The value of education is priceless, and lessons learnt in the formative years last a lifetime, providing the basis for future careers, professional and personal development, values and outlooks, the Gulf News said in an editorial on Saturday.
"Indeed, we can all remember our time spent at desks, in classrooms full of joy and learning, at schools where friendships were made in what are considered to be the best times of our life. And for teachers too, there was a joy and professionalism that made the education process and the imparting of knowledge a wondrous thing. And we all too have memories of teachers who made a difference, influenced our lives and set us on the path that has brought us where we are today.
"But education too is a very serious matter, ensuring that the curriculum remains updated, that values are maintained, standards raised. And for those involved in the teaching profession, there is a need too to ensure that the skill sets remain relevant, professional and of the highest standard," the English language daily added.
The paper went on to say that for teachers at high school level, there is a particular need to ensure that their abilities are top notch, and that the methodology of their work in the classrooms of this nation are of a level that befits and reflects the importance of the role of educators. "A teacher holds a position of great importance, influence and sensitivity, one that must meet the highest standards as set by the Ministry of Education. And in the UAE, with so many different curricula being followed, reflecting the demographic nature of our multicultural society, the Ministry of Education is tasked with ensuring that the standards of learning in all schools reflect the importance and ideals of the government," it continued.
"Beginning next month, with a first round of testing, more than 5,000 high-school teachers will be licensed by the Ministry of Education. Another round of testing will follow in September, and it is the intent that educators at every level will eventually be licensed by the Ministry of Education.
"This is a progressive and forward-thinking decision, one that will ensure the minds of our children will be enlightened by teaching professionals who have met the rigorous standards required for their work. Just as we would expect all of our lawyers to be of a high enough standing to represent us in legal matters, or all out doctors to be licensed to look after our physical well-being, so too should teachers be required to be of a standard to educate and enlighten our children," the Dubai-based daily concluded.