A non-Ramadan-observing child was denied water on the hottest day of the year because his teachers did not want to upset fellow students that couldn’t drink because of Ramadan. The boy’s mother has attacked the school for denying the 10-year-old water, claiming it was an abusive act that did not consider his needs. The boy told his mother he was denied water by his teachers that night when the family discussed Ramadan after seeing a report on the news.
At the Charles Dickens Primary School, where the story took place, several students are currently observing Ramadan. As the rules of Ramadan forbid followers from eating or drinking during the day, many of the children could not have water despite the summer heat. Usually, students are given water bottles to drink at their desks, but those bottles were removed for Ramadan. The boy specifically asked his teacher for a bottle, but was denied water. The boy was clearly dehydrated upon returning from school, and drank three glasses of water upon returning home.
The boy’s mother does not mind other students going without water for Ramadan, but feels it unfair that her non-observing son must face the same conditions. The mother has reached out to the school, the school board, and local police in an effort to investigate the incident.
Charles Dickens Primary School declined to comment, but it appears their reasons for denying water to the boy involved providing fairness to the other thirsty children in the class. If the boy were to be given water, it likely would have been seen by other students that were also hot, but could not drink.
This is a difficult situation that has already caused an internet firestorm. Some commenters think the school was in the right denying water to the boy, while others see the act as abusive. What do you think?