In January 2014, details of Qatar’s long-awaited new nursery law were released after the legislation received final approval from The Amir, HH Sheikh Tamim bin Hamad Al Thani. Law No 1 of 2014 – which passed through the Cabinet in October 2015 – had been in the works for years.
The law defines nursery schools as a place designated for the care of children below four years of age. These include the nurseries run by public or private schools. According to Law No 1 of 2014, employees at nurseries are strictly limited to women. Nurseries should be managed by a qualified female director, who will be responsible for all work at the place. She will be aided by a female general supervisor, a female assistant supervisor, a dietician, a nurse, and a female physician, who can be a visiting specialist in paediatrics or general medicine.
In addition, there should be an adequate number of guards, cleaners, drivers, and other necessary staff. Visiting doctors, as well as other employees who do not come into direct contact with the children, may be men.
All nursery staff should be physically fit, free of any communicable disease, enjoy a good reputation with no criminal history, and possess adequate qualifications and expertise.
Nurseries should also keep regular and updated records. According to the law, a prior licence has to be obtained from the department concerned at the Ministry of Administrative Development, Labor and Social Affairs to establish, manage or modify an existing nursery.
The Ministry of Administrative Development, Labor and Social Affairs (MADLSA) will classify nurseries based on the qualifications of its staff and the fees. Nurseries are expected to provide comprehensive care to children and ensure the appropriate conditions to develop their skills in all fields.
With the implementation of this law, nurseries have become more regulated and safer for children. So when you decide to enrol your child in a nursery ensure the school meets all the criteria outlined.