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The UAE Ministry of Education (MoE) and the Abu Dhabi Education Council (ADEC) announced the alignment of Abu Dhabi education system with the federal education system under the Emirati School Model (ESM), to improve the efficiency of education and achieve a standardised education system across the UAE.

The alignment between the Ministry of Education and ADEC aims to standardise policies and curriculum in all all public schools across the UAE in order to raise the efficiency of the education system and ensure the best use of available resources, as well as create a solid national plan to improve the performance of education in the country.

Commenting on the announcement, H.E. Mr. Abdulrahman Al Hammadi, Undersecretary of the MoE said: “the MoE and ADEC, in line with the guidelines for unifying the education system, formed a joint committee to outline a standardisation plan for the education system. This in turn has lead to establishing blueprints for plans covering all basic courses and an agreement on fundamental details. Preparations to ensure a smooth beginning of the 2017/2018 academic year and the Ministry’s subsequent tasks and responsibilities towards public education all over the UAE has been established.”

H.E. Mr. Al Hammadi added:  “The standardisation of the education system will align the curriculum, assessments and examinations with the Ministry of Education, and ensure proper management of problems affecting students. This monumental collaboration between ADEC and the Ministry of Education is a sure step to provide the best education outcomes for students.”

Regarding the  MoE’s exact role, His Excellency  added that the MoE will monitor schools in the Emirate of Abu Dhabi to ensure they comply with its laws, regulations and policies. ADEC will be periodically informed of the results of the supervision at all stages of the education process. The  MoE and ADEC formed a committee to review smart solutions and electronic educational systems, including managing students data, while considering optimal methods and standardisation across the UAE. H.E. reasserted the Ministry’s commitment to provide textbooks for the 2017/2018 academic year to all Grades.

H.E. Dr. Yousif Al Sheryani, Advisor to ADEC’s Director General said in collaboration with the MoE, ADEC has formed a joint task force to outline plans and ensure a smooth start for the 2017-2018 academic year as well as a smooth transition period for 2018-2019. Meetings and workshops have been held to review and discuss plans and reach an agreement on the functions and powers of MoE and ADEC in the light of the process of standardising the education system across the UAE.

“For ADEC, the process of standarizing the education system means the continuation of teaching Science and Mathematics in English as is currently practiced. Adding an extra class to the educuation system in Abu Dhabi to the courses currently accredited by the federal system will be considered and coordinated,” added Dr. Al Sheryani.

In line with the guidelines for the standardization of the education system, assessing public and private schools will be the responsibility of ADEC. The MoE will be periodically briefed on the results of the assessments. The Ministry will coordinate with ADEC prior to creating, cancelling, adding, modifying or standarizing any aspect that may affect the education system, without affecting the educational process.

“Students will have the freedom to choose their majors and classes at the university level,” said Mr. Al Sheryani, adding that “the requirments of the general examinations and university admission will always be adhered to and taken into consideration. Grade 12 students will be exempt from following the federal education system in specialized courses during the transitional period, while Grades 10 and under will be included at the the beginning of the next academic year, with the possibility of including Grade 11 to the unified education system.”

ADEC and the MoE school readiness plans for the 2017/2018 academic year includes aligning educatioan plans for 2017/2018, as well as delivering textbooks for the first semester, providing other educational and enrichment resources to all schools, as well as e-books to school staff.

The 2017/2018 academic year assessment and evaluation policies, methods and tools will be agreed, standardised and applied (until the end of the academic year 2017/2018). Academic Quality Improvement Officers (AQIO’s) will be trained among others, and a Professional Development Week will be set up. Teachers will be informed of the new curriculum.

The School Readiness Plan for the academic year ensures that teachers have access to all existing education resources available. It also ensures that ongoing training is implemented, until the end of the 2017/2018 academic year.

Other points agreed upon by the MoE and ADEC’s joint committee include teaching English from Kindergarten to Grade 1o, the preparation by ADEC for an English language curriculum from Kindergarten to Grade 12, as well as the provision of relevant textbooks and the implementation of ADEC curriculum in English, Mathematics and Science from Kindergarten through to Grade 5.

Other points included the implementation of ADEC’s Technology, Design and Innovation curriculum and the provision of all relevant textbooks to Grades 1, 2, 3 and 12. Grades 6 to 11 will follow the Ministry’s curriculum. The MoE’s Arabic Language, Islamic Studies and Social Studies will be taught from the Kindergarten all the way to Grade 12. The Ministry will ensure that the curriuclum is available in the electronic library before the beginning of the academic year.

Examinations and assessments for Islamic Education, Arabic Language, and Social Studies will be standardized for all Grades. They will be the same for the transitional stage. By the beginning of and throughout the academic year, all examinations and assessments will follow a standardized policy, which includes descriptive and quantitative assessments.

Unifiying the education system across the UAE establishes a standard, consolidated national education system to ensure that teachers meet the requirements needed to successfully teach the curriculum. This will be assessed and ensured during the specialized training week at the beginning of the academic year. ADEC and the MoE will standarize the training model for efficiency.

Standardising and unifying the education system across all UAE schools will build an innovative education system for a world-class, competitive, knowledge-based society at all stages to meet the requirements of the job market. It ensures the quality of education and its output in all UAE schools, while providing excellent services to students and everyone working in the education field.