These are children, adolescents, and young adults with Down Syndrome, cerebral palsy accompanied by intellectual or developmental disabilities, and autism spectrum disorders and they make up the majority of our student population. Class size ratio of teachers to students is 1:3 in all school programs except the Autism Unit, where the ratio is 1:2. The Teachers There are currently 125 employed by the school. These are all professionals with varied expertise.
Due to the limited professionals who have specific expertise in the fields needed by the school, many, about 25% of the teaching force are foreign nationals from the United States, Canada and other European countries, to serve for at least two (2) years in the school. The remaining 75% are from the different provinces in Qatar. All teachers in the academic unit are degree holders, mostly with masters and doctorate diploma with corresponding licenses in the fields of education, medicine and psychology. The age range is wide, from 25 years to 60.
This includes teachers who are at the same time in the management level. The Management Policies and legislations in the school are made by the school board headed by Her Highness Sheikha Moza Bint Nasser Bin Abdullah Al-Missned, the Chairperson of the Supreme Council of Family Affairs. The executive functions are performed by the management team composed of 20 experienced professionals organized in the form of a Management Committee. The head is the Managing Director who is from the United States, followed by an Assistant Managing Director who is from Qatar.
75% or majority of the members of the ManCom are foreign nationals while 25% are from Qatar. The academic and service units are fully manned with leaders but it is noticeable though that in the backhouse, the school has not installed a department that will handle the concerns of human resource or a human resource department. In its absence, the public relations department handles the processing of teachers and other admin staff recruitment. On the surface, observing the transactions in the offices and the other facilities, the movements in the school campus, the school was seemingly operating normally.
But as we dig deeper, we would find some areas of major concerns which should be cause for immediate and decisive actions by the school. The school has been experiencing high turnover of teachers for the past two years. Because resignations were frequent, recruitment which is done regularly by the Public Relations Department. The massive tasks in recruitment have eaten up much of the time of the PR staff, so that major functions of the department are de-prioritized. The ManCom with its American Managing Director concentrated on sourcing funds to augment to the schools facilities.
The proceeds from the students tuition were not sufficient to finance the expansion programs and the upgrading of facilities of the school. The ManCom had to source for international funding agencies for additional support including the schools benefactor and strong advocate, Her Highness Sheikha Moza Bint Nasser Bin Abdullah Al-Missned, the Chairperson of the Supreme Council of Family Affairs, who is also the Chairperson of the school board. In the first quarter of 2007, the ManComs attention was called by the school board to solve complaints by the parents and the community about the declining quality of services provided by the school.
This resulted to the ManComs creation of an adhoc committee to investigate the facts, study the causes of the problems and recommend solutions to the findings. The adhoc committee reported the major findings of their investigation. The complaints of the parents and the community were due to overcrowding of students in classes, where instead of 1:3 ratio, there were 10 students already being handled by each teacher. This was due to the lack of teachers handling specific subjects.