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 More than half a million stakeholders invited to voice suggestions and concerns

In efforts to shape the future of its youth and as part of the nation’s aspiration to offer students some of the best education, the Abu Dhabi Education Council (ADEC) has invited more than half a million stakeholders to voice their suggestions and concerns regarding the type of education offered across the Emirate of Abu Dhabi.

The stakeholders targeted include school leaders, teachers, administrative staff, parents and students from both public and private schools, ADEC employees, faculty and students from higher education institutes, as well as public and private organisations across the Emirate.

His Excellency, Dr. Yousif Al Sheryani, Advisor and Executive Director at ADEC’s Office of Planning and Strategic Affairs.
His Excellency, Dr. Yousif Al Sheryani, Advisor and Executive Director at ADEC’s Office of Planning and Strategic Affairs.

His Excellency, Dr. Yousif Al Sheryani, Advisor and Executive Director at ADEC’s Office of Planning and Strategic Affairs, stressed on the importance of involving stakeholders in ADEC’s strategic plan, which will help shape the future of students and the type of education that best fits and suits everyone.

“The survey launched personally by ADEC’s Director General since Sunday, has so far witnessed huge enthusiasm and high participation, especially amongst students and parents. Each year, ADEC alongside its partners and stakeholders needs to collaborate and think about some of the best ways to continue to elevate the quality of education offered to students. Discussing challenges openly and in a constructive manner will not only result in a strong partnership in favour of our students, but will also offer positive solutions to help revamp areas that need change.”

Dr. Arif
Dr. Arif Sultan Al Hammadi, Executive Vice President of Khalifa University.

Dr. Arif Sultan Al Hammadi, Executive Vice President of Khalifa University, commented on the higher education survey tailor made for university faculty members. “We congratulate ADEC for taking this important step which is in the best interest for the education sector. Taking the opinion and feedback of academics is pivotal in order to take informed decisions, which will directly benefit the education system in general.”

Dr. Al Hammadi added: “Moreover, gathering different suggestions from students and parents is very important as it provides decision makers with relevant data to be analysed in order to develop strategies that are in the best interest of students. Additionally, we value that the survey covered the strategic partnerships and employees working in all areas of the education sector.”

Dr. Ashraf Khalil, Director of Research in Abu Dhabi University lauded ADEC’s initiative in involving different stakeholders in their outreach program. “I appreciate the fact that ADEC is not only focusing on school students, they are also interested in hearing opinions of faculty and university students, industry leaders as well as parents, which is a great step towards ensuring impactful feedback – a core requirement for any strategic plan to succeed.”

Sara Younis Mohamed Al Shamsi, a student at Khalifa University was delighted to fill out the survey the minute she received the link. “It’s great to know that I can freely voice my suggestions and concerns. Involving students is a very important step that may result in the council looking at things from a student’s perspective.”

Majid Al
Majid Al Mail, Head of Innovator Programme.

Majid Al Mail, Head of the Innovator Programme described the survey as fast paced and progressive as well as an optimistic step forward that will add value to the education sector. “Sending such surveys to different stakeholders will generate a meaningful insight as well as build personal relationships with people, especially if there will be follow up visits or personal discussions following this survey.”

Grade 10 public school student, Sara Al Ameri, has filled out ADEC related surveys prior to this one, however felt this particular survey was different. “I like the fact that His Excellency is addressing us personally, and is interested in hearing our suggestions; it makes us feel like we’re ADEC’s partners now and gives us responsibility to express what’s in the best interest of our education system.”

Mariam Eyad, a 15-year-old public school student, hopes that ADEC will be sending similar surveys more frequently. “We have a lot of suggestions and great ideas that we can offer ADEC. We would love to enhance the communication between us further in order to reach out to them, and have them reach out to us. Education has improved a lot, and we feel there’s way more room for further improvement.”

A parent with three kids, one in university and two in Cycle 3 public schools, has never filled out an education related survey before. Naeema Farouq Al Wakeel was excited about being given the chance to express her opinion freely for the very first time without having to worry about being judged.

“What’s assuring about the survey is that you don’t need to mention your name or your child’s name. You can simply voice your concerns and areas that you feel require particular attention under anonymity and without being judged,” said Naeema.

Sheikha Ali Al Tunisie, a parent and a Digital Innovation Technology teacher liked how the survey did not focus on a particular sector, individual, specialization. “We had the choice to speak about different topics and areas that affect a school, while voicing our own constructive criticism that we know is in the best interest of our children. It’s also great that our children are given the chance to become part of what I see as a major revamp approach in the education system. I hope to see more of these short, brief, yet articulate surveys.”

Zikrayat Hassan Al Ameri, teacher and parent to three children, one in university and two in Cycle 3, found the questions relevant and important. “I like the idea that ADEC is involving all members of the public in this survey. That’s the way to succeed and move forward, to ask for honest opinions and feedback, while encouraging transparency and honesty.”

Abdulla Al Attas, School Principal in one of the public schools in the capital city felt he was working hand in hand with the education council in offering rational solutions for certain challenges. “The survey covered different topics such as school leadership, developing schools, student behaviour, gifted and talented students and the list goes on. It also offered room to voice our concerns and suggestions on the school curriculum, health and safety and overall management of the school. The answers to these questions will surely offer a wealth of informative feedback and ideas that we hope is released and shared with us once ADEC collects all its responses.”

Ahmed Al Hammadi
Ahmed Al Khayyat Al Hammadi, Project Manager at ADEC.

Project Manager at ADEC, Ahmed Al Khayyat Al Hammadi, explained that the idea behind the survey was to allow the concerned stakeholders to voice their ideas and suggestions, while assisting ADEC in re-visiting some of its decisions and strategy plan.

“A huge part of ADEC’s mission is to involve its teachers and school leaders in its strategy plan. Now we are including more stakeholders, who we are confident will offer fresh new ideas that will assist us in re-prioritising projects, while examining different challenges among different people, he concluded.”

Members of the public may continue to voice their suggestions until Thursday 30th June 2016 through #education_first and can access the survey through the following link:

- ADEC Media