Last month a gymnastics teacher at the André-Chavanne school [in Geneva] prevented her pupils from participating in a gymnastics lesson on the athletics field. The reason? The stadium is close to the mosque of Petit-Saconnex and three years ago, female students in their gym kit were insulted by worshippers. The explanations shocked parents.
"I find it unacceptable that my 16-year-old daughter cannot run in gym kit on the pretext that the mosque is close to the school playing field!", the father of one 16-year-old pupil said angrily.
But let us go back to that Friday at the start of October, the day of prayer. The daughters insisted on running outside, like the boys. To justify her refusal, the teacher recalled that in 2009, a class of girls, who also went out on Friday, had been insulted... The worshippers had even thrown soft drinks cans at them. An incident that sparked a strong reaction from both the Department of Public Education and the mosque. The mosque officials apologised and then promised to do everything so that such incidents did not reoccur. The Department refrained from filing a legal complaint.