UAE is No. 1 in education

The UAE has been ranked first globally in three indexes related to the Sustainable Development Goal 4 of Quality Education.

The Sustainable Development Goal 4

According to several key international organisations in the field of competitiveness, the UAE maintained its leadership in these indexes since 2020.

The UAE has strengthened its efforts to achieve the Sustainable Development Goal 4, which is to guarantee inclusive and equitable quality education and promote lifelong learning opportunities for all, according to the Federal Competitiveness and Statistics Centre (FCSC).

The country clinched the top spot in the Primary Education Enrolment and Literacy Index in the Global Gender Gap Report published by the World Economic Forum, as well as first in terms of the flow of the international students index published by IMD.


State news agency Wam, in collaboration with the FCSC, is publishing a series of periodic reports highlighting the UAE’s progress in the 17 sustainable development goals set by the UN in 2015.

The country’s global leadership in the three indexes underscores the UAE’s keenness to ensure fair, quality and inclusive education, as it provides free education to all citizens in public schools.

Education is mandatory in the country for all individuals over the age of six until 12th grade, or until they are 18 years old.

Federal Law No. 3 for 2016 concerning children’s rights, also known as Wadeema’s Law, ensures the right of children to education, and Article No. 31 stipulates that “every child shall have the right to education and the state shall work on achieving equal opportunities for every child, according to the laws in force.”

The law prohibits children’s parents or guardians from not enrolling them in schools or stopping them from going to school during mandatory education periods.

In terms of the literacy index, the UAE has made significant progress in reducing illiteracy rates to below one per cent, and has promoted the principles of sustainable education in overall academic processes and practices.

On the net flow of international students index, the country’s higher education sector has maintained its international leadership in attracting non-citizen students, and has succeeded in establishing a distinguished universal higher education model over a short period of time. — Wam

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