Christmas play moved in favour of Muslim festival

Parents have expressed outrage after a school cancelled a Christmas play in favour of Muslim Eid celebrations.

In a letter sent by staff at Greenwood Primary School in Nottingham, parents were told: “It is with much regret that we have had to cancel this year’s Christmas performance.

“This is due to the Eid celebrations that take place next week and its effect on our performers.”

After a stream of complaints the school issued a second letter saying the play had “not been cancelled but postponed until the New Year”.

Janette Lynch, whose seven-year-old attends the school was infuriated saying it was “wrong” to move the festive performance of “Cinderella” until after Christmas.

Mrs Lynch commented: “The head has a whole year to plan for Eid and so she should be able to plan for both religious festivals.”

She added: “I have never heard of this at a school. It is the first year my son has been there and a lot of the mums like me were really looking forward to seeing the children on stage.”

The Eid al-Adha is a three-day Muslim festival which would result in Muslim children taking time off school to celebrate with their families at home.

One Muslim parent who has two children at the school agreed that the school should have both celebrations saying: “It’s not that complicated; they should have one event on one day and another on another day, they could have both celebrations at the school.”

Staff at the school issued a statement reassuring parents that Christmas had not been cancelled at Greenwood Junior School but the decision to cancel the Christmas play was taken for “practical reasons”.

This is not the first time a Muslim festival has been favoured. In August during the Muslim month of Ramadan Councillors in Tower Hamlets, East London, were told not to eat in town hall meetings. But at the same time the council renamed a staff Christmas party a ‘festive meal’.

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