Sheikha Fatima: Education process, led by Khalifa and Mohammed bin Rashid, witnessing qualitative changes
Abu Dhabi, 23 April 2012 (WAM) - H.H. Sheikha Fatima bint Mubarak, Chairwoman of the General Women's Union, Head of the Family Development Foundation, Head of the Supreme Council for Motherhood and Childhood (Mother Of Nation), and Distinguished Personality of the Year" asserted that, under the auspices of His Highness Sheikh Khalifa bin Zayed Al Nahyan, President of the State, along with the efforts of His Highness Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice-President and Prime Minister and Ruler of Dubai, the march of education has witnessed qualitative and quantitative changes both at the level of development and the increase in the number of schools, teachers and students.
In an exclusive interview with Attamayuz News magazine appreciated efforts of H.H. Sheikh Hamdan Bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Deputy Ruler of Dubai and Minister of Finance, Patron of the award; these efforts which were invested by the people of the United Arab Emirates in their good work and production.
"Hamdan bin Rashid Al Maktoum Award for Distinguished Academic Performance has presented over 14 years a scientific approach towards the development of academic and educational process out of the belief of His Highness in the importance of education and knowledge role as an effective tool in the progress of economic and social development," she said.
Sheikha Fatima stated that the performance of vision of the late Sheikh Zayed bin Sultan Al Nahyan, may Allah rest His soul in peace, that "the citizen always comes first as a main goal and major spring" is the greatest award Her Highness receives. Moreover, Her Highness mentioned that women have achieved the aspirations of the UAE; and that they have aptly proved their competence to hold leadership positions.
Text of the interview: Your Highness have realized the importance of knowledge, and lived with the first moments of construction of the United Arab Emirates, with the company of the founder and builder of UAE renaissance, the late Sheikh Zayed bin Sultan Al Nahyan, how do Your Highness see the education process and the achievements made over the march of the auspicious Union? - Since foundation, United Arab Emirates has shown great interest in education. Education experienced great development in the era of the late founder of UAE, Sheikh Zayed Bin Sultan Al Nahyan, may Allah be merciful to him. This development is still continuous under the auspices and interest of His Highness Sheikh Khalifa bin Zayed Al Nahyan, President of State, may Allah protect him.
Academic and educational process witnessed qualitative and quantitative changes both at the level of development or the increase in the number of schools, teachers and students by virtue of the prudent leadership, that considers human development as the basic objective in the development strategies, and that education is the outcome of activation of these strategies. For many years, Federal and Local Governments have allocated great and increasing budgets in order to support education. Thus, we, in the UAE, are proud of all what has been achieved and what still being achieved as a result of the auspices of the wise leadership of His Highness Sheikh Khalifa bin Zayed Al Nahyan, President of the State, and the efforts of His Highness Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice President and Prime Minister and Ruler of Dubai, and the follow up their Highnesses Rulers of the Emirates. These achievements have been enhanced by the presence of increasing and successive numbers of graduates who have become a key tributary for supporting the economic and social development.
Principal Partner Education is the basis of building societies, and as a result of Your Highness's favor, Emirati women have got the chance of education equally as men. Because of that, women have become a source of many national achievements and have acquired their role in teaching generations. From the viewpoint of Your Highness, how far is women's actual participation with men in the formation of the future of society? - Government of the United Arab Emirates was keen to give prominent attention to women, allowing them to become major and principal partners in the march of the evolution and development of society. Women are now actually found in various fields in accordance with the development ideology pursued by the UAE with the aim of achieving sustainable human development.
UAE also tried to integrate the concept of gender equality and to promote women's position within the comprehensive development programs in the country. Women's issues have got great political and material interest and support at the highest official and civil levels- seven national mechanisms were allocated for the execution of strategies aimed at improving the status of women and children. In addition, the UAE has topped of Arab States in gender equality index issued by the World Economic Forum (WEF).
I am confident that the women were able to utilize all the available opportunities both at the level of general education and higher education, which contributed to making them gain advanced status in the labor market and decision-making centers; women are now working in all sectors.
We have worked for women, who in turn, reflected this concern and action, and proved their merit and capability in the utilization of education and training. They succeeded in changing a lot of social concepts, proving to the world their ability, success and excellence in work and participation at all levels.
Human Development By virtue of the interest and support of Your Highness, nowadays women are holding the highest positions which were confined to men such as membership of the Federal National Council and Ministries, has Her Highness Sheikha Fatima satisfied Her aspirations in the field of women's empowerment? - In the first place, I must thank Allah who gifted us our wise leadership, which has spared no effort to harness all the potential to make people of the UAE achieve development objectives. I believe that women have achieved the aspirations of the UAE; because we basically adopted the approach of human development and providing women with all their rights in education, culture and participation in political life. Women are part of this development, which all of us have struggled to achieve. I think that women have aptly proved their competence, whether in the membership of the Federal National Council, the Cabinet or in all other institutions.
Conservation of Family The Issues of women, childhood and family acquired special attention by Your Highness, Your Highness's support has exceeded the borders of the United Arab Emirates to the Arab and Islamic nations, how does Her Highness Sheikha Fatima foresight to the future of the Arab family in accordance with the cultural and social current facts? - The Arab family is facing many economic, social and cultural challenges and difficulties; and I attach great hopes and expectations that women are going to defeat these challenges. Educating and empowering women along with improving their capabilities and skills represent the corner stone in the development, protection in addition to supporting for security and stability of the family.
