The Ministry of Education in the UAE has extended the deadline for receiving applications to government higher education institutions and external scholarships for the 2020-2021 semester from April 30 to May 16, 2020.
This move was to safeguard the future of Grade 12 students and guarantee their right to higher education, official news agency WAM reported.
The ministry began the application process on November 10, 2019, for Grade 12 students who were UAE citizens or the children of female citizens wishing to enrol in higher education institutions affiliated with the unified registration system.
These include UAE University, Zayed University, the Higher Colleges of Technology, Khalifa University, Abu Dhabi Polytechnic, the Fatima College of Health Sciences, the Abu Dhabi Institute for Vocational Education and Training, Mohammed V University and Sorbonne University Abu Dhabi.
Dr. Ahmed bin Abdullah Humaid Belhoul Al Falasi, Minister of State for Higher Education and Advanced Skills, stated that the ministry is keen to assist students to join higher education institutions for the next academic year, despite the current situation.
Dr. Mohammed Ibrahim Al Mualla, under-secretary of the Ministry of Education for Academic Affairs, stated that the ministry’s decision to extend the deadline was made after it noted the low enrolment rates of male students expected to graduate from high school this year, which are less than 50 per cent in some schools.
“It is important for all students, especially male students, to register before the deadline because it will give them the opportunity to complete the required procedures and receive a university offer for the subject they wish to study before joining the national service. Their places will be reserved even until after the end of their national service,” he said.
Last year, the ministry received applications for 19,796 registrations, including 14,809 students who met the admission criteria and were distributed as follow: 2,740 in UAE University, 2,034 in Zayed University, 8,211 in Higher Colleges of Technology, 648 in Khalifa University, 726 in Abu Dhabi Vocational Education and Training Institute, 296 in Fatima College of Health Sciences, 82 in Abu Dhabi Polytechnic, 59 in Mohammed V University, 81 in Sorbonne University Abu Dhabi and 202 overseas scholarships.
On March 30, the UAE government extended the e-learning programme in all educational facilities across the country until the end of the academic year in June.
The UAE had already closed all public and private schools, universities and nurseries across the country for four weeks starting from March 8 as a precautionary measure against the Covid-19 pandemic.
Since the outbreak, the UAE has reported a total of 15,738 Covid-19 cases and 157 deaths.