Excerpt:

Under a settlement reached with the U.S. Department of Justice, the Philadelphia School District will have to revise its attire-and-appearance policy for school police officers and provide training in matters related to people who have religious concerns.

The settlement follows a lawsuit filed in March against the school district by the Justice Department on behalf of school cop Siddiq Abu-Bakr, who is Muslim and who has a long beard for religious reasons.

The school district in 2010, under a new police chief, had implemented a policy that prohibited officers from having a beard longer than a quarter-inch. Under the settlement, filed in federal court yesterday, "we don't have to change that" policy, said Talib Ellison, an assistant general counsel for the school district.


Read the complete original version of this item...