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Jakarta Post

No religious dress code in public schools, ministerial decree states

  • Nina A. Loasana

    The Jakarta Post

Jakarta   /   Thu, February 4, 2021   /  09:28 pm
The Jakarta Post Image
Students attend class at state elementary school SD 6 Lapai in Padang, West Sumatra, on Jan. 4.(Antara/Iggoy el Fitra)

The government has issued a joint ministerial decree (SKB) banning public schools from prescribing religious attire following controversy over a public school in Padang, West Sumatra, that had made hijabs mandatory for all female students. The regulation comes as a relief for educators across the archipelago who hope it will be a step toward ending religious intolerance and discrimination within the country’s educational institutions. The joint decree, signed by Home Minister Tito Karnavian, Religious Affairs Minister Yaqut Cholil Qoumas and Education and Culture Minister Nadiem Makarim, lets public school students decide for themselves whether to wear religious attire or not. “The key point […] is that the right to wear religious attire is the freedom of each individual and shouldn’t be enforced by the school,” Nadiem said on Wednesday. “The...