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‘Education Law’ to stress on values
December 4, 2013 | 12:00 AM
"We have our own culture, values and traditions. We are always giving boxed knowledge in colleges in fancy and glossy shape. We are told that this will fix our system. Instead, we need an Omani model of education" Al Khattab Ghalib Al Hinai, said Chairman of the Education Committee of the State Council
 
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The framework for an 'Education Law' has been submitted to ministries and the Education Council. A strategic plan on education is now on the anvil

Muscat: Ministries and various government departments of Oman are pondering over the framework for a proposed 'Education Law', presented by the education committee of the State Council.

The law is expected to give the system a direction and decide the obligations, rights and duties of all those who are involved in the education sector.

Talking to the Times of Oman, Dr Al Khattab Ghalib Al Hinai, chairman of the Education committee at the State Council, said: "We are working closely with all the ministries and the Education Council. We have submitted a framework for Education Law in Oman. We do not have Education Law till now. The process is starting."



Al Hinai added, "We are asking the Education Council to prepare a strategic plan for education in Oman. We are working for restructuring of the curriculum and a committee is working on it. We are proposing tracks for traditional and vocational education. We need to decide whether we should have two tracks or just one track for higher education."

He said the law would determine what kind of education should be obligatory and till what age. This would help decide budget and funding issues. Similarly, the responsibility of the teachers, their powers, responsibilities and duties would be decided, he said.

Al Hinai also said that the funding of the education would be a major challenge in the post-oil
and gas era.

"It is very important at this stage to decide how we are going to fund education in the future. At the same time, we have to take cognizance of the plight of pre-school education," he noted.

On the challenges of development of educational system in Oman, Al Hinai said, "The best practices worldwide in the field of education should be followed but we need to test these for Oman. We have our own culture, values and traditions. We are always giving boxed knowledge in colleges in fancy and glossy shape. We are told that this will fix our system. Instead, we need an Omani model of education."

He added: "We have to develop a system which links with our Omani culture. We have discipline, capability of risk taking, people sailing, interacting with various cultures and societies. We need to develop our own model of education. This is the biggest challenge before us. I want more open debate on it with all the stakeholders."

Dr Al Hinai was participating in a panel discussion along with Her Highness Dr Sayyida Mona Al Said, assistant vice chancellor of the Sultan Qaboos University, Annalee Babb of ACB Knowledge Consultants, Barbados, Nick Owen of Aspire Trust, Raheel Mohammed of Maslaha, and Louise Pulford of Social Innovation Exchange of the UK.

Competitiveness Forum
The discussion was part of the four-day Oman Competitiveness Forum which will conclude today.

The Oman Competitiveness Forum is being hosted by the Public Authority for Investment Promotion and Export Development. It is discussing Oman's need to be more competitive in the wake of emerging economic situation in the world, particularly the importance of national identity and vision, enterprise, education, growth, sustainability and technology.

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