By Tanja Spasojevic, Hummingbird’s General Manager
Dubai, UAE, 17 August 2023: In the UAE, the government continues to prioritise early childhood education as evidenced by the numerous programmes focusing on the well-rounded development of a child from birth to the fourth grade.
The UAE’s commitment to early childhood education has led to substantial investments made both by the government and private sectors, with their initiatives emphasising the continuous improvement of the quality of early childhood education curricula across the country.
This has resulted in the steady increase of academic centres catering to the unique and modern requirements of the country’s youngest citizens and residents. Dubai alone is now home to at least 120 early childhood education centres.
With the expanding market, it has naturally created unprecedented demand for qualified early childhood educators. The country’s increased funding and focus on education allows not only for the expansion of early learning centres but also the recruitment and training of highly qualified professionals in the field.
The heightened demand for skilled early childhood educators has led to a surge in employment opportunities and attractive remuneration packages. According to the Economic Research Institute, the average pay for an early childhood development teacher in the UAE is AED 118,309 a year and AED 57 an hour.
Early childhood educators play a pivotal role in nurturing young learners and instilling in them a love for learning, critical thinking abilities and strong social and emotional skills. Their influence on shaping the UAE’s future leaders, scientists, artists, and innovators, amongst others, cannot be overstated. As such, they need all the support that they can get.
Comprehensive training and professional development opportunities for educators are available across the UAE. Several institutions offer courses to equip teachers and professionals with the right skills and knowledge that meet relevant local and global standards.
One such standard, as per the country’s laws, is that a childcare provider should be licensed to ensure the highest quality of learning. The Federal Authority for Early Childhood Education, which oversees the development of relevant policies, strategies, legislations and programmes, is the one responsible for issuing licenses and monitoring government and private nurseries in the country.
Specialised programmes, workshops, and conferences are being held to equip teachers with the necessary skills to nurture young minds effectively. An example of this is the initiative by the Abu Dhabi Early Childhood Authority (ECA). Launched to provide practical training on child development and quality learning improvements in four languages, the initiative benefited more than 5,800 teachers at over 580 nurseries across Abu Dhabi.
This programme and other similar activities have not only enhanced the quality of early childhood education but also elevated the status of educators within the UAE.
The combination of increased investments, enhanced professional development opportunities, and growing recognition of the importance of early education has created a favourable environment for individuals pursuing a career in this discipline.
The impact of these dedicated professionals on the lives of young learners is profound, as they lay the foundation for a lifetime of success and fulfilment. The UAE’s focus on early childhood education is truly commendable, and the upward trajectory of this career path is set to contribute to the nation’s continued growth and prosperity.