KHDA to measure pupils' wellbeing in Dubai

Full census of 70,000 pupils will begin in November.

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A new study aims to measure the wellbeing of all middle school pupils across Dubai next academic year.

The Student Wellbeing Census, run by the Knowledge and Human Development Authority in partnership with the Department of Education and Child Development (DECD) in South Australia, will survey 70,000 pupils in Grades 6, 7, 8 and 9 (equivalent to Year 7, 8, 9 and 10) from every private school in Dubai beginning in November.

Census data will provide schools with an in-depth understanding of how pupils feel about their school life, home life, themselves and their relationships with others.

The data will also provide insight into pupils' attitudes towards their experiences in and out of school. This data will then enable school leaders to better design their schools’ wellbeing culture, and will allow policymakers to make evidence-based changes that have positive long-term impact on the education community, according to the KHDA.

Census questions have been adapted to Dubai’s education culture and will be offered in both English and Arabic.

The full census of 70,000 students will begin in November, with Dubai-wide results to be released in January. Schools will also be given their own results, which they may choose to share with parents.

The census follows the completion of a pilot involving 2,500 students from 19 private schools.

“Wellbeing will soon have as much importance as academics in fulfilling the purpose of education,” said Dr Abdulla Al Karam, director general of KHDA. “With this trial, we’ve taken another step on our journey to seeing that purpose put into practice across all schools in Dubai.”