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Primary school backpedals after circular requiring Muslim uniforms goes viral

Kompas.com - June 25, 2019

Markus Yuwono, Yogyakarta – The Karangtengah 3 State Primary School in Karangtengah Village, Wonosari sub-district, Gunung Kidul, Yogyakarta, has issued a circular on the enrolment of students for the academic year 2019-20 requiring them to wear Muslim uniforms.

The circular, which was issued on June 18 and signed by Karangtengah Primary School principle Pujiastuti, contained four key points.

First, that for the 2019-20 academic year new Class I students are obliged to wear Muslim uniforms. Second, students in classes II-IV are not yet obliged to switch to Muslim uniforms. Third, for the 2020-22 academic years, all students will be obliged to wear Muslim uniforms.

Finally, the circular also provided example pictures to explain what uniforms students at the primary school are obliged to wear.

There were two examples of Muslim uniforms provided, namely standard red-and-white uniforms and scout uniforms. Male students will be required to wear long-sleeved shirts and long-trousers while female students will wear long dresses, long-sleeved shirts and a jilbab (a short veil covering the hair but leaving the face exposed).

"Yes we wrote it (the circular)", said Karangtengah 3 school principle Pujiastuti when contacted by Kompas.com at her office on Monday June 25. According to Pujiastuti, the circular was written by herself together with other teachers at the school.

Circular goes viral

Pujiastuti said that the policy was adopted because all of the students at the school are Muslim. She claimed that school authorities coordinated on the policy with the Gunung Kidul Youth Education and Sports Office (Disdikpora).

"[We] acknowledge that there are problems [with the circular] so we'll revise it. The (circular) was drafted last night. God willing tomorrow at 8am we will get together with them (the students' parents) again. We'll withdraw the circular", she said.

"We did not intend to discredit other religions", she added. Pujiastuti remarks were made after the circular went viral on social media.

[Translated by James Balowski. The original title of the article was "SD Negeri di Gunung Kidul Ini Wajibkan Siswa Kenakan Seragam Muslim".]

Source: https://regional.kompas.com/read/2019/06/25/09261561/sd-negeri-di-gunung-kidul-ini-wajibkan-siswa-kenakan-seragam-muslim