In Pioltello, in the province of Milan, the Iqbal Masiq nursery, primary and secondary school closes its doors for Ramadan. The multi-purpose institution named after the Pakistani child who symbolized the fight against child slavery will close its doors on April 10, in line with the closure schedule. The decision was passed by the school board ten months ago. It is for this reason that in September, students entered school a day early. The school has 7 complexes: two nursery schools, three primary schools, two middle schools. There are 1,300 students in total, explains director Alessandro Fanfoni to Corriere della Sera of Milan: “We have 43 percent of students of other nationalities, but even among the Italians there are at least a hundred second-generation students.”

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And again: “So we reach 50 percent. They are not all linked to Arab culture, but the majority come from Egypt, Morocco, Pakistan. In this context, it happened that on the day of Eid-El-Fitr, half of the students, or more, stayed at home.” The decision, reports the director, “results from reasoning put forward by certain teachers, then unanimously accepted by all. This was not a favor for the Arab community and nothing was taken away from anyone. It is certainly not a gesture that erases the cultural identity of the state in which we find ourselves, it is simply the recognition of a specificity of our school context.” Even Mayor Ivonne Cosciotti agrees: “An exaggerated controversy is being created, they want to throw it at “us” and “them”. Although these guys are friends, there have never been any acts of racism. In our schools there are crucifixes and nativity scenes. »

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The decision was contested by the League. Deputy Prime Minister Matteo Salvini spoke of an “unacceptable choice, contrary to the values, identity and traditions of our country. This is not the model of Italy and Europe that we want.” The director instead explained what happens during these hours: “I receive insults privately on social networks, as if I had committed an act of sacrilege. I am saddened to see that adults do not know how to put into practice what we teach to students. That is to say non-hostile communication, acceptance of the other's point of view Our school is unknowingly reported to the numerous projects that we carry out for all users, foreign and Italian, starting with the Cambridge certifications. In our school community there is a serenity in the relationships between families of different origins, maybe we are a happy island that not everyone understands.

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