick in PSG thrashing
Photo: AP

Zlatan scores hat trick in PSG thrashing

Champions Paris Saint-Germain thumped Saint-Etienne 5-0 as Bordeaux saw their 100 percent record at the start of the Ligue 1 season ended on Sunday with a 1-1 draw against Bastia. READ  

RECEIVE OUR NEWSLETTER AND ALERTS
Tech
Sweden's highest peak to lose title next year
Politics
How immigration became a key election issue
Society
Brit's life in Sweden becomes BBC radio show
Gallery
People-watching August 27
Gallery
Top ten false friends in Swedish
Blog updates

25 August

Hit och dit, här och där (The Swedish Teacher) »

" Hej igen! A common challenge for Swedish language students are the location adverbs hit/här, dit/där, hem/hemma etc. Some of the location adverbs come in two versions. We should use one type of location adverb when we use a verb describes where we are, and we should use the other type of location adverb when we the verb..." READ »

 

25 August

The Dollar Store (Blogweiser) »

"A dollar store in Sweden. Blog post: http://t.co/tNuuvcP1q0 #USD #greenbacks #sweden #sverige pic.twitter.com/RHFAYf7U1k — Joel Sherwood (@joeldsherwood) August 23, 2014 There’s a chain here in Sweden called The DollarStore. This name always stood out to me in a country where they don’t use dollars. I went there for the first time this weekend. They actually accepted greenbacks..." READ »

 
 
 
National
Roma advocate scoops Wallenberg prize
Society
Meet the man who made a Swedish store recall its high heels for kids
Business & Money
'How I came to run my own business in Sweden'
Politics
Expert explains why Sweden's election oozes uncertainty
National
City plays Schindler's List theme at Nazi rally
Society
For Stockholm Fashion Week, here's the A-Z of Swedish fashion
National
'Amnesiac' man avoids deportation for ten years
Gallery
Princess Estelle through the years
Business & Money
Swedish city all set for six-hour workday trial
Business & Money
Five golden rules for the Swedish job hunt
Sponsored Article
Graduates: Insure your income in Sweden with AEA
Gallery
People-watching August 22-24
National
Armed royal guards caught (very) drunk on the job
National
Sweden orders textbook on Roma discrimination
Gallery
Violent anti-Nazi demonstrations in Malmö
Society
A closer look at Sweden's five official minority languages
Gallery
See the destruction from the southern Sweden floods
Politics
'Sweden Democrats hold the key to elections'
Society
Swedes celebrate first day of smelly fish season
Sponsored Article
Find out what gives this Swedish school executive appeal
Sponsored Article
Introducing...Your finances in Stockholm
Sponsored Article
Introducing...Housing in Stockholm
Latest news from The Local in Austria

More news from Austria at thelocal.at

Latest news from The Local in Switzerland

More news from Switzerland at thelocal.ch

Latest news from The Local in Germany

More news from Germany at thelocal.de

Latest news from The Local in Denmark

More news from Denmark at thelocal.dk

Latest news from The Local in Spain

More news from Spain at thelocal.es

Latest news from The Local in France

More news from France at thelocal.fr

Latest news from The Local in Italy

More news from Italy at thelocal.it

Latest news from The Local in Norway

More news from Norway at thelocal.no

747
jobs available
Swedish Down Town Consulting & Productions
Swedish Down Town Consulting & Productions is an innovative business company which provides valuable assistance with the Swedish Authorities, Swedish language practice and general communications. Call 073-100 47 81 or visit:
www.swedishdowntown.com
PSD Media
PSD Media is marketing company that offers innovative solutions for online retailers. We provide modern solutions that help increase traffic and raise conversion. Visit our site at:
http://psdmedia.se