Needs Assessment for Effective Inclusion in United Arab Emirates’ Government Schools

By Eman Gaad and Roeia Thabet.

Published by The Social Sciences Collection

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Article: Print $US10.00
Article: Electronic $US5.00

In the United Arab Emirates (UAE) there are changes in the way children with special educational needs are receiving their education and their general services. There is a movement towards including them in society and in the education system following the federal law No 29/2006 that was issued to organise and protects the rights for citizens with disabilities. The law came in line with the international movement towards mainstreaming such individuals however there is a desperate need to understand their real needs and requirements in order to serve them better. This is a reserach report on a funded project for a pre-inclusion research project to define and assess the needs in the Emarati contexts in order for effective inclusion to be applied.

Keywords: UAE, Needs Assessment, Inclusion, Special Needs, Schools

International Journal of Interdisciplinary Social Sciences, Volume 4, Issue 6, pp.159-174. Article: Print (Spiral Bound). Article: Electronic (PDF File; 1.467MB).

Prof. Eman Gaad

Senior Lecturer, Faculty of Education, The British University in Dubai, Dubai, United Arab Emirates

Dr. Gaad is a Senior lecturer at The British University in Dubai’s Institute of Education, and leads the University’s high quality Masters programme in Special Education. She is currently the Executive Director of UAEDSA (United Arab Emirates Down Syndrome Association) and on Board of Directors of few non-profit organizations in the UAE. She is also on the international advisory board for JORSEN, an international peer-reviewed journal and an associate editor for another. She has a wealth of teaching experience in the UAE and overseas. Prior to joining BUiD in 2004, Dr. Gaad was on the faculty of the UAE University, Department of Special Education for five years and lectured at the School of Education and Professional Development at the University of East Anglia, UK for five years. Dr. Gaad has devoted much of her work to the area of Special Needs and has published the findings of her research work in international journals, such as The British Journal of Special Education, International Journal for Educational Management, JORSEN, and International Journal of Inclusive Studies. Dr. Gaad also works with local communities to help parents of children with special needs to facilitate their placement in regular schools.

Roeia Thabet

Post Graduate Research Student, Education, The British University in Dubai, Dubai, United Arab Emirates

Roeia Thabet was born in Oman and studied her primary and secondary education in Arabic government schools similar to UAE education system. Then she completed most of her studies in Jordan and UAE universities and has Masters Degree in Education (International Management and Policy) from The British University in Dubai. Thesis topic: Do public schools in UAE foster critical thinking as one of the main objectives of education? She is also, a doctoral (Edd) student in International Management and Policy in the British University in Dubai. She conducted educational research in government schools in UAE. The reason of conducting this pilot study (MA dissertation) was to serve the enhancement of intelligent behavior as a legitimate goal of education and to invite critical assessment of existing school practices to the contribution to students’ instinctual growth and to foster critical and cognitive thinking in teaching strategies. She worked as a researcher in the British University in Dubai which involved a Needs Assessment for Effective Inclusion in United Arab Emirates’ Government Schools. Currently she is working as a project Manager in INDEMAJ which is a non profit organization under the Patronage of HRH Princess Haya Bint Al Hussein, wife of HH Sheikh Mohammed Bin Rashid Al Maktoum Vice-President and Prime Minister of the UAE, Ruler of Dubai. It aims to enable all children with particular focus on children with special needs in the UAE, and in the region to reach their full potentials, and become effective participating citizens of a global productive society.

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