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News

Olympian Accuses NJ Teacher Of Pulling Hijab From 7-Year-Old Student's Head

Ibtihaj Muhammad is helping the Wyatt family tell their story.
Ibtihaj Muhammad is helping the Wyatt family tell their story. Photo Credit: Ibtihaj Muhammad Facebook

A North Jersey family is accusing their 7-year-old daughter's teacher of pulling her hijab from her head.

The Wyatts told ABC7 the incident happened at the Seth Boyden Elementary School in Maplewood.

The family's story took off when 2016 fencing Olympian Ibtihaj Muhammad shared the incident on social media, saying the teacher “forcibly removed the hijab of a second-grade student.”

Tamar Herman's attorney Samantha Harris told Daily Voice that the narrative on social media does not reflect the truth.

"Ms. Herman directed a student in her class to pull down the hood on a hooded sweatshirt because it was blocking her eyes – and immediately rescinded that request when she realized that the student was wearing the hood in place of, rather than on top of, her usual hijab," Harris said.

"The misinformation shared on social media has caused tremendous harm to Ms. Herman – a teacher who, after more than 30 years of devoting her heart and soul to children of all backgrounds, has now had to ask for police protection due to the threats she is receiving following the dissemination of false information on social media."

The South Orange Maplewood School District is investigating, and released the following statement:

"The district takes matters of discrimination extremely seriously. 

"We remain committed to diversity, equity, and inclusion throughout our schools, including providing anti-bias and anti-racism training for all educators in the district on a regular basis."

Local activists called for the teacher's termination.

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