SAN FRANCISCO (KRON) — On Tuesday the San Francisco Board of Education voted to recognize Eid as an official school holiday, but one member of the board voted no.
Arab students at Wallenberg High School created a petition to include Eid as an official holiday in San Francisco Unified School District, and the students gathered over 800 signatures. The Arab Resource and Organizing Center put forward a resolution to the school board that was introduced by commissioner Matt Alexander. The board voted in favor of the resolution, but commissioner Ann Hsu cast her vote against it.
Last week, KRON4 reported on backlash from Hsu’s comments about Black and brown students not having enough family support at home to be academically successful. KRON4’s Haaziq Madyun reached out to Hsu for a comment on her Eid vote:
I respect and appreciate everyone who advocated in support of creating a school holiday for the holy occasion of Eid. Changing the school calendar impacts everyone involved with SFUSD – students, families, teachers, and staff. A decision of this magnitude should be made by first establishing a formal criteria and process for evaluating all new school holiday requests. For example, criteria could include: whether the proposal is already a federal or state holiday, or the percentage of our student population practicing a holiday. Instead of making decisions based on political pressure, our students and families deserve a thoughtful and nuanced process that takes all factors into account.Commissioner Ann Hsu
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Parents and student organizers celebrated the vote on Wednesday, calling it a victory for their efforts.
All students will now have the opportunity to learn about Eid, build with the growing Arab and Muslim community in SF and have space to honor their cultures and communities.Nour Bouhassoun, Arab Youth Organizer, Arab Resource and Organizing Center
The Board’s vote comes just as City College Board trustee Alan Wong announced he will propose making Lunar New Year a holiday for City College of San Francisco. According to a statement from Wong, the suggested change is supported by the Chinese Chamber of Commerce and the APA Heritage Foundation.