In February 2012, Abu Dhabi Education Council (ADEC) announced the launching of “Irtiqa’a” program to assure the quality of education in public and private schools in Emirate of Abu Dhabi.

The program aims to meet the highest international performance standards. It comes in line with ADEC’s vision calling for high quality education in all schools and for all students.

The program aims to meet the highest international performance standards.

The “Irtiqa’a” program, launched across the Emirate of Abu Dhabi, it’s designed to identify quality levels of school performance, provide necessary support in order to help achieve the highest standards, encourage the implementation of best practice in education and exchange professional expertise.

“Irtiqa’a” program sends a clear message that ADEC is willing to provide a world-class comprehensive educational assessment framework.

“Irtiqa’a will help enhance the performance level of schools by creating a competitive environment, increasing awareness among educators on the importance of quality performance in education and providing inspection tools and established standards.

Moreover, it will enable school administrations to explore the best international practices in education, assess school performance using a standardized grading system.

 About Irtiqa’a

“For High-Quality Education”

The Vision

To apply a world-class and comprehensive evaluation system in order to measure quality in education and thereby to support school improvements so that all schools in the Emirate of Abu Dhabi compare well with international standards.

The Mission

To improve the quality and effectiveness of schools in the Emirate of Abu Dhabi so as to realise the strategic goals of Abu Dhabi Education Council and thereby to bring schools into line with the best international practices whilst promoting quality and excellence both regionally and internationally.

The Core Values

  • Unrelenting commitment to high quality and continuing improvement
  • Transparency and integrity
  • Co-operation and partnership

The Objectives

  • To identify levels of performance quality in schools within the Emirate of Abu Dhabi
  • To provide schools with clear recommendations for improvement
  • To inform policy-making at sector level
  • To encourage the sharing of best practice in education and the exchange of professional expertise

(Iqra’a) Award

The Irtiqaa programme will give the high-performing schools the (Iqra’a) award. It will allow qualifying schools to apply for ADEC accreditation, which entitles them to get special privileges.

 Who benefits from Irtiqa’a?

ADEC oversees a comprehensive inspection and school improvement programme – Irtiqa’a-  that aims to stimulate and support continuous improvement in each school in order to maximize students’ wellbeing and achievement.

Irtiqa’a Inspection is designed to act as a support and a resource for school leaders.

Each school is required to undertake a process of self evaluation to identify what it does well and what it can do to improve.

Inspection teams, consisting of independent and highly experienced inspectors, periodically review the quality and performance of each school and evaluate the effectiveness of its self evaluation.

Inspectors work professionally with the schools and take account of the views of parents and students when arriving at their judgements.

They spend approximately one week in each school and measure its overall effectiveness against its self evaluation and the Performance Standards identified in the Framework for Inspection.

These Performance Standards are:

student achievement and progress; personal development of students; teaching quality; curriculum; the protection, care, guidance and support of students; quality of accommodation and buildings; school resources; and the leadership and management of the school.

Each standard is judged against detailed criteria based on best international practice.

Results are shared and discussed with each school and recommendations are made to help it to develop effective improvement plans.

Irtiqa’a Inspection is designed to act as a support and a resource for school leaders.

Results are shared and discussed with each school and recommendations are made to help it to develop effective improvement plans.

After the inspection the school also receives a Report that explains in detail what its strengths and areas for improvement are.

Inspection also provides parents with an objective evaluation of each school’s performance so they can make sensible decisions concerning their children’s education. To help in this, ADEC plans to make it possible for parents to download from this website Summary Reports for each school inspected.

Inspections provide ADEC with invaluable information on the effectiveness of the education system in the Emirate of Abu Dhabi. This information enables ADEC to develop evidence based policies and programmes designed to further improve the quality and effectiveness of the system as a whole.

 Irtiqa’a Framework

How do we do it?

The majority of schools are inspected by a team of international experts once every two years. During this time inspectors make judgments on a school’s performance across eight areas or ‘Performance Standards’:

  • School standards and progress
  • Student’s personal development
  • Quality of teaching
  • Meeting of students needs through appropriate curriculum
  • Protection, care, guidance, and support of the students
  • Quality of school buildings and premises
  • Usage of resources to support school aims
  • Effectiveness of leadership and management

In between inspection events, schools are expected to perform their own self evaluation using the same standards and best practice criteria. This self- evaluation is an important management tool that works in tandem with inspection to help identify improvement targets and set appropriate objectives for the School Improvement Plan.

An important feature of the work of ADEC’s Inspection & Monitoring Division is to quality assure the work of the contracted teams of inspectors. In pursuit of this function they monitor:

  • the quality of the relationship between inspectors and the school
  • the consistency and accuracy of the inspection reports
  • the quality and coverage of the inspection evidence trail on which reports are based

 How are reports written and received

Inspectors produce two reports:

  • A Summary Report which is a concise document which describes the school’s most significant strengths and weaknesses across the inspection standards and identifies what the school needs to do to improve further.
  • A technical report which provides detailed assessment and grades for each Performance Standard.

The recommendations for improvement in the Summary Report and the detailed Technical Evaluation provide invaluable guidance for the school on the content and focus of its School Improvement Plan.

How does inspection improve education standards?

For educators inspection:

  • motivates principals and teachers to raise their standards by providing them with a professional structure within which to progress towards excellence.
  • requires that the teaching methods used by teachers are in line with best practice.

For students inspection:

  • exists to drive up standards and so equip learners with the skills to match their goals and ambitions.
  • assesses and promotes student well-being and a safe school environment.
  • promotes effective learning and progress for all students so that their capabilities are developed, and their talents are given scope to flourish.

For parents inspection:

  • safeguards the quality of a child’s learning experience.
  • ensures that every child receives a high quality education that meets parental aspirations.
  • guarantees that the time a child spends in school is happy, safe and productive.

