x Abu Dhabi, UAEFriday 21 July 2017

Trust local teachers, not foreign experts

The first question that needs to be asked is: What does the UAE want its students to know and be able to do when they graduate?

"Beware dubious consultants" responded one letter writer to the article Schools to get US stamp of approval (March 4) and that reader is correct. I am an American and taught in the US public school system for 11 years. The public school system in the US is not one that anyone should want to emulate. Not only is it in sorry shape, but it certainly would not do well in the UAE. Granted there is much to be done with the schools here, but adopting another country's ideas is not the way to fix it. The first question that needs to be asked is: What does the UAE want its students to know and be able to do when they graduate? Only once that is established can any other decisions about curriculum and the like be made. The answer to that question is going to be different from any of the 50 US states; so why look to them? It's also time the authorities went to the people who know what goes on in a school best, who knows what the students are like best, and that is the teachers. They can give someone more insight than any "expert" from the US. Arbitrarily grasping at other "programmes" is not the answer. Name withheld on request

With reference to Health chiefs call for Emirati nurses (March 8): it is good that the nation is encouraging Emiratis to embark on a nursing career. Honestly, it is a tough sell to a nation where the stigma of nurses equated to housemaids is very alive. I hold a certain reverence for these unsung heroes and heroines who are the backbone of any hospital or medical facility that they work in. To deal with the sick, scared, confused and needy is a mammoth task and I am sure the immense stress when dealing with medical situations cannot be measured. This age-old profession should be highlighted in all its positivity. SS Uma, Abu Dhabi

In reference to the article Property law gives new power to landlords (March 11), Ziad Q is absolutely correct in his letter (Two reactions to Abu Dhabi property law, March 12): "let the market regulate itself". Consumer behaviour is what controls the laws of economics. The law of supply and demand provides that "if the prices are high, alternatives are sought"; "if the supply is high, the prices are low". The country should employ economic laws before it's too late. Suta De Bastos, Dubai

I agree with Ziad Q in his letter. The property market will eventually regulate itself. However, this will come after many families will have to leave, making Abu Dhabi a city for singles. The demography of the capital will be heavily affected for a year or two until the landlords find out that there aren't really enough tenants who are willing to pay ridiculous prices like Dh120,000 for a one-bedroom apartment.

I expect that in November when the law is implemented many people will become homeless and they will start looking either to send their families away or try to relocate outside the city or even move back home. I am thinking of moving as a solution. I am also living in an old rental apartment. I pay Dh30,000 for an apartment that could be rented for Dh110,000. My option is to relocate to another city and I am starting to look now. Sanfor Shankool, Abu Dhabi

What Ziad Q says makes zero sense. How could these new regulations be beneficial to anyone? It's true that some people are living in very posh flats paying little money. Good for them! They've been here for a long time, so let them enjoy it. By the way, it is companies who are paying at the end of the day, and for many companies here, money is no object. I think that's part of the problem. Big oil and gas companies throw ridiculous amounts of money around for housing, so of course owners are going to take whatever they can get. We had all be doing the same thing, I'm sure. However, there needs to be stronger regulations when it comes to rental properties. It's out of control. Chris M, Abu Dhabi

I believe this is quite unjust, especially for a country that is dependent on foreign labour and a specialised workforce. If I am to live with the ticking note in my head that the landlord has the right to evict me and my family at any point, and for no justified reason, I do not really think I would be able to work efficiently. I would have to continuously seek alternative "backup" lodging, just in case the landlord whimsically decides to evict me Alia Bader, Abu Dhabi

I refer to Slower taxis offer a safer ride, say passengers (March 7). If taxi drivers say that their reduced speed is a problem for their passengers, then let them prove it with numbers. Keep a record of how many passengers they have in a day and how many complain. I'm sure the number of complaints is negligible. The roads are safer for it. Donald Glass, Abu Dhabi Send letters to the editor to PO Box 111434, Abu Dhabi, UAE. Or e-mail them to letters@thenational.ae. Please include a day time phone number where you can be reached. Letters may be edited for length and clarity.