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Early Childhood Development and Care:

The Ministry of Education has laid down the basics of physical, social, emotional, and mental development for students and their simultaneous development in early childhood, between the ages of 3 and 8 years. This process depends at each stage on the abilities achieved by the child at the previous stage. These policies have evolved to address the unique needs of young learners, raise performance levels, and create plans to build and institutionalize the child's entry and preparation for higher education stages.

The organizational guide of the Ministry issued by Cabinet Resolution No. (511) dated 9/2-1440 AH stated: "The general objective of the work of the General Department of Early Childhood of the General Education Agency is based on working to provide distinguished educational services for children (from the age of 3 until the third grade of elementary school). In addition, follow-up on the performance of the early childhood stage according to the approved indicators to prepare students for enrollment in basic education".

Initiatives:

  • Developing kindergartens and expanding their services to include all regions of the Kingdom in order to achieve the strategic goal of "ensuring equitable and inclusive quality education for all, and enhancing lifelong learning opportunities for all" via the indicator "Gross enrollment ratios in kindergartens." One of its most important goals is to raise the rate of children's enrollment in kindergarten from 17% to 90% in 2030.
  • The early childhood initiative "Quick Wins" that benefits from the material, human and financial resources in order to increase the enrollment rate in the primary classes by assigning female teachers to teach young male and female pupils at the beginning of the academic year 1441 AH (2019 AD).
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Projects:

  • Establishing a television channel specializing in children's programs to support the Ministry of Education's directives and policies.
  • Early developmental learning standards for kindergarten in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia for the age group (3-6) years. These standards help institutions and groups directly related to the child's upbringing and education to realize expectations of what the child should know and be able to do.  This document is a descriptive guide to a set of expectations for what children have in terms of knowledge, behaviors, and skills that will contribute to building the child's personality in the later stages of learning to be a good, productive, and effective citizen in his society.
  • Mother and child education program with the goal of assisting mothers in providing their children with basic skills (mental, physical, emotional, and social) in accordance with their child's developmental characteristics at the age of five years. The program is both:
        1. Educational: to assist and support the mother in the care of her children​.
        2. Compensatory for children who were unable to attend kindergarten​.
  • The Personal Safety Program to protect children from harm, developed in collaboration with "AGFUND" and "UNICEF," with the goal of enhancing personal safety values and skills among children, teachers, and parents by providing a healthy educational environment that contributes to the development of preventive skills for various types of abuse and neglect.
  • Improving learning environments in kindergartens using the "acres scale", or what is known as "the scale of the impact of the environment in early childhood on the child according to a scientific methodology and using a codified scientific tool, through a partnership with King Abdulaziz University. This aims to identify behavior directed towards the quality of the educational environment for public and private kindergartens.
  • Conducting research to support the General Department of Early Childhood initiatives and projects.
  • Establishing and expanding a network of kindergarten-early childhood schools.
  • Improving and expanding the skills of female early childhood educators.
  • Reviewing and developing early childhood bylaws and regulations.
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