School of Education: Legal Seminar Videos

Illegal Discrimination: Scenario 3


Scenario #3

Dr. Erma Jean Sims,
Sonoma State University

Let's take a look at the scenario on religion. Lelia Ahmad is a fifth grader at Heart Elementary School. She recently arrived in the United States from Palestine. Lelia is very religious and a practicing Muslim. As part of her religious duties, she must pray 5 times a day; one of which is at Noon, the same time that all 5th grade classes at Heart Elementary School have recess. Lelia asks her teacher, Ms. Hartless, if she can pray inside the classroom since the other students will be at recess. Lelia tells her teacher she'd feel safer praying in the classroom because some of the students have been calling her a 'Terrorist' and pushing and shoving her at recess. Let's take a few minutes to look at the questions for the religion scenario. Question number one: Are students allowed to pray at school? Question number two: Should Ms.Hartless grant Lelia's request to pray inside the classroom at recess? Question number three: Does calling a student a 'Terrorist" constitute illegal discrimination? And question number four: What responsibility does Ms. Hartless have to address the name-calling and bullying that Lelia has shared with her? Please take a few minutes now to think about these four questions, and what your response to these questions would be.


CREDITS: Instruction and Content by Dr. Erma Jean Sims, Sonoma State University. Videography and Technical support by Mark Niemann, Sonoma State University