Question # 495: The management of the school wherein I work as a teacher instructs the teachers to give free marks to the students in exams so that none of them fails. But the students who pass or score a relatively good mark are not given such free marks. Is it permissible for me to obey the management in this regard?
bismi-llahi r-raḥmani r-raḥīm,
Assalamu ‘laikum warahmatullahi wabarakatuh,
All praise and thanks are due to Allah (سبحانه و تعالى), and peace and blessings be upon His Messenger (صلى الله عليه و سلم).
First of all, we implore Allah (سبحانه و تعالى) to help us serve His cause and render our work for His sake.
Shorter Answer: It is not permissible to grade certain students, higher than what they have not earned or they do not deserve. Nevertheless, the teacher should perform his/her duty with honesty and treat all students fairly in which case, students who have already passed or scored better grades should also be provided the same extra grades as the failing students, given the circumstances.
Long Answer: Justice means giving each person his rights and putting everything in its proper place. What justice can there be in that, when Allah (سبحانه و تعالى) says in the Qur’an: “Verily, Allah enjoins Al-Adl (i.e., justice and worshipping none but Allah Alone – Islamic Monotheism) and Al-Ihsan (i.e., to be patient in performing your duties to Allah, totally for Allah’s sake and in accordance with the Sunnah of the Prophet (صلى الله عليه و سلم) in a perfect manner), and giving (help) to kith and kin (i.e. all that Allah has ordered you to give them e.g., wealth, visiting, looking after them, or any other kind of help, etc.): and forbids Al-Fahsha (i.e., all evil deeds, e.g. illegal sexual acts, disobedience of parents, polytheism, to tell lies, to give false witness, to kill a life without right, etc.), and Al-Munkar (i.e., all that is prohibited by Islamic law: polytheism of every kind, disbelief and every kind of evil deeds, etc.), and Al-Baghy (i.e., all kinds of oppression), He admonishes you, that you may take heed.” (Soorah an-Nahl 16:90)
The Prophet (صلى الله عليه و سلم) said in a hadith qudsi that Allah (سبحانه و تعالى) said: “O My slaves, I have forbidden zulm (injustice, wrongdoing, unfairness) to Myself and I have made it haraam among you, so do not wrong one another.” (Narrated by Muslim)
To answer the question, it is not permissible to grade certain students, higher than what they have not earned or they do not deserve; however, considering the COVID situation worldwide, many school managements have taken this step to promote all students to the next level irrespective of their grades. Nevertheless, the teacher should perform his/her duty with honesty and treat all students fairly. Fairness here means that other students in the same class/students, who have already passed or scored better grades are also provided the same benefit or opportunity.
One’s keenness on being honest at work may be one of the best means to call to Islam and support Muslims. May Allah (سبحانه و تعالى) guide all of us to all that is good and help fulfill the trust that we bear.
(The above reply is based on various answers on similar topics provided by:
- Islamqa.info; and
- Islamweb.net, a web site belonging to the Ministry of Awqaf and Islamic Affairs in the State of Qatar)
Allahu A’lam (Allah (سبحانه و تعالى) knows best) and all Perfections belong to Allah, and all mistakes belong to me alone. May Allah (سبحانه و تعالى) forgive me, Ameen.