Abu Dhabi: The teaching community in the UAE will now need to be licensed after completing introductory orientation workshops and an intensive four-month programme.

Effective from October 12 a total of 10,000 teachers, supervisors and principals in kindergarten to Grade 12 schools across Dubai and the northern emirates will be given professional training on national standards for curriculum and assessment, teacher pre-service and graduate education, teacher certification and licensure, teacher recruitment, evaluation, compensation and promotion systems and teacher professional development (IPDP).

Shaikh Nahyan Bin Mubarak Al Nahyan, Minister of Higher Education and Scientific Research yesterday said: "Every student matters to us. That's why we are looking at latest educational developments across the world and implementing them in the UAE. The government has always believed that education is the key to a nation's prosperity and with the wise supervision of our leaders, this initiative has taken place."

Shaikh Nahyan and Dr Hanif Hassan, Minister of Education, signed a five-year partnership known as Teachers for the 21st Century, focus on raising student performance in education through creating a highly qualified teaching force.

Training will also be provided by the Association for Supervision & Curriculum Development (ASCD) to 60 employees from the Ministry of Education and Zayed University.

"This is one of the biggest projects of its kind in the Middle East since it is related to developing qualifications of teachers and renovating the whole educational system to benefit our students," said the education minister.

Follow up

Four monthly regional follow-up workshops for 3,000 teachers, supervisors and principals will be delivered by trained bilingual educations. Workshops will be held every month.

"We will train teachers to get licensed. We will start with 10,000, but our aim is to train all teachers across the UAE on teaching as a science - how the brain learns, learning environments that support positive student interaction, inquiry, creativity, responsibility and many more," said Elizabeth Ross, educational consultant at the Ministry of Education.

Dr Joseph Ghaly, executive director and CEO of the Association for Supervision and Curriculum Development Middle East, told Gulf News that academics will be able to access online professional development courses and performance criteria, assessment tools, focus groups and forums for local and international educators.

Key features

Support material

The programme resources will include research based and customised support materials including:

- 20 books translated to Arabic

- Three books translated to Arabic for all 10,000 teachers

- Professional development certification courses

- Multimedia, articles, monographs, etc

- All specialised materials for workshops.