Iranian Baha’i School Children
In April 2007, the Bahá’í International Community reported that Baha’i students in primary and secondary schools throughout Iran were being increasingly harassed, vilified, and held up to abuse because of their Faith. Many incidents of mistreatment were reported at the time, and it appears that these incidents have been escalating in recent months.
Bahá’í school children in Iran are being subjected to cruel and harsh treatment as part of a government-sponsored campaign against the Bahá’í community. Reports indicate that Baha’i pupils are secretly monitored and reported upon by school officials, are subjected to vilification by their teachers and school administrators, and are forced to listen to vile and outrageous tales about the teachings of their Faith and the moral behavior of Baha’is. It has now become clear that Baha’i pupils in primary and secondary schools are being expelled on the basis of the stipulation in the “Golpaygani memorandum” that Baha’is “can be enrolled in schools provided they have not identified themselves as Baha’is”. Pupils are often expelled when they identify themselves as Baha’is, when they try to defend the Faith against utterly unfounded accusations, or when they respectfully attempt to correct gross misrepresentations of the Faith’s history in the textbooks they must study. It has also been reported that Baha’is in secondary schools are to be given grades sufficient to graduate but too low to allow entrance to university.
To learn more about some of the incidents that have been taking place from June 2007 to January 2008, click here to get a summary.
How can you help?
People are encouraged to raise awareness about this deplorable maltreatment of young Bahá’í pupils with groups that focus on the interests of children, such as parents of young children, parent-teacher organizations, teachers and teachers’ unions, principals and headmasters, school boards and community education organizations.
If you are a member of a professional teachers association or parent-teacher association, or a school administration association, please approach your colleagues about what actions they might take.