As my hometown, Culver City is a critical part of my identity. Culver City High School, located within the nation’s fourth most diverse school district, has a variety of distinct communities that have influenced me over the years and impacted me in a powerful way. As a Muslim Indian woman being blended into this melting point, I am built up of every single unique person I have met. I integrate my friends’ cultural backgrounds and customs into mine, build upon myself from their traits and beliefs, and fuse their life stories into my own story, connecting various pieces into a whole.
With every school day I attend, I watch as my school continues to thrive on a foundation that is built on not only toleration of differences, but acceptance of them as well. I listen to hellos and goodbyes being exchanged in different languages among classmates in the hall. I watch as African Americans, Hispanics, Whites, and Asians sit together and develop strong friendships with one another. Because of this powerful magnitude of understanding and compassion within CCHS, it was no surprise when my peers of different races and religions stood up for me and discussed the possibility of protesting the 2018 Prom date as it conflicted with my Muslim holy month of Ramadan.
During Ramadan, Muslims like myself begin their day of fasting at sunrise and wait until sunset to break their fast. As a result, many of us Muslim students on campus felt that we wouldn’t be unable to attend the 2018 Prom because the timings would conflict with our fasting and praying schedule. When informed about this issue, Assistant Principal Ms.Tarvyd contacted the local mosque and Culver City High School’s Muslim Student Association to resolve the situation. After much discussion and careful consideration, it was decided that the Muslim students who decide to attend Prom will be provided with date palms (a fruit used to traditionally break one’s fast) and water at the time of sunset to adequately break their fast. The 2018 Prom will continue to be held on Saturday, May 19th. The actions taken by my peers and the faculty serve to demonstrate the high regard for unity on the CCHS campus. As a Muslim Indian woman, I am grateful to walk on the grounds of a tight-knit community woven by threads of solidarity and acceptance.