MURFREESBORO — After more than a half-dozen speakers showed concerns abut Islam’s role in state educational curriculum, Rutherford County Schools Director Don Odom said Thursday he does not want promotion of any religion through social studies classes, the DNJ reports.
“The key factor here is that (the teaching) is historic and not trying to proselytize one way or another,” Odom said during the county’s Board of Education meeting.
Each of the seven speakers referenced concerns about what they alleged was taught in school systems outside of Rutherford County, including the Franklin Special School District, Maury County Schools and Cheatham County Schools.
Several parents and community members spoke of projects or presentations outside of a basic textbook that exhibited the Islamic faith in a way they found offensive, including requiring students to allegedly learn the Muslim declaration of faith.
“We’ve been at it for three years, and we’re not going to let it go away,” said Pam King, a Murfreesboro resident.
Only one speaker, Murfreesboro resident Scott Kozimer, made allegations tied to a Rutherford County Schools student, saying his son had to read the Quran during the state’s standardized testing last spring.
Odom directed many of the comments tied to social studies standards to the state Department of Education, which Odom said would open a public comments system for new social studies standards on Jan. 1.