High School Teacher’s Lesson In Arabic Calligraphy Prompts Closure Of Entire School District
BY JUDD LEGUM
Schools in Augusta County Virginia will be closed on Friday after a calligraphy lesson prompted a disturbing anti-Muslim backlash.
The controversy started when a lesson in World Geography class asked students to try to copy an example of Arabic calligraphy. The phrase was a statement of Islamic faith but the students were “not asked to translate the statement or to recite it.” Rather, the purpose of the exercise was to give students an “idea of the artistic complexity of calligraphy.”
The class covered a variety of religions including Christianity, Judaism and Buddhism.
Some students refused to complete the assignments and several parents protested at a meeting earlier this week. Kimberly Herndon, the parent who organized the protest, called the lesson “indoctrination.”
“She gave up the Lord’s time. She gave it up and gave it to Mohammed,” Herndon said.
Other parents called for the teacher, Cheryl LaPorte, to be fired.
This prompted over-the-top national coverage from places like Fox News and the story quickly spread on social media.
The attention resulted in “voluminous phone calls and electronic mail locally and from outside the area” to the school district. A statement from Augusta County
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