29-year-old Brazilian Muslim law student, Charlyane Souza, attempted to take the Bar exam while wearing a headbag, which is against the rules. Head coverings are not allowed during the test as takers could deploy the use of a Bluetooth device or other methods of cheating.
TPNNAfter being frisked outside the testing room before she started the exam, Souza was pulled out of the exam and into a room for questioning by a female official. According to the Organization of Brazilian Lawyers (OAB), exam takers are not allowed to have their heads covered due to fears that they might use Bluetooth earpieces and have someone help them cheat.
The official asked why Souza had her head covered and did not believe Souza when she said she was Muslim.
“She asked me if I really was Muslim, and if I had a way of proving it, because I could be just disguising myself as one,” Souza told Arab News.
The official allowed Souza to return to the exam, but she was later interrupted by the president of the OAB’s examination commission, Rubens Tilkian, who had been called into the exam room to handle the situation. Tilkian asked Souza if she would be uncomfortable taking off her hijab for the remainder of the exam and alleged that other exam-takers were feeling “uncomfortable.”
Souza refused and, as a result, she was taken to a private room to finish the exam, but she failed it after answering only 31 of the 80 questions correctly, when she needed to answer at least 40 questions right to pass the first phase of the exam.
She claims that test administrators wasted about 60 minutes of her time and that she was why she failed. What she doesn’t explain is how long she was given total to complete the exam and how many questions she did answer, but did so incorrectly – important aspects of the incident that were conveniently left out.