Hijab: UI international school resolves to retain dress code

The International School Ibadan says it will continue to maintain the dress code of the institution, which has been in existence for 55 years.

This was made public as part of the resolutions arrived at after a meeting of the  Parent Teacher Association.

The News Agency of Nigeria reports that there was tension in the school on Monday as the morning assembly had to be suspended following the appearance of some pupils in Hijab.

NAN also reports that a group, Muslim Parents Forum, had on Friday petitioned the school’s management, insisting that female students were entitled to the use of  Hijab

Although the school’s assembly did not hold on Monday,  the students remained within the school’s premises while the gates were shut.

But speaking after the meeting, the Chairman of the Parent Teacher Association, Dr Kazeem Olaniyan, said the forum became necessary in order to forestall a crisis in the school.

He appealed to aggrieved Muslim parents to keep the peace so that the school could move forward.

“Whatever resolutions come out of this is the decision of the Governing Board and not mine,” he said.

He, however,  said that some aggrieved parents had written a letter which would be responded to by the Governing Board.

Olaniyan also dismissed reports that the school was shut, saying only the Governing Board could issue such directive.

The chairman also disclosed that the Governing Board would meet on Wednesday to deliberate on the way forward.

“I will not see anything that will divide us and play along, I will rather work for unity,” he said.

He added that there was no crisis before a mosque was built in the school, adding that there is presently no church within the school’s premises.

Olaniyan further explained that Arabic Studies and Islamic Religious Knowledge were  introduced in the school without crisis.

Some parents, who spoke on the sidelines of the meeting,  said that the status quo on dress code should remain.

“I have lived in the North and I know what crisis can trigger;  whoever wants  to practise a religion should do so in his or her house

“This is a secular  school and we  should consider  the psychological and social effect of a crisis on our children,’’ Mrs Rasidat Mustapha said.

Mrs Moronfolu Adedoyin, on her part,  said  “we are too divisive, religion should not be forced down the throat of ISI, there are other contending issues we should face.”

Mr Awosanmi Ade, a traditionalist, said his  children used to wear  beads  on their wrists.

Ade, however, said he ordered that the beads be removed as soon as the children  enrolled in the school as they were not part of the dress code.

“Because I wanted my children to have ISI education, I quickly ordered the beads to be removed  since they were  not part of the school uniform.

“Please do not  allow religion to divide this school, ” he said.

NAN reports that other resolutions reached at the meeting included that  class allocation of students should not be done in a way to segregate them.

It was also resolved that a committee should be put in place to look into other grievances while security should be tightened.


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