Judge: NYC Wronged Arabic-Language Principal

March 17, 2010

The Equal Employment Opportunity Commission has ruled that the New York City Education Department discriminated against the founding principal of an Arabic-language school who lost her job after she made controversial remarks about the word “intifada.”

Debbie Almontaser’s supporters released a copy of the ruling on Friday. In it, the EEOC says the Education Department “succumbed to the very bias that creation of the school was intended to dispel.”

Representatives for the Education Department did not immediately return a call seeking comment. The agency had argued that Almontaser’s handling of the media showed she lacked judgment.

Almontaser wants more than $300,000 in compensation for court costs, lost wages and pain and suffering. She also wants to be reinstated to her old job. The EEOC has asked both parties to negotiate a settlement.

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