HAIL – The Ministry of Labor has decided to reconsider whether the Nitaqat program should be applied to private schools, according to Omar Al-Amer, chairman of the private education committee at the Hail Chamber of Commerce and Industry.
Al-Amer was quoted in a section of the Arabic press as saying that the Ministry of Labor has “asked the private education committee to discuss the program and approve it as it sees fit”.
Earlier this month, private schools demanded that they be exempted from the Nitaqat Program or have staff provided for them.
A total of 1,000 private schools reportedly fell into the Nitaqat red zone after losing scores of Saudi teachers to government schools last year.
According to the Council of Saudi Chambers there are two main problems facing private schools. Firstly, 70,000 Saudi male and female teachers have left private schools for public educational institutions. Secondly, the Ministry of Labor issued orders which required girls’ and boys’ private schools to have separate business registration certificates, which meant these schools could not benefit from having a joint Saudization percentage.
Al-Amer said the committee took a number of decisions after its meeting including calling for the Human Resources Development Fund to be the basic resource for employing job applicants.
Private schools should have the same contracts for Saudis teaching in remote areas so that they do not leave for better prospects elsewhere.
In addition, schools must not sign a contract with a job applicant, whether Saudi or non-Saudi, unless the applicant has passed the Qiyas test of the National Center for Assessment in Higher Education.
The committee also called on standards to be set so that only excellent teachers are recruited. – SG