Latest educational information related to children
latest educational information related to children
UAE Education System
Public education is free for citizens up to university level and compulsory for students aged 6–12. Non-UAE nationals may attend government schools as fee-paying students. Government schools, including universities, are gender-segregated, but there are some co-educational private institutions.
The UAE formal school education system was established in the 1970s. More recently, reforms have been influenced by foreign English language education systems, and the upgrading of English language skills and use of computer technology are government priorities, as the traditional school education in the UAE had been based on Arabic and Islamic culture and teacher-centred learning methods.
Language of Instruction
The language of instruction in Government schools is Arabic, with English used for some science and technical subjects.
Improving English language skills at all levels of education is a government priority under the ‘Education 2020’ plan, and a new English language syllabus is in the process of being introduced to all government schools.
English is the primary language of instruction at the United Arab Emirates University, Zayed University and the Higher Colleges of Technology but students are expected to be fluent in both Arabic and English.
The school year runs from September to June, with a break from the middle of June to the end of August.
All government schools, government universities and government colleges have adopted an academic calendar, which has two yearly breaks, in mid-December and end of March.
Administration and Finance
The Ministry of Education is responsible for all levels of government schooling, as well as supervision of the private sector. Private schools at all levels must be licensed by the Ministry and their programmes accredited. They must also offer core programmes such as Islamic education, social studies and Arabic language.
About 25% of total government expenditure is directed towards education. There is also a large network of private schools operating at all levels on a fee-paying basis
PRIMARY AND SECONDARY EDUCATION
Education at primary and secondary level is universal and compulsory up to ninth grade. This takes place in a four-tier process over 14 years: 4 to 5 year-olds attend kindergarten, 6 to 11 year-olds attend primary schools, the preparatory stage caters for children aged between 12 to 14 years, and 15 to 17 year-olds attend secondary schools. The emiratisation of teaching staff in government schools is scheduled to reach 90 per cent by 2020, in order to ensure that the Islamic principles and traditions of the UAE are maintained.
Over 40 per cent of pupils attend private schools. Some of these offer foreign language education geared towards expatriate communities, usually preserving the culture and following the curriculum of the students’ countries of origin.
Technical Secondary School
Primary school education is compulsory for all UAE citizens. Government policy is to provide staff/student ratios of 1:20 at kindergarten and primary levels; and 1:15 at intermediate and secondary levels. The existing staff/student ratios are well within this proposed range.
The Secondary cycle focuses on preparing students for University, technical or vocation training, or for the joining the workforce directly. Most students in the UAE tend to pursue higher education at universities rather than at technical or vocational institutes.
Secondary education lasts for three years. It consists of a common first year followed by specialization in Science or Arts. At the end of the twelfth year, students take the examination for the Shahadat Al-Thanawiya Al-Amma (Secondary School Leaving Certificate). Technical secondary education offers both preparatory and secondary cycles. The preparatory cycle offers an Engineering course for the acquisition of basic skills leading to the Intermediate Certificate. At the end of the secondary cycle, a Technical Secondary Diploma is awarded.
National Admissions and Placement Office (NAPO): co-ordinates admissions to public higher education institutions.
The Common Educational Proficiency Assessment (CEPA) is a joint venture between three higher education institutions in the United Arab Emirates. The three higher education institutions are the United Arab Emirates University (UAEU), Higher Colleges of Technology (HCT) and Zayed University (ZU).
These institutions are supervised by the National Admissions and Placement Office (NAPO) in the Ministry of Education – Higher Education to deliver this test throughout the UAE for all 12 year grade students seeking higher education in the UAE.
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