Pupils prepare for prayer

FIRST class footbaths have been installed at a Sheffield primary school for Muslim pupils wanting to wash their feet before prayer sessions.

Springfield Primary at Broomhall is believed to be the first school in the city to install such facilities, which are now used each day by up to 50 children.

The baths were installed in the pupils' toilet areas by local building maintenance company NRC Services Ltd, and were especially popular during Ramadan.

Headteacher Beth Stevenson said: "The school has always worked closely with parents and has listened to their needs and requests.

"A number of children pray at dinner times especially during Ramadan, and for their prayers to be meaningful they need to wash beforehand.

Beth said: "To let them do this we introduced a programme of building work that includes fitting foot washing facilities for all our Key Stage 2 children.

"We believe we are one of the first primary schools in Sheffield to do this.

"Myself and our premises manager Paul Milnes have worked closely with NRC Services and their project managers John Cartledge and Lee Montgomery, to ensure we have high-quality work done.

"The children have been respectful of the introduction of the foot washing and it has been warmly received by parents."

Parent Amina Ali, mum of pupil Abdiemalik, said she was grateful to Mrs Stevenson for respecting Muslim traditions.

She said: "I was happy when I heard about the foot washing and I am still happy. The school is supportive of all the children."

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