Dubai: KHDA to give top high school students academic sponsorship, 'financial rewards'

The initiative is aimed at meeting the demands of the emirate's future job market by recognising and incentivising its high-performing pupils


Nandini Sircar

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Published: Mon 16 Jan 2023, 4:19 PM

Last updated: Mon 16 Jan 2023, 6:52 PM

To help learners stay organised, and as students across Dubai gear up for their secondary school (external) exams, pupils are once again being reminded that high performing candidates in the emirate are eligible for academic sponsorship.

As per the Knowledge and Human Development Authority’s rewards system, outstanding students in specific curricula like IB, UK, US, and Ministry of Education (MOE) curricula will be eligible for these “financial rewards.”

Sheikh Hamdan bin Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Crown Prince of Dubai and Chairman of The Executive Council, had announced this reward scheme to recognise Dubai’s highest-performing secondary school students in specific curricula, and provide them with financial rewards and academic sponsorship.

As per KHDA’s Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ), rewards will be based on students’ "final scores in international board exams.”

Positive educational outcomes

The initiative is aimed at meeting the demands of Dubai’s future job market by recognising and incentivising the emirate’s top students.

Dr Abdulla Al Karam, Director-General of the Knowledge and Human Development Authority (KHDA), had earlier highlighted that the new system "reflects the high priority placed on education in Dubai by the leadership, and their recognition that the younger generation plays a central role in achieving Dubai’s future goals.

"Dubai has identified education as a vital driver of the growth of the knowledge-based economy, and it is committed to incentivising students to raise performance through recognitions and rewards for their achievements. This will have a significantly positive impact on educational outcomes in the emirate," he added.

How does this work?

KHDA coordinates with private schools in Dubai to identify the top performing students across all included international curricula using tariff point weighting. Based on international best practices, the system calculates students’ assessment results submitted by their schools and provides scores across the curricula. Scores are calculated separately by the Ministry of Education for schools offering the MoE curriculum.

The programme is aligned with the strategic objectives of the Emirati Human Resources Development Council in Dubai.

As per KHDA, “the initiative also supports the UAE’s goal of supporting Emirati development and maximising Emiratisation rates. It also aims to highlight students’ specific talents and competencies and guide them to contribute towards future-focused sectors of the economy.”

The scheme will include financial rewards for students, as well as academic scholarships for Emiratis at universities at home and abroad. Expatriate students will receive discounts at international university branches in Dubai and will be granted priority in receiving golden visas for themselves and their families.

The system also plays a positive role in attracting young talent from across the world. This, in turn, helps enhance Dubai’s competitiveness as a global education destination, and its reputation as a city that recognises and celebrates student accomplishments.


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