In the presence of His Highness Sheikh Theyab Bin Mohammed Bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Emirates Foundation Board Member, Emirates Foundation for Youth Development, in collaboration with the British University in Dubai, held a graduation ceremony today in honor of 52 Emirati women who have completed the practical and theoretical parts of the ‘Teacher Assistant’ program. His Highness Sheikh Theyab Bin Mohammed Bin Zayed Al Nahyan honored the 52 Emirati women who successfully completed the program. The Kayani 2014 graduation ceremony was held today at Fairmont Bab Al Bahr Hotel.
The 12 month program is divided in two stages – a theoretical phase and a practical phase. During the theoretical stage of the program, completed last year, the 52 Emirati women were provided with key principles for working as assistant teachers. The second and final phase of the program prepared them to put their knowledge into practice at various public schools across the UAE.
The ‘Teacher Assistant Program’ is an initiative from Kayani, one of the Emirates Foundation’s leading projects. It was launched in 2012 and is aimed at training and empowering young Emirati women between the ages of 18-35 to work as assistant teachers.
Maytha Al Habsi, Chief Programmes Officer at Emirates Foundation, said: “We are proud of what these women have achieved in the last 12 months. Knowledge is a powerful tool and during this period we have seen their motivation to give back to the community.
“The ‘Teacher Assistant Program’, which is an initiative from Kayani, constitutes a quantitative leap and is an innovative initiative in the educational process in the UAE. It further gives our young Emirati woman the opportunity to better interact, learn, and become an effective member of the community. By empowering young Emiratis to become teachers in the UAE and the wider Middle East, the ‘Teacher Assistant’ initiative aims to drive positive change in the community through education,” Al Habsi added.
Prof. Abdullah Al Shamsi, Vice-Chancellor, The British University in Dubai, said during the graduating ceremony: “Our collaboration with the Emirates Foundation for Youth and Development has been a great success and we are delighted to have contributed to such an innovative project whose success proves the increasing importance of education for Emirati women. With continued support from His Highness Sheikh Abdullah bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Chairman of Emirates Foundation for Youth and Development, and the Ministry of Education and Abu Dhabi Council we are confident that many more young Emirati women will enroll with the programme with an aim to not only empower themselves, but also with a drive to give back to the community.”
The program is the result of a number of research studies that were carried out, advocating inclusive education for students with special needs in mainstream public schools. In addition to providing a specialized teaching staff capable of choosing the most appropriate ways to help each student learn according to his/her abilities.
The program was designed and implemented by the Emirates Foundation for Youth according to international standards, and in collaboration with the British University in Dubai. The ‘Teacher Assistant Program’ is the first of its kind for training female teacher assistants in the UAE. The program is continuously and comprehensively evaluated by the program’s management board and the committee for development and quality at the British University in Dubai.
The program has succeeded in achieving a twofold objective, first by facilitating inclusive education for students with special needs and learning difficulties in public schools, and second by enabling a great number of Emirati women to work in an appealing and inspiring environment. The objective comes in line with the UAE’s plans to develop education as a requirement necessary to achieve comprehensive and sustainable development.
Commenting on the program, Fawzeya Ali,one of the graduate student said: “The ‘Teacher Assistant Program’ has empowered me to explore a completely new world. We have been given the opportunity to not only pursue our dreams and complete our education, but today we stand with our heads held high where I am able to help others like me. ”
The Emirates Foundation’s social inclusion programs provide young Emiratis with the opportunity to participate in meaningful employment and community engagement, giving them a voice to reach and work with other young people to identify solutions based on best practices.
Kayani Programme was launched in 2012 as an initiative by the Emirates Foundation for Youth Development, in cooperation with the British University in Dubai. The Programme is considered a qualitative leap and an innovative initiative in the educational process in the UAE and the Middle East. It aims to train young Emiratis who haven’t completed their higher studies and are consequently unemployed, and empower them to work as teacher assistants in public schools. The program is also supported by both the Ministry of Education in the UAE and Abu Dhabi Education Council.