The Minnesota chapter of the Council on American Islamic Relations (CAIR) filed the complaints in March, saying Somali and Muslim students were harassed about their race and religion.
These included name-calling, vulgar language, derisive comments about Muslim traditions and obscene gestures, threats on Facebook and the refusal of a school bus driver in St. Cloud to pick up Muslim students at bus stops.
Taneeza Islam, civil rights director for CAIR, a Muslim advocacy organization, said the organization is pleased that a neutral body will look into its complaints.
Meanwhile, a St. Cloud Baptist minister is defending himself against charges of racism after he placed an ad in a newspaper claiming that “when Muslims take over a nation they will destroy the constitution, force Islam on society, take freedom of religion away, and persecute all other religions.”
In a radio interview, the Rev. Dennis Campbell of Granite City Baptist Church insisted he was not racist and his ad was misjudged. Other religious leaders condemned the ad as fear mongering, shocking and untrue.