Florida teacher fired after accusing praying Muslim students of doing ‘Magic’

A Florida teacher was fired after she was caught interrupting Muslim students as they prayed, stepping on their hands, and accusing them of practicing “magic” in a TikTok video that has since gone viral.

The video was posted Thursday and has since raked up more than a million likes — shows three students at Franklin Academy, performing a prayer as one recites “Surah At-Tin” from the Quran.

As the students pray, the teacher who has not been publicly identified can be heard in the background saying, “Hold on, this is my office, and you all doing all this magic.”


She then blows a whistle to try and get their attention and walks directly through their prayers, even appearing to kick one of the student’s hands, according to the clip.

“I believe in Jesus, so I’m interrupting the floor,” the teacher said, before asking again why they were in her office.

The students ignored the teacher and continued to pray while someone else jumps in to respond, saying: “They’re praying.” Muslims participate in five daily prayers that require they keep their head bowed and prostate a number of times without interruption.

In a statement about the incident, Franklin Academy released a statement, saying: “Earlier today, a very troubling TikTok video was shared with our leadership team. The video appears to show a teacher interrupting students during a moment of prayer. Upon receipt of the video, organizational and school leadership began immediately investigating the situation.”

The school then noted that it “does not tolerate discriminatory behavior.”

“While we do not discuss personnel matters, we can share with you that the teacher in question is no longer a member of the Franklin Academy staff,” the statement continued.

“We thank our parents for partnering with us and trusting us with their child(ren) and their education. Through the continued communication that we foster as a team, our schools can only become stronger.”

The Council on American-Islamic Relations’ Florida chapter said incidents like this are why it’s important for school staff to have knowledge of other faith practices.

In 2022, CAIR-Florida “noted a sharp rise in inbound calls regarding anti-Muslim bullying and discrimination in school.”

About 48% of Muslim families surveyed by the Institute for Social Policy and Understanding reported having a school-aged child who “faced religious-based bullying” in 2022, according to this report.

“One-fifth of Muslim families report that the bullying occurred nearly every day,” the non-profit said in the report.

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