Home > Public space > Germany > 2002-01-17 - High Administrative Court of Münster, n. 19 B 99/02

2002-01-17 - High Administrative Court of Münster, n. 19 B 99/02

Public space · Germany · Religious practices · School

A Muslim girl’s fear not to be able to follow all Muslim rites during a school trip can have a pathological effect and the girl can therefore be exempt because of illness

Key facts of the case - The girl did not want to go on a school trip in tenth grade. She had an expertise from her Muslim community which stated that she could not participate without a mahram (a close male relative) joining her. The school accepted this expertise and decided that she had to go on the school trip together with her brother. Yet, the brother refused to join her.
She then claimed that she could by no means go on the school trip because she was terrified that she might break a Muslim rule by going without a mahram. Further she feared that there might be pork in her meals, that she could not make her prayers or do her ritual washings properly, that she might lose her headscarf or that others might see her undressed.

Main reasoning of the court - The Court found that these fears and compulsions that the girl is exposed to, have a pathological character that is comparable to a psychic disability. Therefore the girl does not need a specific permission to stay at home from the school trip. She could rather stay at home because of illness.