Father of 12-year-old Muslim 'terrorist' student says teachers should avoid bias

Published 08.04.2016 21:49
Updated 08.04.2016 21:56

All teachers should refrain from discrimination, according to the father of a 12-year-old Muslim student who was called a "terrorist" by his teacher in Texas.

"Teachers in the U.S. should treat the students of minority groups, especially Muslim students, very sensitively," Malik Abushaban told Anadolu Agency.

"We don't want to face this kind of a discrimination. We don't want to see the teacher's political and ideological reflections on our kids and not only for us but for all minority groups."

Abushaban said because his pre-teen son, Waleed, is a Muslim, does not mean he is a terrorist.

While watching the comedy, Bend It Like Beckham, the seventh-grade honor student laughed out loud and was called "terrorist" by his teacher in front of the class.

The elder Abushaban said he was surprised when he received a call from his son from school. His son told him that the teacher called him a terrorist and sent him to the principal's office.

"I told my son to ask his teacher to apologize to him in front of the class. However, the teacher openly said in the class that he won't speak to my son," Abushaban said, adding the teacher, who has not yet been named, not only refused to apologize but to also speak.

Waleed told local media that as a result of the ordeal, he has been subjected to verbal harassment from other students who call him "bomb".

After drawing media attention, the school initiated an investigation into the teacher at First Colony Middle School in Sugar Land Texas.

The teacher is currently on administrative leave and does not teach during the investigation, according to Malik Abushaban, who said his family will await the outcome of the investigation and will pursue legal action if necessary.

Meanwhile, the school's administration released a statement that said the teacher used "terrorist" to give provide an example of negative clichés, but added that it was but not the right term to use.

Texas was the scene of a similar incident in September, when 14-year-old Muslim Ahmed Mohammed was detained after taking to school a homemade clock that his teacher and authorities said resembled a bomb.

The case drew international attention and garnered support for the budding inventor form luminaries that included Facebook founder Mark Zuckerberg and President Barack Obama who invited Ahmed to display his clock at the White House.

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