Posted on June 27, 2014

The Supreme Education Council (SEC) is framing a new curriculum for the state-backed Independent schools to better meet job market requirements while preserving values and traditions of the Qatari society.

A senior SEC official said the framework would be ready by the 2015-2016 academic year for use in some schools on an experimental basis. The first draft will be unveiled in November and the new curriculum will be officially implemented in the 2016-2017 academic year. The current curriculum was prepared during the launch of the education reform initiative about 13 years ago, which also saw the unveiling of the first batch of Independent schools. The syllabus was framed with the support of the US-based Rand Corporation.

Since the establishment of Independent schools there have been criticism from various circles about the curriculum, especially in terms of preserving and promoting Arabic language and the Qatari culture. “We are in the first phase of the project which will include preparing the general framework. The final draft will be made after its revision following feedback from different segments of society,” Fauziya Al Khater, Director, Education Institute, SEC, told a meeting of education experts and academics at Hilton Hotel on Wednesday.

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She said a new curriculum and education plan have become necessary as authorities are seeking to implement Qatar National Vision 2030 that has put human development as top priority. She said the initial draft would be in use in some schools for trial for one year to get feedback, assess contents and make required amendments before it is officially implemented. “SEC is keen to get feedback from all people concerned because everyone is a partner in the education process,” said Al Khater.

She said the new curriculum has been prepared with support of experts and taking lessons from the history of curriculum development in Qatar. “The new curriculum will require training of teachers and we will cooperate with higher educational institutions, particularly Qatar University and universities in Education City. This will help us implement the new curriculum more effectively,” said Al Khater. Iman Al Muhannadi, education expert at SEC, said by introducing a new national curriculum, SEC wants to apply international standards to provide quality education in line with QNV 2030.

‘The teaching and training programmes will be based on the labour market requirements and taking to account the values and traditions of the society,” said Al Muhannadi. She said, work on the new curriculum started in December 2012 with a review of the current syllabi in all subjects and assessment of the students’ needs.

source: The Peninsula