We all need to consolidate our work, and to exert a lot of efforts for the sake of conservation of the family. Families are the basic foundation of society, if they are good the whole society will be good. Thus I am sure that the woman who teaches and takes care of her children can utilize all the opportunities and the actual facts in order to strengthen her family's immunity to be able to overcome the challenges with determination and steadiness. As that, I assume that the future of the Arab family will be safe and encouraging to the preparation of promising generations that will be the supporters of the development process.
Uninterrupted Noble Deeds Your Highness conferred to establish and sponsor of the first women's association in the UAE, to establish a General Women's Union, and adopted many high quality initiatives and projects aimed at educating women, and raising society's awareness of their status and role, How do Your Highness see the role of society institutions, especially academic and media entities in the service of this target? - With the establishment of State of the Union, and since the foundation of these academic and media institutions and other service-providing institutions that have their continual positive role in the course of development march, with great efforts have emerged from the reality of development strategies developed by the Federal Government; since then we notice that these institutions play an effective role in the performance of the mission and vision of the government for the sake of upholding the people of the UAE. These institutions adopt and effective policy to bring about the permanent development. They develop action plans that are compatible with the needs and developments in each stage, not forgetting that they enhance their role by means of appointing the appropriate people, men or women, in the position of responsibility and leadership for the implementation of these strategies, plans and programs.
That is why these institutions are deemed to be integrated in the provision of services for citizens; they are also very effective in advancing the development and the raise of the UAE rank among nations.
Mission Performance Well-deserved for it, a lot of local, regional and international organizations and agencies competed to honor Your Highness on many occasions, what does this appreciation mean to Your Highness? - No matter how great prizes and awards, our major concern is that every citizen gets all the opportunities offered by the prudent leadership within the framework of strategies of comprehensive development, and to keep faithful our covenant with the march of the late Sheikh Zayed bin Sultan Al Nahyan, may Allah rest His soul in peace, that the citizen always "comes first as a main goal and major spring".
Our performance for this vision is the greatest award I receive ... May Allah bless the UAE and citizens of the UAE.
Constructive Efforts On the other hand, Your Highness personally sponsored, and launched several awards and prizes; as well, the UAE has become a concourse for many awards- some of them elevated to international standards, including the award Hamdan bin Rashid Al Maktoum Award for Distinguished Academic Performance, which is specialized in targeting improvement and excellence of education, how would (Mother of the Nation) rate Hamdan Award after 14 years of its launch? - At the beginning, I would like to appreciate His Highness Sheikh Hamdan bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Deputy Ruler of Dubai and Minister of Finance and Patron of the Award, in return of his most valuable efforts that lasted for decades, these efforts which were utilized by the people of the UAE in their good efforts, work and production.
The award comes as modest part of His Highness's constructive and supportive efforts in the process human development in the UAE. There is no doubt that Hamdan bin Rashid Al Maktoum Award for Distinguished Academic Performance has presented over 14 years a scientific approach towards the development of academic and educational process out of the belief of His Highness in the importance of education and knowledge role as an effective tool in the progress of economic and social development, especially as this award has included new groups of distinguished people in the educational and academic system in each cycle.
This renovation and development of Hamdan Award was also accompanied by the expansion of status and scope on the international level. Sheikh Hamdan bin Rashid Al Maktoum International Prize, which was announced in cooperation with UNESCO in 2009 under the name 'UNESCO-Hamdan Bin Al-Maktoum Prize for Outstanding Practice and Performance in Enhancing the Effectiveness of Teachers' is the best evidence of the deep development thought by which this award was founded, in addition to the dimension that is devoted towards quality and modernization. His Highness motivates individuals and institutions in the education system to contest in order to attain the desired excellence promoting the academic work to the best level.
Global Status the United Arab Emirates has witnessed innovative initiatives in various aspects of life; these initiatives have affected the economic, social and cultural life of the people of UAE. Moreover, This country has made many achievements in various spheres all over the world. What is the future vision of Your Highness in relation to education in the State as education is the basis of sustainable development in light of the growing interest of the political leadership? - I emphasize once again that the keenness of the wise leadership presided by His Highness Sheikh Khalifa bin Zayed Al Nahyan (may Allah protect him) that the UAE shall occupy the eminent scientific and global status that we deserve among countries of the world, by the hands Emiratis, women and men. This keenness is reflected in paying the greatest attention to education and acquiring knowledge and technology, and developing strategies and action plans in support of achieving this interest in the educational process.
In this sense, the institutions of general education along with the institutions of higher education and scientific research have the responsibility to pursue to create and prepare tomorrow men and women who will able to take the responsibilities in the society of the future.
I believe that this is our gateway to achieve the future vision of advanced education and scientific research. Once our policy of development is based on distinguished educational and academic system, plans of improvement of scientific research, and progress in the course of localization of technology; then, certainly, we will accomplish our vision, in which I see the right and best route in order to achieve real gains and sustainable development.
Finally, "Attamayuz News" editorial express their sincerest thanks and the deepest gratitude to Your Highness for granting us this exclusive honor, and for providing us with the chance to be acquainted with Your Highness's vision about the process of sustainable development in UAE. May Allah grant Your Highness long fruitful life to remain the supporter of the nation.