10 practical tips to support students taking exams during Ramadan
The month-long period of Islamic prayer, fasting, self-control and goodwill to others is predicted to start on the evening of Sunday 5 May, depending on sight of the moon, and will end on Tuesday 4 June. This year, Ramadan will coincide with the test and exam season, which is a pattern likely to continue for the next couple of years.
If you have been delegated with the task of ensuring your school has appropriate arrangements in place for Ramadan, there is a significant responsibility to balance your school’s statutory safeguarding duty with its wider moral obligations.
Here are ten practical tips for how you as a school leader can support your students undertaking tests during Ramadan:
- Inform fasting pupils of the allowances Islam gives them for breaking their fast – making it up later if fasting jeopardises their performance
- Provide a supervised quiet space with activities for fasting pupils, especially during the lunch period
- Check room temperatures to ensure they are no higher or lower than they need to be
- Check whether revision lessons would be best held in the mornings or afternoons
- Note that those fasting pupils on free school meals are still entitled to a meal; schools should consider putting a bag together for fasting pupils to take home
- Make allowances for fasting pupils who may need to reduce their overall levels of physical activity, say during PE lessons, so schools should consider alternative activities on such occasions
- Schools may want to consider the impact of Ramadan on the setting of dates for other school activities such as sports days, trips and end-of-year celebrations
- Staff should only intervene to provide care for a pupil where they have a genuine belief that there is a risk to a pupil’s health, welfare or safety
- Good examination room management will benefit all pupils – ensure rooms are shaded, well-ventilated and that all pupils have access to water
- Consider providing an additional room or space where fasting pupils can rest between exams.
For more information and advice around pupil support, click here for our dedicated pupils and curriculum section.