Schools must teach social, emotional intelligence to children

Dubai/Abu Dhabi: Schools in the UAE and elsewhere are increasingly expected by parents and authorities to develop children’s social or “emotional intelligence”, above and beyond traditional academics.

Education officials in Dubai and Abu Dhabi, for example, take student “wellbeing” into consideration during school inspections, not just their performance in class. Also, the UAE has introduced ‘Moral Education’ as a compulsory subject in all schools.

As part of their studies, students have to learn values such as empathy – taught through a community outreach programme to a local charity or hospital, a project to carry forward a good deed at school or home, etc.

Universities and employers also look at candidates “soft skills” that demonstrate he or she can work with and lead people of diverse backgrounds.

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