October 2017
لقراءة النشرة باللغة العربية، الرجاء الضغط هنا
What Have We Learned? New Publications

Lack of English proficiency among secondary school graduates is a significant issue in the United Arab Emirates (UAE) as English is the medium of instruction in federal universities. Due to this, one-third of the UAE government's university budget is spent on remedial courses that seek to develop the English-language skills of incoming university students (Salem & Swan, 2014).  Read More

NORRAG News 54: Education, Training and Agenda 2030: What Progress One Year On?

The Sheikh Saud bin Saqr Al Qasimi Foundation for Policy Research is pleased to partner with NORRAG to make select articles from its most recent edition of NORRAG News available in Arabic. Published twice a year, NORRAG News is a digital analytical report with articles addressing the policy implications of research findings and the potential impact of new policies on international education and training formulated by development agencies, foundations, and NGOs. Articles are selected for Arabic translation based on their relevance and potential interest to policymakers in the MENA region.   Read More

This Fact Sheet provides on overview of the education sector in the United Arab Emirates, and in particular, Ras Al Khaimah. It outlines the history of the development of formal education in the country, the important regulatory systems and bodies of both the private and public education sectors, the operational and curricular difference between private and public schools, and the demographics of both the students and teachers by region and school type Read More

The results of international assessments suggest that Arab students are falling behind students in other countries in terms of their academic performance and reading comprehension levels. Research suggests that Arab students may be struggling due to visual, linguistic, and social obstacles. This study uses perspectives from cognitive science to offer recommendations linked to how improving reading comprehension in the early grades can potentially have a positive effect on students' achievement levels and performance on international assessments.  Read More
Given the success and momentum created from its annual Ras Al Kahimah Fine Arts Festival, the Al Qasimi Foundation has officially announced Arts & Culture as its fourth priority area. The new priority area serves as an umbrella for the Foundation's arts-based initiatives, including documentary film grants for young directors and arts education activities with local schools. To provide a home for year-round programming, the Foundation launched a new Studio & Gallery earlier this year and will host regular exhibitions and workshops.  Read More

Hosted by the Al Qasimi Foundation, the Eighth Gulf Comparative Education Symposium will be held from April 7th to 9th, 2018 at Hilton Garden Inn in Ras Al Khaimah, UAE. The theme of this year's Symposium is "Public, Private, and Philanthropic: Exploring the Impact of New Actors on Education in the GCC". We welcome abstracts from policymakers, NGOs, academics, and educators who wish to participate in the debate and explore policies and practices across the Gulf. The deadline for abstract submissions is December 14th, 2017. Read more

The registration for the Inaugural Symposium "Philanthropy in Education: Global Trends, Regional Differences and Diverse Perspectives" is now open! The Symposium is co-sponsored by NORRAG, the Sheikh Saud bin Saqr Al Qasimi Foundation for Policy Research, the Open Society Foundations and the Graduate Institute, Geneva. It will be held from 22 to 24 November at the Maison de la Paix in Geneva and speakers will include Natasha Ridge, Stephen Ball, and Noah Drezner. Click here for more information about the agenda and to register.

Welcome to the 6th Annual Ras Al Khaimah Fine Arts Festival! Want to be part of Ras Al Khaimah's signature annual event? Want to be featured among artists from over 50 countries? Want to walk down the red carpet with famous directors from the region? Send us your artwork to participate in the most awaited art festival of the year! Call for submissions for 2018 will be open till October 20, 2017. Click here for more information

The Al Qasimi Foundation is partnering with Nonprofit Tech for Good for their 2017 Global NGO Technology Survey, an annual research project that studies how NGOs worldwide use technology for engagement, communications, and fundraising. If you work for an NGO, nonprofit, or charity, please take 5 minutes to complete the survey. The data will be used for their 2018 Global NGO Technology Report, which will highlight regional benchmarks and best practices. Respondents from the MENA region are especially encouraged to respond and for the first time the survey is available in Arabic.
In the Headlines 
Girls in the Middle East do better than boys in school by a greater margin than almost anywhere else in the world. It's part of a global pattern: Wherever girls have access to school, they seem to eventually do better than boys. This is especially true of low-income boys who are also receiving greater access. The Middle East is a case study in motivation, mixed messages, and the condition of boys everywhere. 
Read More

