Students, teachers find solace in new schools

ABU DHABI — Some of the teachers from the closed villa schools will be joining the new private schools in Muroor and Baniyas for the upcoming school term.

By Olivia Olarte

Published: Sat 14 Aug 2010, 1:07 AM

Last updated: Thu 2 Apr 2015, 11:09 AM

According to Kasey Conrad, education consultant and policy specialist from the Universal Future Education (UFE), majority of the 30 teachers shortlisted for the Abu Dhabi Philippine Academy was from the Pioneers International Private School.

“Around 80 per cent of them are from the Pioneers school,” she said, adding that the interviews are still going on.

UFE, a school management and consulting firm in Abu Dhabi, recently won the bid to operate the Abu Dhabi Philippine Academy in Muroor and the UFE Private Academy in Baniyas. Ashraf Tamil, chief operations manager at UFE said that out of the 15 teachers shortlisted for the UFE Private Academy, 10 are from the five villa schools that were closed down.

“We called the teachers, but some of them are not qualified. We want to make sure that we are hiring the really qualified ones,” he said, noting that there are a number of qualified teachers in Baniyas.

The Arabic-language villa schools that closed down on June 30 included Azhar Palestine School, Al Sahaba Private School and Kindergarten, Al Mashreq Private School, Cultural Private School and Coast Private School.

“We are doing the analysis of salary schedule and salary package for both schools and we hope to complete that by Sunday. We’ll prepare our salary scale based on the teacher’s experience and education,” Conrad told Khaleej Times.

Conrad said the UFE had started interviewing candidates several weeks ago in anticipation of the approval of its application from the Abu Dhabi Education Council (ADEC).

“We’re working as hard as we can to find the right people. And it’s a little bit difficult considering the time constraint. Right now, we’re looking from the local people here and we will also look at recruiting international teachers during the second semester,” she added.

The number of teachers at each school would depend on the strength of the students getting enrolled. The Philippine Academy expects to hire more than 30 teachers while the UFE Academy expects to appoint more than 40.

To date, the Philippine Academy has enrolled more than 600 students while around 100 pupils have registered for the UFE Academy. UFE plans to have a 25:1 student/teacher ratio in each class.

Both Conrad and Tamil expressed confidence in getting the right educators for the new schools having come across a number of qualified candidates.

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