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The Institute of Islamic Studies


MADRASSAH HANDBOOK

This handbook is being published with the intent of laying a basic foundation for a greater understanding among parents and learners so that we can function optimally and derive maximum benefit. By enumerating some expectations, we hope that it will forge and promote a critical Parent-Student-Teacher Partnership based on commitment, trust and a genuine desire to enlighten and see our children excel in their Islamic education. The policies, regulations and rules of the Institute mentioned in this handbook are designed and intended to promote and help the partnership maintain an Islamic environment that is conducive to learning and inculcating desirable etiquette

Vision and Mission of the Institute

Is conducive to learning and inculcating desirable etiquette. We constantly strive to develop a comprehensive vision for our learners that incorporate all relevant dimensions of their personal development and role in society. At the heart of the vision statement is the need to nurture “Conscientious, Practicing Muslims.” We acknowledge that the Institute, jointly with the parents and the community at large, has a critical role to play in this process, which is to invest in the foundational religious education of our children.

Our Mission

Is to equip the learner with core knowledge and analytical tools, the intended outcomes of which are:
(a) To develop a sense of identity with his/her beliefs and values to meet social Challenges more confidently.
(b) To provide the intellectual framework and controlled judgment to enable him/her to make considered and informed choices consistent with Islamic spiritual and moral norms.
(c) To provide the learner with an opportunity to be exposed to different views and to be able to engage those with different opinions.

The Role of the Institute / Madrasah

Madrasah is an Arabic word meaning school, or place of learning. It is a tradition that started very early on in Islam because of the special emphasis placed on acquiring knowledge. Our current institute evolved from the fine tradition that our forefathers started in our country and continued later on. The challenge is a more daunting one now in that the space, environment and values are not only at variance with our own, but also often promote enticing counter-culture values. While Islamic education should and, in most cases does begin at home, it is formally and systematically conducted through the Madrassah. Thus the Madrassah plays a major role in developing the Islamic identity of our children.

A LOOK AT THE MADRASSAH

The Tripartite Partnership

Apart from having a comprehensive, a practical and relevant curricula, along with good and caring teachers, engaging teaching methods, appropriate texts and notes, the fundamental factor in ensuring the success of any Madrassah is the Parent-Student-Teacher Partnership. Each party to this contract operates under some constraints. The parents may be too busy with their daily routines and/or less than fully equipped to bear the full responsibility of islamically molding their children on their own. The teachers have only limited time in the classroom to attend to this commitment to impart Islamic education. Students have an arduous task of reconciling different sets of values and behaviors they observe in the schools, homes, Islamic Centers or madaris. Thus, all the parties must work together, cooperatively, so that each helps to alleviate the constraints of the others. The success of the Madrassah in enhancing Islamic knowledge and identity of its students is highly dependent upon conveying our collective expectations (that is, of the parents and teachers) to the students with clarity, consistency, and in reinforcing behaviour through modeling both at home and at the Madrassah. It is very important to remember this. “A Muslim is not one who fights Satan with his sword and gets catapulted in jannah, but rather one who interacts actively with his environment in order to make a difference.” “Hisham al Talib”

1. Madrassah Time

The Madrassah is held every Saturday morning. The lessons begin on time at 10:00 a.m. Therefore, please make it possible for your child to be at the facility 10 minutes before lessons commence. A student distracts class when he or she comes to class late. Classes end at 12:30 p.m. sharp. Parents are kindly advised to make appropriate arrangements to ensure that transport arrangements had been made. Please be advised that pick up time is 12:20 a.m, therefore ensure that transport is available at these times.

2. Subjects taught

2.1 Quran:

The teaching of the Arabic alphabet, particularly the correct pronunciation (makharij) forms an essential component of the curricula. Foundational students, grade 1 and 2 are also encouraged to memorise a few short surahs along with some duas. The more senior grades are also taught ilm ul Tajweed and are required to read certain chapters of the Quran with reasonable fluency. The degree of fluency will largely depend upon the time spent with the Quran at home. It is at this level that the relationship of the learner and the Quran is fostered and nurtured most effectively. Apart from the proper reading of the Quran the senior classes are also expected to learn the meaning and memorise portions of the Quran. Each and every child should be able to read the Quran fluently. It is intended that the learner would have memorized a considerable portion of the Quran when he or she leaves our institute.

2.2 Fiqh:

The fiqh syllabus varies from grade to grade. For instance our grades one and two are introduced to basic fiqh terminology and concepts of cleanliness and salah. Their learning also include practical demonstrations of wudhu, and salah. The detail and depth gradually increases as the child proceeds to the next grade. Grade 9 onwards students are expected to learn arkan and shurut of ibadat i.e., of salat, zakah, saum and haj. It is not difficult to teach our youngsters the basics of these religious institutions. Studies at this stage are fairly comprehensive. A number of issues affecting the youth are also dealt with where students can engage the lecturer. Some of the topics included range from organ transplant, interfaith marriages, the internet, growing up in South Africa, Islamic teachings concerning parents and the elderly, HIV Aids and other relevant issues. For this purpose we will also invite various people to address our learners.

2.3 Arabic:

Learners are taught Arabic from grade 1 up to the final year of studies at the Institute. Grade ones are firstly familiarized with the Arabic alphabet, with emphasis on the proper makharij. As they progress they are equipped with a reasonable vocabulary and simple rules of grammar. It is hoped that the end result will enable the learner to conduct and understand a basic Arabic conversation. Various texts are used for this purpose with the Quran and hadith forming basic references.

Admissions

Admission to the Institute open to all Muslim girls and boys who are four years of age or older. The process of admissions is fairly simple and straightforward and basically involves filling out an enrollment form, and paying the appropriate fees. This will also be an opportunity for you to meet the teacher of your child/ren. We kindly urge parents to arrange for the fees to be paid on or before the 1st of each month. Please remember that as a Madrassah we function under considerable financial constraints. On the other hand our admission policy is extremely flexible. As part of a community outreach and development programme we have made the Institute accessible to all. Not only those who are financially challenged, but also require remedial attention. We have at our disposal specialists who work with those whose vision and hearing is slightly impaired. Being in its pilot stage I think we have been able to make considerable in roads. Those who wish to enroll their child/dren are required to read the Madrassah Handbook and sign the Agreement. Prospective students will then be assessed and placed in appropriate class.

The Administrator has the right to refuse admission to any applicant, but will explain to the parents the reasons for his/her decision.

The Administrator will have the ultimate authority of deciding the class in which the student should be placed.

He who pursues the pathway of justice would be in possession of the most fortified garden

- al Kindi