Enrolling and retaining national male students has been a main challenge in the UAE, where women comprise 80% to 90% of the students at many universities. Dr. Ridge, executive director of the Al Qasimi Foundation, said gender imbalance at higher education institutions is concerning as the UAE needs to have both men and women who are well educated and able to contribute to the national development of the country.  Read More

In order to raise awareness of recycling, the sixth annual Ras Al Khaimah Fine Arts Festival, in partnership with the Ras Al Khaimah Waste Management Agency, is including a recycled art category within its visual arts strand. Submissions must use recyclable materials from the emirate "or focus on telling the story of recycling" and can come from individuals, students, and school teams. 
Read More

Private schools will be subjected to greater scrutiny by the Government to ensure they are teaching pupils to the highest standards. Dr. Ridge said closer inspections of private school curriculums, exams, and teachers would be a logistical challenge and that while the Ministry of Education's curriculum is already in line with international norms, the gap is in what is implemented versus what is attained.  Read More

The American University of Beirut (AUB) hosted the 2017 annual meeting and general assembly of the Arab Foundations Forum (AFF). This forum is a non-profit group and its membership includes social philanthropy foundations in the Arab region. The AFF acts as a platform that allows these foundations to communicate, exchange knowledge and develop capacities. The AFF seeks to promote social philanthropy and its effectiveness in the Arab world. 
Read More

Tips & Tricks

Cultural awareness can be the key to classroom engagement and building relationships with students, making teachers' jobs easier. It also helps teachers build constructive, collaborative relationships with their colleagues, school administrators, and parents. For new educators in the UAE, the importance of cultural awareness cannot be underestimated. So what do expat teachers need to know? More importantly, how can expat teachers use cultural awareness to build rapport and improve student engagement and success?   Read More
We're Intrigued: Resources with Relevance

In international development, the "evidence revolution" has generated a surge in policy research over the past two decades. We now have a clearer idea of what works and what doesn't. But can policymakers put this evidence to use? We assessed the constraints that keep policymakers from acting on evidence and found that simply presenting evidence to policymakers doesn't improve their decision-making.  Read More
A great PD event can really energize teachers to improve classroom instruction. However, the sad fact is that the majority of PDs are repetitive, simplistic, or boring. Why don't we differentiate teacher professional development like we differentiate our classroom? Here are some simple but effective strategies to improve teacher professional development sessions through differentiation.  Read More

Unemployment is one of the biggest challenges in the Middle East. In this very youthful region, there is a skills gap and most employers are having difficulties finding the type of skills they need in their prospective employees. So, what skills are the most difficult to find, and how do job seekers evaluate themselves on these skills? Insights from the market have implications for the ed sector.  Read More
Debates over historic preservation often run into a problem: There's plenty of data to support economic arguments, and much less to address questions of cultural value. Cultural value is arguably a subjective matter, but imagine that a value of a park or a marketplace can be measured through human experiences. How do we measure the depth of connection between the people, their customs, and places?.  Read More
Join Us: Events & Deadlines 

October 15, 2017:
October 20, 2017:

Members of the press who are interested in covering or learning more about the Al Qasimi Foundation's research, events, or other initiatives may contact  Ms. Caitrin Mullan , Director of Community Engagement and Outreach.
Our Mission

To aid in the social, cultural, and economic development of Ras Al Khaimah and the United Arab Emirates through high-quality policy research, strategic capacity development, and purposeful community engagement.
Sheikh Saud bin Saqr Al Qasimi Foundation for Policy Research