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Exams and Revision during Ramadan

The holy month of Ramadan is due to commence for our Muslim students from around Tuesday 15th May 2018 until Eid al-Fitr, around Thursday 14th June 2018.

This ties in with the national public examinations for Years 11, 12 and 13. If Eid al-Fitr does fall on Friday 15th June, the GCSE Physics exam is in the morning and we would expect all students to attend the exam. We are writing in advance of this date to give our Muslim families time to reflect with their daughter about how she will approach Ramadan whilst balancing her examinations and revision.

This letter is written to support and advise both parents and students about the considerations needed in observing fasting during Ramadan and the issues this may present to health and the pressures on our students for best performance in these examinations. In so doing, the information presented draws on the advice and guidance provided by national organisations who have tried to accommodate the wide and varied range of interpretations of Islamic practice and law and this letter does not intend to endorse any particular interpretation.

As always, it will be a decision for families, parents and individual students whether they are of an age to fast, for how long they will fast and if they are legitimately exempt from fasting. Equally, the degree of observance during Ramadan will necessarily be a decision for them.

If managed well, a student’s health should not be at risk during the month of Ramadan and can be of a health benefit, as described in the Department of Health guidance, Healthy Ramadan. If your daughter is feeling unwell at any time during Ramadan and she is at school, please ask her to let us know and we will contact you. Please make your daughter is aware of this. Please advise the school of any relevant medical advice given to your daughter in relation to any medical condition she may have. Please inform the school of any relevant outcome or if any medicine is to be administered in a different way during Ramadan. In our safeguarding duty, the school will apply judgement and common sense in “taking action to enable all children to have the best outcomes” as outlined in the Department for Education guidance, Keeping Children Safe in Education. We will inform you if your daughter is unwell whilst fasting during the examination period.

Students who do fast during Ramadan should ensure that they are well prepared, ready and understand the likely effects on their bodies during fasting and that they manage these challenges well, by:

  1. Eating well, with a balanced meal (containing all food groups) when breaking the fast at the evening meal (iftar) and during the pre-dawn meal (suhur) and drinking plenty of re-hydrating fluids between iftar and suhur
  2. Managing their sleep effectively
  3. Getting plenty of rest between examinations
  4. Avoiding over-exertion during the day, especially if the weather is particularly warm
  5. Planning ahead, in terms of organising their equipment and time, to avoid rushing around, and in terms of organising their revision processes, to fit around prayers and other Ramadan specific practices, such as the Tarawih prayer or I’tikaf, if these are likely to be performed

Staff are available to support students who experience any difficulties at this time. We know how hard students have been working and we hope that this is a happy and fulfilling time for all students who are observing Ramadan.

If there are any further queries or you would like to discuss further any aspects of this letter and advice, please do not hesitate to contact the school.