Katherine Kersten in the Minneapolis Star Tribune has an update the Tarek ibn Ziyad Academy – a taxpayer-financed charter school that is under scrutiny for possibly crossing the line on religious programming for public school students.
The Academy, run by a local imam, is housed in the same building as the Muslim Brotherhood-tied Muslim American Society. Officials there plan to continue holding Friday prayers on campus despite a finding by state education officials in May that those prayers were illegal:
"We wanted TiZA to do Friday prayers the way all other public schools" handle similar activities -- "as release time, under state law," said [Deputy Minnesota Department of Education Commissioner Chas] Anderson. In a release-time arrangement, students move off-site for religious activities.
But TiZA said no, according to Anderson. Instead, the school will continue to hold Friday prayer on its premises. Students will lead prayer and staff will be present only "to ensure student safety," said Zaman in a letter to the MDE.
Kersten raises a good point: "But imagine the reaction if prayer time -- reflecting only one faith -- were built into the schedule at, say, Stillwater Junior High."