The French Education Ministry sent out an 83-page circular reiterating a 2004 ban against wearing religious symbols in public schools. Forbidden items include yarmulkes, Muslim head covers for girls, large cross pendants and long skirts worn for religious reasons.
It also calls for disciplinary action against students who refuse to partake in immodest activities like mixed swimming lessons. The primarily purpose of the law was to “check the spread of extremist viewpoints,” the circular said.
Meyer Habib, a lawmaker in the lower house of the French parliament and former vice president of the CRIF umbrella organization of French Jews, urged selective enforcement of the school regulations, telling Ynet, “Jewish symbols must not be treated the same as characteristics of radical Islam.”
Almost all France’s religious Jewish children attend private schools.