It’s August, and you know what that means: It’s time to go back to school!

Whether you’re starting at a new campus, returning to a favorite stomping ground, or sending your kids off to school, take the time to make sure you know your rights as a Muslim in a public school.

Although bullying reports in schools have decreased in the past year, we still hear from our students and families that anti-Muslim bias persists at every level of academia. These problems are all too common, and we continue to see that our children are not unaffected by the Islamophobic rhetoric that pervades much of today’s discourse.

We believe that an education is the most important part of a young person’s life, and we want to make this school year a safe, happy, and prosperous one for each and every Muslim student in our community. We want you and your families to know your rights and to be empowered to stand up against harassment.

If you are a student, please know that we can help you if you are facing bullying or harassment at school. It’s not acceptable, and you are not alone.

If you are a parent, know that CAIR Oklahoma supports you and your child and can help you work through these issues with your school and district.

In order to protect the rights of Muslim students, CAIR-OK produced the Educator’s Guide to Islamic Religious Practices, a free handbook that outlines some common religious practices and suggests ways to support Muslim students in the classroom. These guides can be shared with your teachers, administrators, and school staff to help facilitate a safe and welcoming classroom environment for your Muslim student. We can also bring live in-person trainings to teachers, staff, and administrators to help cover these topics in more detail.

You can access the PDF version of the guide here: Educator’s Guide to Islamic Religious Practices

If you plan on requesting accommodations for your needs such as prayer breaks, uniform changes, or dietary restrictions, CAIR-OK can help you make these requests in writing and discuss these needs with your school.

Whatever your needs, the CAIR-OK Civil Rights Department is here to help you and your families maximize the value of a good education. We are proud to assist our students in achieving their greatest success, and we look forward to hearing from you.