Board Extends Saudi School's Lease

May 22, 2008

Author: Kirstin Downey

Source: Washington Post

The Fairfax County Board of Supervisors extended the lease of county-owned property to a private Islamic school funded by the Royal Embassy of Saudi Arabia.

The Islamic Saudi Academy on U.S. Route 1 in southern Fairfax County has attracted attention in the past year because of concerns that the school could have been using the same kinds of curriculum materials as Saudi Arabia, which critics say promote religious intolerance and violence against people of other faiths.

Supervisor Gerald W. Hyland (D-Mount Vernon), whose district includes the Saudi-backed school, said he reviewed the academy's materials with the help of an Arabic translator. After Hyland found no reason for serious concern, he and other board members agreed Monday to extend the lease of the school, which has about 1,000 students from pre-kindergarten through grade 12.