Demand CUNY to Cancel Classes for Eid

Demand CUNY to Cancel Classes for Eid

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Israt Islam started this petition to CUNY (City University of New York)

Hello and Assalamu Alaikum (May Peace be upon you), 

As Muslim Students, we have been concerned with the lack of mention of Eid Al-Fitr on CUNY's academic calendar. This year, the major Muslim holiday falls on Thursday, May 13th. This holiday commemorates the end of the holy month of Ramadan in which Muslims across the world fast from sunrise to sunset. To the dismay of Muslim students across CUNY campuses, this major Muslim holiday was not recognized on the academic calendar for the Spring 2021 semester. As an instituton that prides itself on diversity and inclusion, conducting classes during Eid Al-Fitr forces Muslim students to make the difficult decision of choosing between observing this sacred holiday or attending lectures, labs, and classes. 

Should Muslim students make the decision to observe the holiday, they risk missing out on valuable class time which can hurt their academics, even if there is no de facto academic penalty for excusing themselves on the basis of religious accomodations. This is crucial to consider, especially in a time where Eid Al-Fitr falls on the eve of finals in CUNY schools. Classes during this time are likely to be review sessions that can heavily influence students’ academic performance, especially during the remote learning session. Ultimately, Muslim students will face an unfair yet easily avoidable academic disadvantage for practicing their faith.

Approximately 1 in every 10 New York City resident identifies as Muslim. Consequently, NYC Public Schools formally recognized both Eid Al-Fitr and Eid Al-Adha in 2015, granting their students the day off. CUNY must cancel classes on Eid to allow Muslim students to comfortably observe their holiday without missing instruction or exams in order to to maintain their commitment to inclusion and diversity.

As of Sunday, March 14th 2021, the CUNY University Student Senate unanimously adopted a resolution affirming that Muslim students should not have to choose between our faith and education. They are calling upon CUNY Central to recognize May 13th, and institute a permanent holiday for Eid every year. The entire NYC public school system has made the critical change to include both Eid Al-Fitr and Eid Al-Adha as a holiday since 2015. With CUNY honoring holidays including Lunar New Year, Christmas, Rosh Hashanah, and Yom Kippur - honoring Eid Al-fitr must be the next step. We cannot allow Muslim students to be excluded. We hope that you will be on the right side of history and stand with thousands of Muslim students within the CUNY system that observe our most holy holidays.

Despite the passing of the USS resolution, we are still waiting on how the CUNY Chancellor wishes to proceed. Please sign on in support of the cancellation of classes on not only this upcoming Eid, but all future Eid holidays to come.

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