Arkan Toledo has been set up primarily for the purpose of delivering Islamic Special Religious Instruction (SRI) in Victorian state schools. It does so by managing the program, and by recruiting volunteer instructors to provide SRI on a weekly basis at schools across Melbourne and the rest of the state.
The name Arkan Toledo literally means the pillars or foundations of Toledo. After the time of Muslim Spain, Toledo was a city that drew scholars from all over the world, Muslim, Christian, and Jew, working side by side to translate scientific and other academic works from Arabic into Latin. The Arabic works were either original or were themselves translations and enhancements of ancient Greek, Persian, Indian, Chinese works. The libraries of Toledo were unparalleled houses of knowledge, and gave Europe the inspiration, the means, and the impetus for the Renaissance.
Through the work of Arkan Toledo, we hope to inspire the youngest generation through knowledge, and help shape a more harmonious future for all today's children by fostering better understanding between all faith communities.
Definition & Background
Special Religious Instruction (SRI) refers to instructing religious beliefs and practices to state school students by religious groups. SRI is authorised by section 2.2.11 of the Education and Reform Act 2006. The Act specifically allows for the provision of SRI at Victorian state schools.
The likelihood is that your local state school does offer SRI, but it won't be Islamic SRI. Very few state schools offer Islamic SRI classes, but Arkan Toledo is committed to providing as many Muslim students as possible with the opportunity to receive Islamic special religious instruction.