Paris denies French school is teaching sharia law in Qatar
Qatar's Attorney General Ali bin Mohsen al-Marri (L) shakes hands with the director of the Agency for French Teaching Abroad (AEFE) Helene Farnaud-Defromont on Jan 28, 2014. AFP PhotoA recent agreement between the Lycée Voltaire in Doha and French authorities does not involve changes to religion classes or dividing classes by sex, Paris said after reports of the accord sparked outrage in France.
Under French law, state-run schools are barred from providing religious education. However, the state does subsidise private schools, like Doha’s, provided they follow the French state curriculum, do not force religious teaching upon students, and do not discriminate according to religion or sex.
“By signing the accord, the [Doha] school has committed itself to respecting the “Charter of French Teaching Abroad”, which outline the principles of secularism and religious neutrality in education,” the Foreign Ministry said on its website.
“The school, which goes from kindergarten to sixth grade, is mixed-sex. All of its classes include both boys and girls, in accordance with the spirit and practices of French education,” it added.
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