October is Islamic Heritage Month - 2023

October is Islamic Heritage Month - 2023
Posted on 09/28/2023
October is Islamic Heritage Month - 2023

October is Islamic Heritage Month in Canada. This is a time to celebrate, inform and engage with Islamic history and culture and learn about the many contributions that Muslim people have made to Canada and beyond. 

Muslims are ethnically diverse and represent many interpretations of Islam and practice their faith throughout the world. The OCDSB works to be aware of this diversity when teaching and speaking about Muslim identities, stories and realities. We will be reflecting, celebrating and learning about Islamic history and culture through:

  • Providing classroom resources and activities that explore Islamic excellence across all areas of life
  • Encouraging engagement with Muslim community partners for learning opportunities such as guest speakers
  • Supporting schools in developing awareness and understanding of the contributions of Muslim Canadians through announcements, displays and activities
  • Ensuring that Muslim students and staff have easy and safe access to spaces for performing the Salah and engaging in reflection during the school and work day
  • Supporting engagement through Muslim Student Associations in schools and an Employee Resource Group for Muslim staff 
  • Developing staff awareness of cultural practices, traditions and observances and accommodation practices
  • Promoting positive reflection and representation of Muslim identities and standing up to Islamophobia

In celebration of Islamic Heritage Month, Muslim students in grades 7-12 are invited to join a virtual weekly Google Hangout. This is a student-led and student-driven space open to all students who are a part of a Muslim family, including those who are exploring their Muslim identities. Meets will take place from 4:00 p.m. to 5:00 p.m. on each Monday in October, with the exception of Monday, October 9th due to the Thanksgiving holiday. More information has been sent to students and families via email.  

As part of our District's commitment to human rights, equity and inclusion, we work to identify and address barriers so that everyone may feel valued while participating and excelling in the OCDSB community. In addition to the protection and promotion of learning and working conditions that value and represent Muslim identities and perspectives, it is our moral and legal obligation to address incidents of Islamophobia, racism and hate when they arise. Our response includes concrete actions through education and raising awareness so that we may foster and maintain safe, welcoming and inclusive learning and working environments. 

If you see or experience Islamophobia or any other kind of hate or discrimination we encourage you to report it to a trusted staff member, your principal or vice principal, or to the Office of the Human Rights and Equity Advisor. The OCDSB is committed to protecting and upholding the human rights of all students, staff and families.

As we enter Islamic Heritage Month, the OCDSB reaffirms its commitment to cultivating an environment where all students, families and staff feel safe and protected expressing who they are; where critical thought and learning is encouraged and differences are respected; and where accountability is assured for acts of Islamophobia, anti-Muslim hate, and all forms of hatred, racism and discrimination.

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