Parents in Sharjah angry over homework on singer

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Parents in Sharjah angry over homework on singer
(Photo used for illustrative purposes only)

Sharjah - Say it's against the value system; school says aim is to develop research skills.


Afkar Ali Ahmed

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Published: Thu 19 May 2016, 12:00 AM

Last updated: Thu 19 May 2016, 4:28 PM

Homework assigned to students of a private school here to gather information on a popular Arab singer from the internet has evoked the anger of parents.
Parents said the Arabic language book for grade 4 must be reviewed by the minister.
According to the parents, one of the exercises in the book is to gather information about a popular Arab singer from the internet as a training for students to use search engines to gather information and write a report on it and then compare it with what the teacher has prepared.
The parents, however, are upset about using singers as the subject. They feel it opposes the values students should learn and wondered if any responsible person has been monitoring the homework assigned and the syllabus.
Parents say educational content shape the personality of students, especially in elementary classes. "The teacher must be aware of the content before he teaches the students," said Mohammed Sayed parent of a student.
Maha Abu Siddo, a parent said students should be told to gather information on historians, historical places, political and religious leaders, mathematicians and other personalities who have served humanity with their inventions of all kind of fields.
B.A, another parent said the syllabus must educate students on the values and morals and should be delivered by good teachers.
Other parents demanded omitting the exercise from the book and choosing content that matches the student's culture, religion and tradition. "The teachers must be approved by the Sharjah Education Zone and should ensure high qualification and experience," she said
Dr. Omar Jafar, member of the board council of the school said students of various grades learn how to conduct research and gather information. The focus of this particular exercise was to improve their research skills. The school is obliged with an educational syllabus of Arabic language and it also has a huge library to help students with research.
"We are now coordinating with Kalimat publishing to empower students in Arabic writing and speaking" he added
He said the school accommodates students from 65 nationalities of which Emirati students form 53 per cent.
The idea of choosing such a celebrity as the subject for assignment was not wrong, because the singer is famous and it would make it easier for the students to do the research he said.
"The aim was only to develop the research skills," he said.
An official at the education zone said they have received complaints from parents and has deputed an investigation committee to the school. The official, however, added that the zone does not think the school has committed any kind of violation.

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