H.H. Sheikh Abdullah bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Minister of Foreign Affairs and International Co-operation and Chairman of the Education and Human Resources Council, has called on UAE schools to contribute to achieving the UAE’s national agenda and making it their priority, and raising the awareness of students and parents about its importance.
He also called on them to invest in raising the skills of students and teachers and to draft plans and initiatives to achieve the national agenda and its goals.
In his speech, during a ceremony organised by the Education and Human Resources Council to honour 30 exceptional schools that obtained outstanding results in international examinations in 2015 at the Higher Colleges of Technology in Dubai, he said, "I am delighted to be with a leading group of students today. Due to your efforts and those of your peers, the educational process is progressively achieving the goals of the community, which highlights the importance of today’s initiative to honour leading schools in international examinations.
He added that the council has honoured 30 schools that obtained exceptional results in TIMSS and PISA examinations, proving the presence of exceptional educational models in the UAE, while noting that the honouring ceremony promotes the role of schools in achieving the national agenda’s goals, as drafted by Vice President and Prime Minister and Ruler of Dubai, His Highness Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum.
Hussain bin Ibrahim Al Hammadi, Minister of Education, praised the honoured schools for their clear excellence, highlighting that this excellence is in line with the nation’s ambitions.
He stressed that the Education and Human Resources Council, led by H.H. Sheikh Abdullah, has made education its priority and is seeking to achieve best educational practices. He highlighted that the honouring ceremony will motivate the country’s schools to move forward to enhance their performance and produce greater competitiveness, by achieving high-quality educational outcomes. This will achieve the vision and aspirations of the UAE’s wise leadership, with regards to the national agenda’s indicators, to be among the world’s top 20 countries in international examinations by 2021.
Jameela bint Salem Al Muhairi, Minister of State for Public Education, stated that more than 140 schools in the UAE have achieved higher than the international average in the TIMSS Grade 4 exam, and more than 130 schools achieved higher than the international average in the TIMSS Grade 8 exam. In addition, more than 50 schools achieved higher than the international average in PISA studies, and more than 60 schools achieved a 550 point or above score in TIMSS studies for Grades 4 and 8, while more than 20 schools achieved the same grade in PISA studies.
The Programme for International Student Assessment (PISA) is a set of standardised tests designed and delivered by the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) to measure student’s performance at the age of 15.
The Trends in International Maths and Science Study (TIMSS) is an international survey that monitors the maths and science achievement of year 5 (pupils aged 9-10) and year 9 (pupils aged 13-14) pupils world-wide.