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Tom-Kohler Cadmore’s 27-ball fifty sealsmassivewin for Deccan Gladiators over New York Striker

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Deccan Gladiators continued their winning run over New York Strikers in the glitzy opening encounter of the 7th edition of Abu Dhabi T10. The night saw enthralling dance performances along with a glamourous fashion show, along with a memorable performance from Tom Kohler-Cadmore, who smashed an unbeaten 68 off 33 balls to help the defending Champions to their first win to kick off the season.

An exciting buzz engulfed the Sheikh Zayed Stadium as the Gladiators stepped out to bat on a pristine surface, covered with a nice patch of grass. The cool winds in the city only made the conditions perfect for cricket. Shaji Ul Mulk, Chairman, T10 Sports Management, declared the tournament open with a motivating speech and the action began in Abu Dhabi. Pollard-led New York Strikers strategically opted to bowl first.

Unleashing Mohammad Amir to use the swing offered by the surface, the Strikers shackled the openers Nicholas Pooran and Kohler-Cadmore. Pooran’s early dismissal by pacer Muhammad Jawadullah made things trickier for the Champions. With runs hard to come by, pressure built on Gladiators that led to Andre Fletcher getting run out after a horrible mix-up.

The dynamic Andre Russell began counter-attacking with innovative shots. But a failed big hit from the power-hitter on Ali Khan’s off-cutter landed straight in Pollard’s hands. Not letting the momentum slip away, Kohler-Cadmore struck Sunil Narine for two sixes in the next over. Chamika Karunaratne handed a double whammy to Gladiators on consecutive deliveries, but Kohler-Cadmore waged a lone battle, and hamered a 27-ball fifty. The England batter’s brave innings led Gladiators to 118/8 in 10 overs.

As Strikers began their chase, left-arm speedster Trent Boult handed Deccan Gladiators their first blow, dismissing the dangerous Rahmanullah Gurbaz. Kusal Perera tried to counter-attack after the dismissal, but fast bowler Zahoor Khan picked his wicket to put his side in control. As the Gladiators missed three simple catches in the first couple of overs, the momentum slipped away.

The defending Champions brought in substitute Nuwan Thushara to replace Kohler-Cadmore under Impact Player rule. As per the rule, Thushara was allowed to bowl, but the right-arm speedster was struck for boundaries by Muhammad Waseem. His fiery innings came to an end in the next over by Luke Wood with Imad Wasim finally catching one. As Asif Ali held one end, skipper Kieron Pollard stepped out to provide some momentum in the steep run-chase. With 36 needed off the final 2 overs, Ali and Pollard were dismissed in quick succession. Gladiators sealed the win by 22 runs.

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UAE cuts Friday sermon to 10 minutes until end of summer

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The General Authority of Islamic Affairs and Endowments said that the decision is aimed at ensuring the safety of worshippers during the summer months.The directive is applicable from Friday, June 28, until the start of October.

According to the UAE’s National Center of Meteorology, summer temperatures in the Gulf country frequently exceed 40 degrees Celsius (104 Fahrenheit), with some areas experiencing highs of up to 50 C (122 F).

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No KHDA inspection for Dubai school next year: Would it impact rating and fees?

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Private schools in Dubai will not be subject to comprehensive inspections throughout the 2024-25 academic year, as per a new directive from the Knowledge and Human Development Authority (KHDA). The only exception to this policy applies to newly established schools that are entering their third year of operations during the upcoming academic year. This recent decision was communicated to all Dubai schools via a circular issued by the KHDA. The authority aims to streamline the inspection process, focusing on institutions at a critical stage of their development while temporarily relieving more established schools from the full inspection regimen.

The KHDA circular reads, “We would also like to inform you of an important update to school inspections during the 2024-25 academic year. Full school inspections will not be conducted across all private schools in Dubai, except for new private schools that will be in their third year of operation during the academic year.”

However, schools may request a comprehensive inspection from the Dubai Schools Inspection Bureau (DSIB). Such requests will be reviewed and approved at the discretion of the Knowledge and Human Development Authority (KHDA). Schools are required to submit their requests by July 5, 2024. The KHDA issued, “Schools with approved requests will be notified during Term 2 of the 2024-25 academic year.”

