TERRE HAUTE, Ind. (WTHI) - A Vigo County mom, whose 3rd grader attends Dixie Bee Elementary School in Terre Haute, is defending the school amid claims that security was compromised last Friday when a Muslim family was allowed in and passed religious literature, classroom to classroom, while school was in session.
"The school is very safe! I feel safe taking my kids to school," said Stacy Mullins, who also volunteers in her son's classroom several mornings a week.
"If I felt there was any problem, I definitely would not send my kids to school!"
Mullins also takes issue with several allegations stemming from the Friday morning incident: first and foremost, the claim that the Muslim family – whose three daughters are students at Dixie Bee – was allowed to wander the halls, virtually undetected by teachers and staffers.
"You cannot roam the halls in that building without – obviously, (school staffers) know you, because you've signed in," Mullins explained. "So, if you're walking through the halls, they know you are there!"
Mullins described a very thorough security process already in place at the school; protocol that has failed to let even Mullins herself get by without careful registration with the secretaries in the school's front office.
On Monday, the Vigo County School Corporation announced the incident at Dixie Bee had launched an internal investigation to find out who "dropped the ball," in the words of Superintendent Danny Tanoos.
Tanoos also presented a document from the corporation's legal counsel in Indianapolis, advising the corporation to allow the Muslim family into the school or face the potential of "viewpoint discrimination" claims.
Despite the corporation's willingness to admit the family's prospective visit was approved, even OK'd by legal, the agreement was that the visitors would merely leave religious materials, and a single tulip, for teachers at the school's front office. Ray Azar, the director of student services, told reporters on Monday that the family was never supposed to venture beyond the office.
Parent Stacy Mullins claims the school corporation got some very bad advice.
"I would say the attorney made the bad decision by saying, ‘Hey – Let it go,'" Mullins shared.
"I feel they should not have been in the building with their Biblical literature," she added.
The small flier passed to most all Dixie Bee teachers that fateful morning reads, "Mohammed is a Prophet of Mercy. Do not defame people lest you make them your enemies."
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