UAE schools are aiming to recruit more graduates in teaching positions in order to meet rising Emiratisation targets.
One leading school group said Emiratis are mostly being hired in administrative and non-teaching roles, but efforts are being made to ensure more are leading lessons.
It is a different story with Arabic studies, particularly in Sharjah, where many Emiratis have been hired to teach the subject.
The Sharjah Private Education Authority said 85 Emirati teachers were now part of the private education sector after being trained since 2019. A majority of these teach Arabic, Islamic studies and social studies.
The goal is to train Emiratis in teaching and to support undergraduate and graduate students to take up education as a profession, the authority said.
An all-time high 92,000 citizens now work in the private sector, figures announced last month show, as private companies with 50 employees or more need to ensure that 6 per cent of their workforce is Emirati by the end of this year.
The UAE's Nafis programme was introduced in September 2021 with a mission to ensure 10 per cent of all jobs in the private sector were taken up by citizens by the end of 2026, as part of a major Emiratisation push.
The population supply of qualified candidates for teaching roles of Emirati nationality, are fewer relative to the overall demand in the region at the moment
John Mayes, chief people officer at Gems Education Kirti Badlani, group human resources manager at Ambassador Schools, which operates three schools in the UAE, said Emiratisation was initially a challenge but that they are now on track to hit the target.
“It was a bit challenging initially when it had picked up, but I think we have been able to do pretty well,” Ms Badlani told The National.
“Predominantly, most of our Emirati colleagues are in the administration department because, when we started, we were looking more at the administration roles.”
She said they need to consider the criteria set by the Knowledge and Human Development Authority – Dubai's private education regulator – while hiring for teaching positions and are optimistic about hiring Emirati candidates in Arabic or IT teaching roles.
Source: The National