The Knowledge and Human Development Authority (KHDA) announced that around 28,000 teaching, administrative and technical staff returned to public schools on Sunday to prepare for the arrival of students for the new academic year which will start on August 31. KHDA has yet to release the figures for private schools, which will start on September 1, Gulf News reported. Ministry of Education statistics revealed that of the 28,078 people who started work in 678 public schools yesterday, 22,821 were teachers and 5,257 were administration and technical staff. Educational zones across all seven emirates said preparations are under way, noting that maintenance work in public schools is on schedule and they will be ready by the time pupils return from their summer vacation. Hanan Al Attar, a music supervisor at the Sharjah Education Zone who is involved in the preparation process, said the zone is ready for the new academic year.