Closure of schools leaves 870 students in the lurch

AL GHARBIA (ABU DHABI) - The future of around 870 expatriate students hangs in balance with four private primary schools in Al Gharbia (Western Region) deciding not to reopen in the new academic year. No reason was given for the closure of the schools.



By (By a correspondent)

Published: Fri 15 Aug 2008, 12:20 AM

Last updated: Sun 5 Apr 2015, 5:03 PM

The parents of the students of these schools, located in Madinat Zayed, Al Sala'a and Al Ruwais, are in a dilemma with the new academic session beginning on September 1. They are worried that their children might not get quality education. They say the other private schools in Al Gharbia are not up to the standard.

Bakr Abdel Aziz Ahmed, father of a student of one these schools and a resident of Madinat Zayed, said he was informed of the school's decision at the end of the last academic year.

He is worried because the other private schools in the area do not match the standard of the closed school. Besides, the other private schools might exploit the situation of these stranded students and double the tuition fees. Moreover, the classrooms would be crowded, he said.

Fawzi Al Khudari, father of another student, said the Western Region lacks private schools that conform to the standard set by the Ministry of Education. The majority of the schools do not even have the basic facilities to provide quality education. The schools are refusing to develop their facilities.

The principal of one of the schools denied the accusations against the private schools in the Western Region.

He said these schools offer educational services commensurate with the low tuition fees charged in contrast to what are being collected by the private schools in Abu Dhabi city.

Raising the standard of education depends on the tuition fees charged by the schools, the principal said, and added these schools incur a lot of expenses, while most of the local residents draw low salaries and wages.

Director-General of the Western Region Education Zone Khalfan Issa bin Rasas Al Mansoury said the zone would not allow the schools to exploit the students transferred from the four closed schools. The zone would monitor the student strength and the capacity of each school and would not allow the classrooms to be overcrowded.

Al Mansoury said the zone would discuss the problem of the students who do not get admission in any of the private schools before the beginning of the new academic year and the Abu Dhabi Education Council would take a proper decision.

The zone has embarked on a comprehensive plan to monitor all private schools in the region, said Gadriyya Mohammed Al Bishri, Deputy Director for Administrative Affairs in the region. The schools, she said, would be given an opportunity to rectify their legal status for getting accreditation .

Remarks about the schools that are found violating the laws and regulations would be given to the school managements in the form of a report. Such schools would be given a grace period of nearly four months to rectify the shortcomings. If a particular school fails to do so even after the grace period, it would be shut down.


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