Abu Dhabi: The need for greater technological integration in schools and the challenges in shaping pupils who can excel in higher education and the job market too are some of the difficulties facing the educational sector today. These were some of the issues highlighted at a press conference announcing the inaugural edition of the Transforming Education Summit (TES), which will take place from May 7 to 9 at the Emirates Palace Hotel in Abu Dhabi.

Dr Mugheer Khamis Al Khaili, Director General of Abu Dhabi Education Council (Adec), which is organising the biennial event said: “The aim of TES is to address how educational change can be implemented across sectors in societies around the world… the UAE, like its partners in the GCC, seeks to reap a ‘demographic dividend’ if transformations in education are properly implemented.”


The event is being held under the patronage of General Shaikh Mohammad Bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Crown Prince of Abu Dhabi and Deputy Supreme Commander of the UAE Armed Forces, who is also Chairman of Adec.

“Given that 65 per cent of the population is under 25 years of age, Adec has a mandate to maximise the potential of young people in Abu Dhabi and empower them to be part of their society’s remarkable growth,” Al Khaili said.

Over 150 international delegates, including former UK prime minister Gordon Brown, Malaysian deputy prime minister and minister of education Muhyiddin Yassin as well as business leaders and leading academics, will take part in the three-day summit.

Richard Shediac, senior vice-president at Booz and Company, said: “According to a study we are presenting at the summit, one in four young people are currently unemployed in the Middle East, which is double the global unemployment rate. Among the reasons for this is the lower level educational quality being offered in the region.”

Following the event, Booz and Company will release a report in partnership with Adec containing recommendations amassed from the summit’s discussions, to be used by participants to help effect change in their home countries. Adec will also host a summit to discuss these findings later on in the year