Friday, 4 May 2012

Mother accuses school of racism for sending her letter in Hindi ‘because she has an Asian name’

A woman has branded her daughter's school as racist after she was sent a letter in Hindi - despite the fact she speaks English.
Mother-of-three Raheela Ahmed insists the only reason she was sent the letter was because of her Asian name.
She said: 'I have been really offended. It is just insulting to send me a letter in another language.

English-speaking household: Raheela with her children Aysha, 8 (front), Jan, 13 (back left) and Amer, 10 (back right) speak English but were sent letter in Hindi
'I think it was in Hindi and they have just assumed because of my surname that I speak one of those languages.
'You are trying to be racist towards me - this is how I felt when I got the letter.'
A qualified classroom assistant, Mrs Ahmed of Seaton Burn, North Tyneside, has lived in England for 15 years.
The letter outlined times she could drop her daughter Aysha, eight, off at school as she had been dropped off too early.
She said: 'The only thing I could understand was the date, a time of 8.45am and my daughter's name.
'I've raised this with the head teacher not only for me but because of other Asian women.
'The headteacher is responsible for the correspondence that leaves the school and she shouldn't have done that.'
Foreign language: Mrs Ahmed could only understand her daughter's name and the time from the letter sent by Archibald First School, who have since apologised
Mrs Ahmed, a self-employed newsagent who works in Haltwhistle, Northumberland, with her husband Mohammed, added: 'We get all our letters sent out in English - I have never had anything sent to me other than in English because I understand it.'
'We are from a Pakistani background and we speak Punjabi but we don't speak it much with the children.'
Archibald First School in Gosforth, Newcastle, denied her claims of racism but did apologise for causing any offence.
Headteacher Julia Bayes, said: 'We would like to apologise again to Mrs Ahmed for the translation error in the note we sent her.
'We take communicating with all our parents very seriously, however, we accept that a mistake was made on this occasion.
'It was never our intention to cause Mrs Ahmed any offence and we will take greater care in future when communicating with all of our parents.'


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