Seventy-one schools — 69 public and two private ones — were evaluated starting October 18, 2009, to gauge the quality of education in Sharjah, Ajman, Ras Al Khaimah, Fujairah and Umm Al Quwain. The ministry will roll out the accreditation process in the remaining 403 schools and has developed a handbook detailing the procedure involved.
Humaid Mohammed Obaid Al Qattami, Minister of Education, said the accreditation is a gateway to upgrade schools and is based on international standards that ensure continuous improvement in school environment, facilities and its links with the community.
“We want schools to know that this is important to improve,” said, Shaikha Al Shamsi, director of Accreditation and Licensure at the ministry. “We are the schools’ partners and will help them enhance their performance by aiding them with a diagnosis of their system,” she said.
The academic accreditation process is being conducted in collaboration with Centre for British Teachers Education Trust (CfBT) and the ministry will train evaluators to understand the nature of the diverse curricula schools teach. A team of three evaluators — two external and one affiliated to the MOE — will visit each school for two days. The schools will be notified in advance about the visit and will have to prepare all documents as per the requirements specified in the handbook. Evaluators will spend 60 per cent of their time in the classrooms and will also interview teaching staff, students and their parents.
Schools that meet all criteria except one will be given three months to take corrective action. If they achieve the goal by the time of the follow-up visit, the school will be granted an accreditation. However, those found lacking in more than one criteria will be able to gain an accreditation only in the next cycle. — email@example.com