New UAE weekend: Abu Dhabi school principals hail landmark decision

From January 1, 2022, schools will function from Monday to Thursday, with a half-day on Friday


Ashwani Kumar

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Published: Tue 7 Dec 2021, 8:24 PM

The Department of Education and Knowledge in Abu Dhabi (ADEK) has notified heads of private schools to follow the new weekend system.

From January 1, 2022, schools will function from Monday to Thursday, with a half-day on Friday, while the new weekend will be on Saturday and Sunday.

Principals have received a message from ADEK and welcomed the new system.

Thakur Mulchandani, principal, Sunrise English Private School, termed the decision as ‘landmark’, which will mark a big bang start to 2022 for the educational institutions.

“This is another example of how the UAE is looking after the well-being of students, staff, parents and teachers. I think the UAE must be the first nation in the Gulf to implement such a dynamic and innovative decision. The UAE is marching ahead of the path of progress and success.”

Mulchandani said the decision will make teachers, students and parents happy as they get a two-and-a-half days break to relax. “Saturday and Sunday holiday is a dream. This is wonderful.”

Principals underlined that the new Sunday weekend system meant the UAE will be in line with the global norms.

“We welcome this decision and will comply with it. This is in line with the system followed by most countries globally. This will help when exams fall on Fridays,” said Abdul Kader V.V., principal, the Model School, Abu Dhabi.

Neeraj Bhargava, principal, Abu Dhabi Indian School, said that the holiday on Sunday is a welcome change.

“We will be on the international platform as far as holidays are concerned. We are a CBSE school, which has a holiday on Sunday but works on Friday. So, Sunday holiday will be good for us.”

Bhargava noted that now there could be an increase in the daily class timings.

“So far schools have been working 7 hours a day. Now, I think we will have to increase 1 hour every day and make it 8 hours. We may have 36 hours, which is more than the 5 days we are working at 35 hours. So, school definitely has an advantage.

Mulchandani said they have made plans to be followed as the new weekend takes effect.

“We have structured that out. We will be increasing the timings of every class (Monday to Thursday). We will follow Sunday’s time-table on Friday with curtailed timing.”

But all school principals pointed out that they have just got a message from ADEK and a circular with further directions is being awaited, which will give more clarity.

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