Ramadan 2023: UAE announces reduced hours for schools, federal employees
The UAE government has announced reduced school timings and working hours for federal employees during the holy month of Ramadan in 2023.
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Reduced school hours
During Ramadan, private school timings will be reduced to five hours, according to the Knowledge and Human Development Authority (KHDA).
Schools have been given two options: those starting at 7:45 AM will end at 12:45 PM from Monday to Thursday and 7:45 AM to 11:45 AM on Friday, while institutions starting at 8:00 AM will end at 1:00 PM from Monday to Thursday and at 11:45 AM on Fridays.
The KHDA emphasized that schools must provide a maximum of five hours of instruction time and end instruction by 12:00 PM on Fridays to accommodate Friday prayers.
Fasting students are also exempt from participating in PE classes.
Official working hours for federal employees
The Federal Authority for Government Human Resources (FAHR) has issued a circular setting the official working hours based on a related UAE Cabinet resolution.
The official working hours for ministries and federal authorities during Ramadan will be from 9:00 AM to 2:30 PM from Monday to Thursday, and from 9:00 AM to 12:00 PM on Fridays.
This schedule will allow employees to observe their religious practices during the holy month. FAHR has also emphasized that ministries and federal authorities could implement flexible working or remote work schedules during Ramadan in line with their specific requirements.
Ramadan is the ninth month of the Islamic calendar and is observed by Muslims worldwide as a month of fasting, prayer, reflection, and community. Muslims abstain from food and drink from sunrise until sunset during this month.
The sighting of the new moon marks the beginning of Ramadan, which usually lasts for 29 or 30 days. The exact start date of the holy month this year will depend on the sighting of the moon and is expected to begin on March 22 or 23.
In addition to reduced working hours, the UAE government also makes arrangements for iftar, the meal that breaks the fast, for workers who cannot go home.
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