UAE to pilot teacher licensing scheme next yearMay 2, 2016, 12:04 pm GMT
The proposed professional licence for teachers in the UAE is expected to be introduced in 2017 and fully implemented by 2021.
National Qualifications Authority director general Dr Thani Al Mehairi said: "The new system will be implemented over five years such that all teachers will be licensed by 2021, in line with the requirements of the UAE National Agenda," according to a report by The National.
The teacher licensing framework is a joint effort between the NQA, the Knowledge and Human Development Authority (KHDA), the Abu Dhabi Education Council (ADEC), and the Abu Dhabi Centre for Technical and Vocational Education and Training.
Under the new framework, teachers, principals, vice principals, and cluster managers working in public and private schools will have to pass a national examination and show a portfolio of evidence.
A six-month long pilot project will be testing using 750 teachers, and could be introduced as early as this year if approvals come through on time.
Al Mehairi said: "As soon as the pilot committee approves the process, selected teachers and schools will go through. An evaluation will be conducted to adjust any shortcomings and narrow the gaps that can affect the final licensing process. After that, all teachers will commence mandatory licensing."
Teacher qualifications currently vary across the country. In Abu Dhabi, ADEC regulates teacher recruitment, while in Dubai and the Northern Emirates, the Ministry of Education outlines the basic credentials public school teachers must hold. Dubai's private schools are regulated by the KHDA.
According to the NQA, the new licensing system will require teachers to hold a bachelor's degree or equivalent experience and qualification. Other requirements are expected to be announced later.
"ADEC, KHDA and the Ministry of Education already have strong requirements for allowing teachers to practice. However, the teacher standards framework provides rigorous and common measures and indicators against which teachers and leaders can be recruited, licensed and incentivised," said Al Mehairi.
A standardised licensing framework will also offer more mobility for teachers in the country, according to Al Mehairi.
"Given that the UAE employs a large number of teachers from other countries, there is a critical need for a unified system to ensure minimum entry requirements are met
A unified teacher licensing framework is the latest initiative for the country.
The Ministry of Education, the KHDA, and ADEC introduced the unified UAE School Inspection Framework at the beginning of the 2015/16 academic year.
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