Dubai schools traditionally undergo annual inspections, during which they are evaluated and assigned ratings. However, these inspections were suspended during the pandemic. The ratings, which span from ‘Outstanding’ to ‘Weak’, are determined based on a defined set of criteria.

What is the current status of the ongoing inspection of schools under the KHDA?

The latest circular also mentions, “DSIB will conduct other visits that target specific focus areas and include ongoing monitoring activities. Schools will be notified ahead of time on the areas of focus and priorities for the next academic year.”

All schools are required to regularly update their ‘Self-Evaluation Form’ and online school profile over the course of the next academic year. It is imperative for schools to ensure that all necessary information is readily available for review by DSIB. Additionally, schools must consistently administer all critical external benchmark assessments.

Belrehif stated, “The School Self-Evaluation Form is an essential part of schools’ ongoing cycle of review and improvement planning and helps them measure how well they are doing in different performance indicators outlined in the UAE School Inspection Framework.”

Impact on School Rankings and Fees

The ability of schools to increase their fees is contingent upon their most recent evaluation by the DSIB. Schools that receive higher ratings are typically allowed to impose more substantial fee hikes. In April 2024, the KHDA introduced an Education Cost Index (ECI) set at 2.6 percent which would enable schools to modify their tuition fees for the 2024-25 academic year accordingly. The private schools in Dubai had been granted permission to raise tuition fees by up to 5.2 percent, as determined by their latest KHDA inspection outcomes.

In a recent interview, Fatma Belrehif,  DSIB CEO, announced, “The School Fees Framework is the mechanism by which schools can adjust their fees annually. The rate by which schools can adjust their fees is tied to each school’s most recent inspection rating. Any fee adjustment by schools must be approved by the KHDA. Schools will be notified in case of any changes or updates to the fee framework.”

How does this circular affect schools and parents?

Schools: Schools may need to adapt their internal quality assurance processes, relying more on self-evaluation and external feedback to maintain and improve standards.

  • Strategic Planning: With the absence of formal inspections, schools might focus on alternative ways to attract and retain students, such as enhancing their curriculum, extracurricular offerings, or investing in teacher development.
  • Performance Monitoring: Schools will need to find new methods to monitor and report their performance, potentially increasing collaboration with parent-teacher associations and using third-party evaluators.

Parents: Guardians and Parents may find it more challenging to assess the quality and performance of schools without the KHDA’s annual inspection reports. They might need to rely on word-of-mouth, online reviews, and direct engagement with schools to make informed decisions.

  • Engagement and Feedback: The halt in inspections could encourage more proactive engagement between parents and schools. Parents may need to take a more active role in communicating their expectations and concerns to ensure their child’s educational needs are met.
  • Financial Considerations: With the potential stability in school fees, parents might experience a degree of financial predictability. However, they should stay informed about any changes schools might implement to maintain quality in the absence of inspections.

As the educational community awaits further details and guidance from the KHDA, stakeholders are keenly observing how this decision will shape educational practices and policies in Dubai for the upcoming academic year.

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Sheikh Mohammed approves massive Dh30 billion rainwater drainage project for Dubai

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An integrated project to develop a rain drainage network in Dubai has been approved at a cost of Dh30-billion, announced Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice-President and Prime Minister of UAE, and Ruler of Dubai, on Monday.

Named ‘Tasreef’, the project will enhance the capacity of Dubai’s rainwater drainage system by 700%, covering all areas of the emirate.

The project is set to be completed by 2033 with construction to start immediately. It will serve Dubai for the next hundred years, added Sheikh Mohammed.

The project, which will cover all areas of Dubai and absorb more than 20 million cubic meters of water per day, is likely to be the largest such network to collect rainwater in the region.

‘Tasreef’ is a continuation of drainage projects launched by Dubai in 2019, covering the Expo Dubai area, Al Maktoum International Airport City, and Jebel Ali.

It comes around two months after unprecedented rains flooded the UAE. As a sustainable strategic project, it aims at addressing future climate change impacts, such as increased rainfall, with a network designed to seamlessly adapt to all rainfall events.

The project will utilise the latest Tunnel Boring Machines (TBM), the largest of their kind in the Middle East, known for their efficiency, speed, and high precision in excavation, and their ability to handle various topographical conditions.

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