The school district's policy for years has been that if one's religious holy days fall during scheduled school time, the employee may get written permission beforehand to take the day and must "make up" the lost work time through other activities.
Apparently, unbenounced to anyone, the policy has now changed and this is the email that Jani received today.
I am in receipt of the religious absence request form for Janet toobserve Winter Solstice on 12/21/05. I am not able to grant thisrequest. The religious holiday has to be one in which the religious doctrine prohibits the employee from working on that date.
So here are my questions.
1. When did the administrator who sent the email become well-schooled in pagan teachings to know whether working on a sabbat is or is not part of the doctrine?
2. Could someone please point me to the passage in the Bible that declares that Christians shall not work on Christmas?
Jani immediately forwarded the message to her union. They are attending to it immediately and have a meeting scheduled with the district on Friday.
Meanwhile, we've filed for an excused absence for Rowan for Solstice and her school's secretary has already logged it on the calendar. Poor Rowan is bummng though, because she will be marked as absent and won't be able to get the "perfect attendance" certificates that the principal hands out at the end of the semester.
Rowan's very insightful observation was that kids who celebrate Christmas aren't penalized with being marked absent, because that day is marked as a "day off" from school for everyone.
I know this is an on-going battle that other religious groups have been fighting for years. Sad, sad, sad..that one form of "sacredness" gets to control expectations and calendars for us all. I'm completely in support of anyone taking their religious and secular holidays..tradition is what helps keep our souls fed. Just how do we create a "win/win" with this is the age-old question.