TELLAL Students Top the UAE’s Teacher Competence Pilot

Thirty TELLAL students were among the first ever educators to be awarded provisional Teacher Competence at a graduation ceremony in Academic City on 5 June, 2017.

The TELLAL cohort was part of a pilot scheme organised by Dubai’s KHDA to trial the UAE Teacher and Educational Leadership Standards (TELS UAE) test and teacher competence process in preparation for the expected country-wide roll-out of the regulatory scheme from September 2017.

The 34 candidates who took part in the trial from TELLAL were all trainee teachers on the Teach Best Apprenticeship in Teaching Practice. Since last August, they have been teaching, studying and learning on-the-job as part of TELLAL’s immersive, schools-based initial teacher training programme. As part of their comprehensive course of study, the students received exam preparation for the TELS UAE exam.

In order to receive the full Teacher Competence and “Competent Teacher Status”, candidates must pass the TELS UAE exam, give proof of completing a teaching preparation course and submit a portfolio of evidence to demonstrate attainment of the required standards set by the KHDA. Having passed the exam and submitted their portfolios, the successful TELLAL candidates were awarded the provisional teaching competence and will receive their full teaching competence once they graduate from the TELLAL teacher training programme later this summer.

While the pass rate across all students in the pilot was modest at 48%, TELLAL teachers outperformed with an impressive 88% of students passing the exam.

“We are very proud of our trainees, and with our overall pass rate,” said Raquel Nahas, Manager of Teaching Training at TELLAL. “Those whom have not passed all components of the exam, have been successful in some of the required standards. We are confident that they will pass the exam on their second try.”

Among TELLAL’s newly certified teachers, and receiving some of the highest scores in the pilot, were Irina Moores, a teacher trainee at GEMS International School and GEMS Wellington Academy – Al Khail, and Nikita Delpeche, a Teaching Assistant from GEMS Bradenton Preparatory Academy. Their high pass rates are a testament to the rigorous training that they received through TELLAL.

The TELS UAE exam and Teacher Competence are expected to be rolled out in Dubai over the next five years, starting with the next group of candidates in September. Speaking at the graduation ceremony, Dr Naji Al Mahdi, Chief of Qualifications and Awards at KHDA, stated that the pilot had been a valuable learning experience for all involved. Raquel Nahas added,

“The process is still evolving and we are excited to be a part of the growth of the TELS UAE. There are benefits for our students in the pilot too — it sets them up to be leaders in this process even though they are newly qualified teachers.”

The KHDA aims to have all 20,000 teachers in Dubai registered by 2021 to meet the national agenda set by the UAE Vision 2021.  TELLAL will play a key role in delivering teacher training and TELS UAE exam preparation to the country’s teaching community.

Read more about TELLAL’s UAE Teacher Certification Centre.

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