‘Highly-qualified teacher but I’m ignored for jobs’
I’m a Filipina professional teacher and I’m writing this letter to be a voice for all teachers that were not treated fairly when it comes to recruitment. I have been teaching in Dubai in various nurseries and early learning centres for the past 14 years and spent all these years investing on my personal improvement and qualification in order to fit in UAE’s education sector. And this is the only time that I have found it hard to find a job because of my nationality, since I’m not a native English speaker. Before, I only suffered with much lesser pay compared with my European counterparts. I have nothing against teachers who are native speakers. Does being a native speaker constitute commitment, passion, dedication and genuine care for a child? Remember, little knowledge is dangerous. In other countries, they put emphasis in experience and qualifications. The younger the child, the higher should be the qualification. I hold a Bachelors Degree In Elementary Education, CACHE Level 3 (With A Grade) and International Pre-School Curriculum Qualification. Aside from these I am also a Musician. Play both keyboard and guitar and well verse in children’s music integral for Early Years settings. But I was always left behind, denied opportunities when it comes to recruitment because of stereotyping. BECAUSE BUSINESS DICTATES. This practice of recruiting in UAE is unfair to us who have the qualifications because of our Nationality and stereotyping. We are denied employment opportunities even if we have the necessary qualifications and experiences. Those who took the jobs intended for us sometimes don’t deserve to be a teacher. Unqualified, inexperienced. It’s only that they are native speakers. There are even ads that are every discouraging and racist that says: Only Europeans, Americans, New Zealand, South Africans are allowed to send their CVs. This practice should be discouraged. I hope this unfair practice will stop. It is very sad and frustrating that other nationalities are favoured compared to us, qualified even if they are under qualified and no experiences. I consider UAE to be my second home and I believe KHDA will grant us Filipino teachers equal employment opportunities in the Early Years Department of the Education sector. Frustrated Teacher Dubai So schools are two weeks into the new term. The kids are getting used to the routine again, just finding their feet in new schools, new classrooms, getting to know new teachers and making new friends. Then, oh hello, let’s stop all that now and have a week off. Now let’s get this clear: I am not, in any way, complaining at all about the holiday for Eid – of course it’s important. Eid Al Adha is an important date on the calendar – and one we can all enjoy and get involved in, regardless of faith. But my question is: is it really necessary to close the schools for a whole week, particularly as they’ve just gone back? One thing that gets me, why are schools classed as public sector – falling in line with government departments – and being ordered to close for a full week? About 90 per cent of schools in the UAE are private businesses, taking fees from parents – most of whom work in the private sector – and who won’t have for full week off, some probably won’t get any days off. It’s the assumption that everyone has pre-arranged childcare for the full week, super-nannys and maids at their beck and call. And what about the kids themselves? Back into structured learning, only to be taken out of it again straight away. Waving goodbye to all of their new buddies already. Isn’t one of the themes of the expo about learning and ‘creating minds’? Yes, it’s up to parents to make sure their child continues to learn while out of school – and I will make sure mine has set activities. The decision to close the schools for a week wasn’t just taken this week, it would have been in the planning. Wouldn’t it have been better for education authorities to have extended last term by three weeks and not had schools return until after Eid?