"There is no god but Allah. Muhammad is the messenger of Allah."

Responses to that message, a short Muslim creed known as the Shahada or "Testimony," have shuttered an entire school district in Virginia's Shenandoah Valley region this Friday.

It all started in a Riverheads High School geography class last Friday. Teacher Cheryl LaPorte was educating her students about the development of calligraphy. She had them practice by copying out the Shahada from Arabic. When parents found out about it, outrage followed.

And no wonder. As the Staunton, Va.,-based News Leader pointed out, "Recitation of the shahada is a fundamental step in conversion to Islam."

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