The Knowledge and Human Development Authority (KHDA) has set out to fully revolutionize our understanding, expectation and experience of education and learning, launching the unprecedented “Rahhal” project as its contribution towards the Dubai 10X Initiative – an ambitious venture overseen by the Dubai Future Foundation (DFF).
Rahhal is a flexible, accessible and sustainable model that harnesses all the knowledge, skills and experiences that the community has to offer and makes them available to any age. It recognizes all the learning that takes place, enabling learners to build upon their experiences and present those to employers as attested, official proof of their learning history.
His Highness Sheikh Hamdan bin Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Crown Prince of Dubai, Chairman of the Dubai Executive Council and Chairman of DFF’s Board of Trustees, launched the bold plan, among a bundle of avant-garde proposals for Dubai 10X at the 6th World Government Summit, held in Dubai in February 2018. The Dubai 10X initiative seeks to place Dubai Government entities 10 years ahead of the rest of the world in all sectors, propelling the emirate into the future by implementing today what other cities around the world will be implementing 10 years from now.
H.H. Sheikh Hamdan adopted 26 projects presented by 24 government departments. The shortlisted projects were evaluated by a panel of experts out of a total of more than 160 ideas submitted by 36 parties in less than 365 days.
His Excellency Dr Abdulla Al Karam, Chairman of the Board of Directors and KHDA Director General, said: “The 10X Initiative, the Dubai Future Foundation, and Dubai’s leadership have inspired us to disrupt how we think and how we work, which in turn will bring more meaningful learning and life opportunities to every part of our community. At the Knowledge and Human Development Authority, we were able to simultaneously take part in the Dubai 10X initiative, all the while disrupting our own policies and regulations on an organizational level, and making positive changes to how we approach our work as individuals.”
“We’re now putting the prototypes and processes in place to pilot the program by September 2018, this in consideration with the beginning of the 2018/19 academic year,” H.E. Al Karam revealed. “In May 2019, we’re going to bring our partners and stakeholders together to review what went well and what could have gone better. At that point, we’ll be ready to put together future recommendations and roll out Rahhal to all residents in Dubai.”
Rahhal provides an alternative approach to education through a framework that can be customized to the needs of each specific learner. Learning content will come organically from the community – private sector organizations, volunteering groups, community groups, and more – and will be supported by employers, to ensure that what learners are learning is also what they’ll be doing, using and being as they progress in their lives.
Through Rahhal, students who wish to study part-time at mainstream school and part-time elsewhere in the community will be able to do so; those who prefer to study at two, three or even four different schools will also be able to. Older children who wish to learn “on the job” – whether one job or six jobs – will have that option available to them. Parents who prefer to educate their children at home, or within their own community, will be free to do so. Adults who wish to continue learning can design their own programs, according to their needs and schedules.
“The wonderful aspect of Rahhal is that is has been inspired by our partners in the community, who we consulted during the ideation phase and who we continue to consult while implementing the initiative,” H.E. Al Karam said. “Our partners include parents of neuro-typical students, gifted and talented students and ‘students of determination’, parents who homeschool their children, education consultants, policy think-tanks, private-sector organizations and other employers, universities, local government bodies, school principals and teachers, qualification and certification organizations, and of course, students.”
For his part, DFF’s CEO H.E. Khalfan Belhoul, said: “The Dubai 10X Initiative marks a turning point in the way strategic sectors operate – those sectors that are most relevant to the lives of individuals – it also helps proactively anticipate and shape the future of these sectors. The development of the education sector is a key factor in stimulating and preparing individuals to keep pace with the rapid changes taking place around the world, as well as with the one-of-a-kind innovations that Dubai offers the world through the Dubai 10X Initiative.”
Overseen by the Dubai Future Foundation (DFF), the Dubai 10X Initiative seeks to place Dubai Government entities 10 years ahead of the rest of the world in all sectors, propelling the emirate into the future by implementing today what other cities around the world will be implementing 10 years from now – all under the leadership of H.H. Sheikh Hamdan bin Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Crown Prince of Dubai, Chairman of the Dubai Executive Council and Chairman of DFF’s Board of Trustees, and H.H. Sheikh Maktoum bin Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Deputy Ruler of Dubai.
Government bodies across all sectors are joining in the effort to implement their projects in collaboration with innovative tech companies, heeding the directives of H.H. Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice President and Prime Minister of the UAE, Ruler of Dubai, who called on all government entities in Dubai to embrace today what other cities will be implementing 10 years from now, as he launched the Dubai 10X Initiative for the first time during the 5th annual World Government Summit in 2017.