23 New Jersey school districts to have holiday for Diwali

Welcoming 23 New Jersey public school districts closing schools on Diwali this year, Hindus urge all public school districts and private-charter-independent schools in the state to close on their most popular festival Diwali.

Hindu statesman Rajan Zed, in a statement in Nevada said that it was simply not fair with Hindu pupils of most of the New Jersey schools, as they had to be at school on their most popular festival while there were holidays to commemorate festivals of other religions.

Diwali falls on October 24 this year; and 2022-2023 calendars of Bernards Township, Bridgewater-Raritan Regional, Central Bucks, Cherry Hill, Clifton, East Brunswick, Edison Township, Fair Lawn, Glen Rock, Hillsborough Township, Hopewell Valley Regional, Livingston, Marlboro Township, Millburn Township, Monroe Township, Montgomery Township, Paramus, Parsippany-Troy Hills Township, Piscataway Township,  Robbinsville, Sayreville, South Brunswick, West Windsor-Plainsboro Regional School-Districts/Public-Schools/Schools; show their schools closed for students on October 24. Moreover Colts Neck Township Schools, Englewood Cliffs Public Schools, West Long Branch School District are offering ‘Short Session Day’, ‘single session’, ‘Early Dismissal’ respectively on October 24.

Zed, who is President of the Universal Society of Hinduism, stated that the holiday of Diwali in New Jersey schools would be a step in the positive direction in view of the presence of a substantial number of Hindu students at schools around the state, as it was important to meet the religious and spiritual needs of Hindu pupils. 

Rajan Zed suggested that all New Jersey schools, public-private-charter-independent to seriously look into declaring Diwali as an official holiday thus recognizing the intersection of spirituality and education. Zed noted that awareness about ‘other’ religions thus created by such holidays like Diwali would make New Jersey students well-nurtured, well-balanced, and enlightened citizens of tomorrow.

 Zed urged New Jersey Governor Philip D. Murphy, New Jersey Acting Education Commissioner Dr. Angelica Allen-McMillan and New Jersey State Board of Education President Kathy Goldenberg to work towards adding Diwali as an official holiday in all the state’s public schools, and persuade the private-charter-independent schools to follow. Zed also thanked the Boards of Education of school districts, which closed schools for students on Diwali, for understanding the concerns of Hindu community.


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