No running for girls

A heart-rending item in the Sydney Morning Herald a few days ago, about girls at an Islamic school being banned from running.

Girls at Al-Taqwa College have been banned from running at sporting events because the principal believes it may cause them to lose their virginity, former teachers claim.

The schools regulator, the Victorian Registration and Qualifications Authority, is investigating the allegations, which have been referred to the state and federal education ministers.

In a letter sent to the education ministers this week, a former teacher said female students were being discriminated against at the Truganina school.

“The principal holds beliefs that if females run excessively, they may ‘lose their virginity’,” the letter said.

“The principal believes that there is scientific evidence to indicate that if girls injure themselves, such as break their leg while playing soccer, it could render them infertile.”

He probably believe if they study too hard they will get “brain fever.”

The SMH has a picture of a sad letter from the students about their disappointment.

Concerned female students expressed their concerns in a handwritten letter to the principal, saying it was unfair that the cross country event had been cancelled.

“It was really shocking to find out it has been cancelled because of the excuse girls can’t run,” the students said.

“Just because we are girls doesn’t mean we can’t participate in running events. It also doesn’t say girls can’t run in the hadith (the sayings of Muhammad).”

The students said parents were annoyed by the decision and “think that girls and boys should both be allowed to participate equally.”

Another former Al-Taqwa College teacher backed the claims. “I was told the girls weren’t allowed to participate. The reason was they might over-exert themselves and lose their virginity or be rendered infertile.”

What about the boys? If they over-exert themselves, their balls explode. That’s a scientific fact.

H/t Kausik


  1. mithrandir says

    “Just because we are girls doesn’t mean we can’t participate in running events. It also doesn’t say girls can’t run in the hadith (the sayings of Muhammad).”

    This one stood out for me. Not that Islam doesn’t have plenty of misogyny built in already, but it is notable how many people with religious authority use it as an excuse to go above and beyond even the misogyny their religion prescribes.

  2. peterh says

    That school has a principal whose education is severely lacking; why were standards for the position set so abysmally low (and in the dark ages to boot)?

  3. mildlymagnificent says

    Well, to be honest, it’s quite legitimate to describe some occasions of sexual activity as decidedly athletic.

    It’s also quite obvious that that has nothing to do with schoolgirl running.

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