The educational success of 2017 is not a coincidence
08-Nov-2017


Education in the Kingdom in 2017 has witnessed an increasing brilliance, with a raft of successes and awards achieved at the local, regional and global levels. As we approach the end of the year, we face the challenge of maintaining our great achievements in 2018. The main lesson we should learn from 2017 is that success does not happen by chance; rather, it flourishes due to sustained, systematic efforts by decision makers, educators, stakeholders and students themselves.

One of the greatest educational milestones in 2017 was the Quality of Education prize granted to two government elementary schools (Rabia Al Adawia and Al Roudha) during the Government Forum 2017. Such event was under the patronage of Bahrain’s Prime Minister, His Royal Highness Prince Khalifa bin Salman Al Khalifa, and attended by the Crown Prince and First Deputy Prime Minister, His Royal Highness Prince Salman bin Hamad Al Khalifa. A wide range of educational programs have supported the progress made by government schools, and the leaders honoured the distinguished schools that have helped the government-school sector continue on the right path toward further future national development.

In an interview with Bahrain TV after the awards were granted, Dr Majid bin Ali Al-Nuaimi, the Minister of Education, explained that ‘We’ earned this award, reflecting the valuable contributions of every member in the ministry of education. This spirit of teamwork and unity is boosting those who have educational duties to work harder in order to fulfil the government’s recommendations and goals. 

The private educational sector, as well, remains of a crucial concern, due to the need to unequivocally prioritise the quality of education, even in the commercial contexts. The political approach of cooperating with the private sector as a partner in many fields enriches the efforts to improve the performance of private schools, which have also achieved success over the past years. For example, this year Al Eman School was represented in the delegation of the Kingdom of Bahrain for the Arab Reading Challenge Award , sponsored by the UAE Vice President and the Prime Minister and Ruler of Dubai, His Highness Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum. 

The private sector has celebrated qualitative achievements and efforts to reorient toward further success. The future progress of the private sector is of a great concern to the government. His Royal Highness Prince Salman bin Hamad Al Khalifa made direct recommendations to grant further privileges and autonomy to schools that gain recognition for their high quality. Immediate compliance with this policy was implemented by Dr Majid bin Ali Al-Nuaimi, the Minister of Education, who issued a ministerial decision to provide high-performing private schools with numerous advantages, to encourage them to maintain their outstanding performance and motivate the other schools to follow that path. 

Moreover, there are strict ministerial procedures for handling private and governmental schools with low or unsatisfactory performance. In this context, a private school that falls below the acceptable level will be subjected to systematic procedures to improve its ability to fulfil the requirements. The procedures carried out with low-performing private schools required providing a clear school development plan that can be accomplished within a specific timetable; a specialised team from the Ministry of Education intervenes to provide the required support. Non-response and continued low ratings from these schools can lead to further actions, which may limit school expansion in terms of opening new branches or student admission levels. In a worst-case scenario, a school’s license may even be cancelled. These bold actions mean that success is not a mere choice, but a necessity.

In the global news, Kingdom of Bahrain has been elected as one of the vice presidents of UNESCO’s 39th General Assembly, held in 30 October 2017 in Paris. The Kingdom of Bahrain won the confidence of the General Assembly’s members after it was unanimously nominated by the Arab group. The Kingdom’s experience and dedicated efforts in promoting education, science and social development in line with UNESCO’s global standards underpin this important international recognition. 

These are only some of the achievements of 2017, which have raised the bar for 2018. Everyone involved in the education field should celebrate such attainments and redouble their efforts to reach further successes in the future.


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