(RNS) — Instead of fully enjoying celebrations for Eid al-Fitr, the festival that marks the end of Ramadan, Aisha Majdoub has often found herself preoccupied, wondering what her classmates were doing or thinking about missed schoolwork as she tried to commemorate the holiday with family.“If you miss math for one day, it’s pretty tough to get back on track,” said Majdoub, 15, a sophomore at Galileo Academy of Science and Technology, a public high school in San Francisco.
Her parents have also felt guilty, she said, “like (they) were depriving me of a day of education.”
During Eid al-Fitr, which means “the feast of breaking the fast,” there are two to three days of celebrations with special morning prayers and sweet homemade dishes. Gifts are given to children and to those in need. Muslims are encouraged to forgive and seek forgiveness.
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“I’ve always wondered to myself, why is it not a (recognized) holiday?” she said.
Now, Majdoub is among students and organizers in the Bay Area who are pushing the San Francisco Board of Education — which earlier this month agreed to shift next year’s spring break to accommodate Eid celebrations — to close in observance of the Islamic holiday.
Each year, Muslims celebrate two Eids, with Eid al-Fitr happening earlier in the year and Eid al-Adha later. Eid dates change from year to year because the observance and celebration of the holidays are based on the Islamic calendar, which is a …