It is with great pleasure and honor that I warmly welcome you all to our Al Ittihad Family. Equally, it is with great pleasure that I address you as your Director General and extend to you my thanks for your warm welcome of me.
It is my intention to dedicate myself to my work in the service of our Al Ittihad Community, and in service, I build upon and indeed honor, the wonderful contribution and service of Ms. Amna Mohamad Rafi.
We at IPS Mamzar are a Professional Learning Community and, as such we live by its underpinning philosophy… a child centered approach through, collaboration and action research, resulting in meaningful impacts to learning and teaching.
Therefore, as a school, we focus on the following:
● We accept learning as the fundamental purpose of our school and therefore are willing to examine all practices in light of their impact on learning.
● We are committed to working together to achieve our collective purpose. We continue to cultivate a collaborative culture through development of high performing teams.
● We assess our effectiveness on the basis of results rather than intentions. Individuals, teams, and schools seek relevant data and information and use that information to promote continuous improvement.
In so doing our teachers work together in collaborative teams to:
● reinforce the understanding of the impact of Islamic values on the everyday life and culture of the UAE and different cultures.
● Clarify what students must learn.
● Gather and analyse evidence of students learning, and therefore identify the most powerful teaching strategies.
We strive to attain these aims in order to ensure that the most positive religious, social emotional and academic outcomes are achieved.
With the support of all members of our learning community we are certain that we will continue to provide an environment that meets the needs of all our students and prepares them for future opportunities.
A child centered approach to learning means that, with love in our hearts, we strive to:
● Know our children and thus develop their learning based upon what we know,
● Provide an environment and experiences that lead to deeper learning
● See through the eyes of our students, feel with their minds and think what a child would think.
● Educate in developmentally appropriate ways … in order to grow the whole person.
● Be guides, mentors and exemplars.
This is what child centeredness looks like in our school. Expert teachers, caring adults.
However, we cannot do this alone. As family, as community, your input and participation is crucial to the success of our children. There is a Latin phrase, In loco parentis, that is, in place of parents. And indeed, we are, in loco parentis, we are in your place as we are privileged to care for your children, however, we may be in place of parents…but!, we do not replace parents.
Our work cannot be completed without our partnership… a true and lasting partnership based on mutual trust and mutual respect.
Finally, as we prepare our children to participate in an ever increasingly complex world, with an education that is both local and global, we never forget that:
Islam nourishes our lives and we bear witness to and celebrate our Emirati Culture … these self-evident truths define who we are.
I am reminded of a phrase from my favorite contemporary poet, David Whyte:
Above the mountains the geese turn into the light again, painting their black silhouettes on an open sky. Sometimes everything has to be inscribed across the heavens, so you can find the one line already written inside you …
May we help all of our children find that one line written inside of them … that unique spark that defines who they are.
The biggest honor however, and the biggest burden, a burden that I, we all happily bear… is the trust that you have placed in us… by entrusting your children, our students ... to our care.
We strive to bear witness to the message of the Prophet, peace be upon him, that we all may perform our duties as educators with love and care, in order that we may master our work.
Our children deserve nothing less…
Massimiliano Caruso M.Ed