Students threatening teachers. Teachers threatening students. Corruption in the classrooms, the hallways, and, eventually, becoming a national scandal – all part of daily life at an Islamic high school in Rotterdam. There, according to a recent article in Dutch daily NRC Handelsblad, non-Muslim teachers are pressured to pass failing Muslim students, while Muslim teachers hold secretive classes instructing their pupils on the evils of European culture.
And that's only part of the story.
The Ibn Ghaldoun school has a long history of controversy, but returned recently to the spotlight after it was discovered that a group of its students had stolen copies of the national final exam, administered to all Dutch students, and were selling it over the Internet. Dozens were found to have cheated, including at least one young woman who, having researched the answers, spoke them into her smartphone and played the recording during test-taking, hiding the headphones under her hijab. The result: the tests had to be repeated, even by those who had not seen them in advance – and so students around the country whose families had planned to take their summer holidays were, in many cases, forced to forfeit flights and other travel arrangements (often at substantial cost).