Private schools seek Saudization exemption

Private schools seek Saudization exemption
Updated 16 April 2013

Private schools seek Saudization exemption

Private schools seek Saudization exemption

Private international schools say they will face serious problems if they can’t correct the status of their employees within the three-month period granted by Custodian of the Two Holy Mosques King Abdullah.
“According to the new requirements by the Ministry of Labor, the number of violations in the private schools is really large,” said Abdurrahman Al-Haqbani, head of the National Committee for Private Education in the Saudi Council of Chambers of Commerce and Industry.
“Most of the teachers in girls’ schools are sponsored by their husbands and not their employees,” he said. “Technically, they are now working illegally in the Kingdom unless the Ministry of Interior makes an exception, as requested by the Ministry of Labor, for a female dependent to work as a teacher.”
Al-Haqbani said that the Ministry of Labor’s request came in order to avoid a possible shortage of teachers in private schools since it is difficult to find Saudi teachers for English and science subjects.
He warned that 198,000 students would be affected if their private schools are closed.
“Nitaqat program requires 80 percent Saudization in Arabic private schools and 15 percent in international private schools,” he said. According to Al-Haqbani, even if the international schools are given visas, the problem won’t be solved. He said issuing more visas for international schools will only increase the number of foreign labor which the Ministry of Labor is trying hard to reduce.
“Why not hire the wives of expatriates who are already living here?” he asked.
Ministry of education and other government departments have created number of programs to make it easier for the private school owners to hire Saudis. Earlier, the range of wages for Saudi female graduates was between SR 1,700 and SR 2,500. Now, the minimum salary for Saudi teachers in private schools is SR 5,600, half of which is paid by Hadaf.