For Abu Dhabi Education Council, inspection safeguards children by helping to inform and shape education policy as the Emirate works towards its ambitious improvement agenda set out in the Abu Dhabi 2030 vision document.

 Irtiqa’a Team

In line with the Abu Dhabi Vision 2030 and in a bid to develop the potential & competitive capabilities of UAE nationals (whose knowledge and developing skills are seen as the backbone of the national economy), ADEC’s is determined to drive forward the development of the educational competencies of national teachers to assist them in playing outstanding roles in the task of assuring quality in education & improved performance.

Therefore, the Irtiqaa programme has undertaken the task of training UAE national educationalists to enable them to join future school inspection teams & to fulfill their duties to the nation effectively, competently & with a strong sense of integrity.

The Irtiqaa program shall develop potentials of the national education cadre & encourage them explore modern international practices in education. Objectives include:

  • Provide trainees with effective techniques, traits of influential personality & assesment skills that they need,
  • Foundation of a solid basis of knowledge based on the best international practices pertaining to evaluation of schools through workshops, evaluation-related conferences & visiting high performing schools,
  • Enable trainees to develop & build a complete set of competencies & skills,
  • Assist trainees assume leadership roles in the future through participating in evaluation works of schools working within the Abu Dhabi emirate.
  • Provide trainees with professional self-development plan that shall assist them succeed in their ADEC-related missions; a success that shall render a group of trainees fully aware of nature of their association with the evaluation process & therefore fully capable as well of implementing their acquired-to-be skills & knowledge; and
  • Conferring Accredited Assessor Certificates on all national trainees.

 Initial selection criteria for trainees

  1. Holds a bachelor's degree or equivalent.
  2. Holds a qualification in one of the internationally recognized English language Tests:
    • IELTS : 6.0 and above
    • TOEFL
    • TOEFL paper based: 550 and above
    • TOEFL computer based test: 213 and above
    • TOEFL internet based: 79 and above
  3. Education experience (titles include school principal, assistant-principal, specialist in subject support, or teacher)
    • At least 5 years of experience.
    • Experienced in one subject or more, or/and curriculum expert.
  4. Experience in high quality assessment.
    • Previously worked in fields of teaching / classes control & assessment.
    • Has analysis & assessment skills.
  5. Understanding of school effectiveness.
    • Knowledgeable about the best international practices pertaining to school effectiveness.
  6. Well informed in IT & communication skills.
  7. Familiar with school performance improvement processes
    • Experienced in drafting school performance improvement plans, or in performance improvement plans control.
  8. Other
    • Decision-maker.
    • Cooperative & team worker
    • Achieved good performance evaluation in the previous two years

 Irtiqa’a training for Emirati nationals

Abu Dhabi Education Council invites applications from Emirati nationals wishing to become part of the Irtiqa’a initiative.

Irtiqa’a is the school improvement programme which uses world-class evaluation systems to guide government and private schools on their journey towards outstanding achievement in line with the aspirations of Abu Dhabi’s 2030 vision.

In line with its education reform and Emiritization agendas, ADEC is now seeking a further cohort of local educational leaders and exceptional teachers to:

  • Train to become school inspectors in the Emirate of Abu Dhabi
  • Acquire accreditation in inspection skills
  • Work towards a prestigious, internationally recognized, qualification (up to M.A.) in school inspection.
Irtiqa’a is the school improvement programme

Once licensed by ADEC, trainees will be qualified to work with ADEC’s partner organisations as inspection team members on our expanding school evaluation programme.

This is exciting and important work for the future of Abu Dhabi’s entire school system and we want to recruit our most effective local principals, school leaders and classroom teachers to contribute their experience and ability to this important initiative.

How to apply to become a trainee

To find out more about the application process and the requirements for candidates click Here and select ‘Initial selection criteria for trainees.’

Please note that the ADEC School Inspection Programme is conducted in Arabic and English and the selection criteria requires a high level of competence in English.

For this reason an essential part of the selection procedure is to submit the application, c.v. and candidate supporting statement in English. Applications who fail to meet this requirement cannot be considered. (Note that supporting statements from principals required for those applicants who are not currently principals themselves may be in Arabic)

To submit an application go to

Please note that the last date for submitting applications is Wednesday 3rd of February 2014

 Irtiqaa Inspection Reports

The school reports published on this website provide a review of the performance of each private school in the Emirate of Abu Dhabi. These reports are shared with schools to inform their development plans.

These reports present the outcomes of the inspection visits conducted during the Academic years 2011/12 and 2012/13. Each report was written based on evidences collected on eight performance standards during the inspection visit. These standards are:

  • Performance Standard 1: Students’ attainment and progress
  • Performance Standard 2: Students’ personal development
  • Performance Standard 3: The quality of teaching and learning
  • Performance Standard 4: The meeting of students’ needs through the curriculum
  • Performance Standard 5: The protection, care, guidance and support of students
  • Performance Standard 6: The quality of the school’s buildings and premises
  • Performance Standard 7: The school’s resources to support its aims
  • Performance Standard 8: The effectiveness of leadership and management

Inspectors use an eight-point scale when judging quality in each of the Performance Standards.

1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8
Outstanding Very Good Good Satisfactory
and Improving
Satisfactory Unsatisfactory Very

In the inspection Summary Report that goes to schools, the grades are banded together as below:

Band A High performing Overall Effectiveness grade 3 or above
Band B Satisfactory Overall Effectiveness grade 4 or 5
Band C In need of significant improvement Overall Effectiveness grade below 5

For Villa schools

Guideline for parents on how to read the reports

Private Schools inspection reports

 Contact us


Twitter: @ADEC_Irtiqaa

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