London: Banning the Islamic headscarf in French schools has helped Muslim girls get better grades, as well as increasing the likelihood of them marrying someone outside their religion, a study from the country has found, Daily reported. Mail.
A law introduced in 2004 banned veils altogether in French schools, but they were first told to ban “ostentatious religious signs” in a 1994 government circular – or notice.
The ban was met with strong opposition from religious leaders, who warned the law would persecute Muslims and lead to fundamentalism, with some saying it went against the French constitution.
However, a study in France comparing Muslim women born between 1971 and 1974 (and therefore having completed their studies before the 1994 circular) with those born between 1987 and 1990 found that the law may have had positive effects.
The results showed that the 1971 to 1974 group had about a 13% chance of graduating from high school compared to their non-Muslim peers.
For the group of Muslim girls from 1987 to 1990 – who would have attended school with some form of veil ban in place – the gap narrowed to just 7%.
Study co-author Professor Eric Maurin told the Daily Telegraph: “For female students who wore the veil, the ban may have had a negative effect on those most attached to it, as it could cause them to drop out. from school.
“But the ban may also have had a positive effect on students who were forced to wear headscarves and on students who suffer stigma and discrimination at school because of it.”
The findings of Maurin – who works at the Paris School of Economics – and his team were presented at France’s 75th annual policy meeting in early April.
Speaking to the newspaper, he added that the study demonstrated a “significant increase in educational attainment” among the group of Muslim women “who attended college and reached puberty” after the 1994 ban, a reported the Daily Mail.