H.H. Sheikh Abdullah bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Minister of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation, Chairman of the Education and Human Resources Council (EHRC) last week chaired two virtual meetings of the EHRC.
“The UAE is bent on bringing significant qualitative improvement in the education system, out of a keen educational vision based on firmly established values derived from the teachings of late Sheikh Zayed bin Sultan Al Nahayan and the support of the UAE’s wise leadership,” said H.H. Sheikh Abdullah in his inaugural remarks of the council’s meetings.
“This applies to both conventional and distance education. A set of criteria is being developed to be added to the current ones to evaluate the distance learning model now adopted by schools across the country,” he added, explaining that the new criteria are premised to “enabling all partners in the education field to best utilise the current environment and come up with sustainable resources to support our students and empower our teaching staff to diversify instructional methods for more engaging.”
He added that the UAE will continue to confront the besetting challenges with “a future-oriented vision that sees challenges as opportunities that should be utilised in the best possible way.”
Addressing the meeting, Noura bint Mohammed Al Kaabi, Minister of Culture and Knowledge Development, President of Zayed University, reviewed the prospects of collaboration between Zayed University and the Department of Education and Knowledge to provide higher education students with the chance to help school pupils who find it difficult to benefit from the current remote education model, especially in those subjects like science, technology, English language and mathematics.
For her part, Jameela Al Muheiri, Minister of State for Public Education, highlighted the assessment criteria for remote education and methods adopted to follow up schools’ performance and their ability to apply distance learning plans.
“These criteria are based on three main tenets focused on the processes of education, learning and positive discipline parenting and classroom management models to assist schools in managing the remote education process in a way that ensures students get equitable and relevant education opportunities” the minister explained.
These criteria will be applied to all government and private schools in the country, she added, referring to a comprehensive transformational plan to carry out a number of educational programmes and activities remotely.
“These programmes address five main fields: arts & culture; linguistics; health & sports; STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Math) and essential life skills,” she explained, noting that these programmes will target all students across different stages starting from preschool or kindergarten.
She highlighted in this regard a number of initiatives, covering national clubs, AI competitions, volunteering and the “Be Pro” scheme.
For her part, Sara Awad Issa Musallam, Chairperson of the Department of Education and Knowledge referred to the survey conducted recently by the Department, which, she said, reflected a call by the participating parents for launching more communication channels between schools and their students and their parents to ensure efficient participation in the remote education process.
She stressed that tablets and Web-enabled devices have been provided to large segments of students who find difficulties in responding to the remote learning process.
Attending the meeting were Sultan bin Saeed Al Mansouri, Minister of Economy, Hussain bin Ibrahim Al Hammadi, Minister of Education, Noura bint Mohammed Al Kaabi, Minister of Culture and Knowledge Development, Nasser bin Thani Al Hamli, Minister of Human Resources and Emiratisation, Hessa Essa Buhumaid, Minister of Community Development, Jameela Al Muheiri, Minister of State for Public Education, Dr. Ahmad bin Abdullah Humaid Belhoul Al Falasi, Minister of State for Higher Education and Advanced Skills, Shamma bint Suhail Faris Al Mazrui, Minister of State for Youth Affairs, Sarah bint Yousif Al Amiri, Minister of State for Advanced Sciences, Jassim Mohammed Buatabh Al Zaabi, Member of the Executive Council, Chairman of the Department of Finance, Saeed Ahmed Ghobash, Chancellor of the United Arab Emirates University, Sara Awad Issa Musallam, Chairperson of the Department of Education and Knowledge, Dr. Abdulla Al Karam, Director General of Dubai Knowledge and Human Development Authority, Dr. Muhadditha Al Hashimi, Chairperson of the Sharjah Private Education Authority (SPEA) and Mohamed Khalifa Al Nuaimi, Director of the Education Affairs Office at the Crown Prince Court of Abu Dhabi.