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Parents Get a Say in Dubai Schools’ Quality Checks

Afshan Ahmed / 28 September 2009

DUBAI — The education authority in the emirate is seeking parents’ views on the quality of education in schools through a questionnaire on its website.

The Knowledge and Human Development Authority (KHDA) has given each school a username and password that will be sent to the parents who can then log on to www.khda.gov.ae and complete the questionnaire.

The response will be included in the full inspection report, which the authority will publish at the end of the second cycle of inspections.

The quality checks by the Dubai School Inspection Bureau (DSIB), which began in 2008, did not include parents’ feedback in its first cycle.

“All parents this year will have an opportunity to comment on the work of their school by completing an online questionnaire at the time of school inspection,” said Jameela Al Muhairi, chief of DSIB. “We shall be interviewing about 10 parents at each school to include their perspective in this year’s reports,” she added.

The survey allows parents to mark ‘Strongly Agree’, ‘Agree’, ‘Disagree Strongly’ ‘Disagree’ and ‘Don’t know’ in topics on subjects, staff , safety and productivity at school. Parents are being asked if the school looks into matters of concern when raised and if they have responded positively to the recommendations of the previous inspections.

The competence of the teachers will be judged on responses to questions, including whether the teaching is good, staff encourage the child to become independent and teachers explain how to help parents at home with school work. Additional space for comments by parents is allotted for inputs.

A parent of two girls at the Dubai Scholars, who received the details from the authority last week, said she is yet to complete the questionnaire.

“I think parent feedback will help in the inspection process as it will provide our side of the story this time,” said the mother, who did not wish to be named.

The questionnaire can be filled only once and, according to the KHDA Call Center, the responses cannot be changed once submitted. Parents are requested to provide their name, telephone address and email address, with a reassurance that the answers will be kept confidential.


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