Sharjah educators concern at lack of Emirati teachers

Said Al Kaabi, chairman of Sharjah Education Council, said the number of nationals working in education, whether as teachers or in other roles, had been decreasing for years.

SHARJAH // The lack of Emirati teachers will become one of the biggest problems faced by schools and universities in the emirate in coming years, according to the Sharjah Education Council.

Said Al Kaabi, chairman of SEC, said the number of nationals working in education, whether as teachers or in other roles, had been decreasing for years.

“In the school year 2011-2012, we had 30 Emirati teachers, and 68 in administrative roles,” said Mr Al Kaabi, who revealed that today the number of teachers was only half that figure and that the ratio was far too low.

Mr Al Kaabi also said that more than Dh500 million had been spent on education by the Sharjah government since 2012, with Dh300 million going towards building new Model schools around the emirate and upgrading existing schools.

Model schools were introduced across the UAE in 1994 to improve pupils’ education and instil community values. About 65 per cent of elementary schools in the emirate have completed the transition to Model schools in terms of the educational process, while about half of secondary schools have been upgraded.

“Changing to the Model system in all aspects takes time,” said Mr Al Kaabi. “Training teachers and pupils to embrace the new system is challenging. Radical change is always faced by resistance in any organisation or department.”

Building work is almost complete on 22 new Model elementary schools that will feature medical clinics, laboratories, theatres, playgrounds and recreational rooms. Completion is expected early in the new year.

tzriqat@thenational.ae

Published: December 26, 2014 04:00 AM

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