A teacher working at a school in the Bronx, New York was recently fired after allegedly ripping the hijab off the head of an eight-year-old girl.
Last week, 31-year-old male substitute teacher Oghenetega Edah reportedly demanded that a Muslim student remove her religious scarf as a punishment for “misbehaving” in class at the Bennington School.
Edah, who became a per diem substitute teacher in January this year, was terminated by the New York Department of Education officially on May 3.
“This alleged behavior is completely unacceptable,” New York Department of Education spokesman Michael Aciman was quoted as saying by the New York Post. “This individual was removed from the school immediately and his employment has been terminated.”
According to The New York Post, student Safa Alzockary was playing up in class and sitting in the teacher’s chair without his permission.
The teacher then tapped her on her arm to get her to vacate the chair. When the girl remained seated, the teacher then threatened to take the scarf.
“I’m taking it off,” Edah said as he yanked the hijab off her head. Police reports revealed that the forceful pulling of the scarf also caused an injury to her right eye.
The student was immediately taken to Jacobi Medical Center where a doctor confirmed that her eye did not suffer permanent damage.
A hijab, which is traditionally worn in the presence of adult males outside of their immediate family, is a symbol of modesty and privacy for Muslim women.
The incident happened amid a recent spike in the assaults against Muslims across the United States.