Letter to students on the occasion of the new scholastic year, 2007-2008

From King Abdallah II of Jordan
To Jordanian students
On the occasion of the new scholastic year, 2007-2008
19 August 2007
Translated from Arabic

In the name of God, the Most Merciful, the Compassionate,

Praise be to God, Lord of all Things,
And prayers and peace be upon the honest Arab Prophet,
And upon all Aal Al Bayt and the Prophet's companions,

Dear Students,
Peace, God's mercy and His blessings upon you,

The beginning of the school year is a reunion of our sons and daughters, who are Jordan's jewels and assets, with one of the most cherished institutions of the homeland, the educational institution.

On this occasion, we would like to reaffirm our pride in our educational institutions, in our schools, colleges, institutes and universities, and to reiterate our keenness to ensure that they remain the source of our excellence, and a tower of identity and self-esteem.

We want these institutions to be our path and means to advancement, especially that Jordan was established and grew in a school that glorifies the values of giving, sacrifice and devotion to our religion and our Arab identity. As our region passes through these complicated and difficult political conditions, the importance of our national educational system becomes apparent. Because the education system is the maker of bright minds and the training ground for promising leadership, it is our foundation.

Our institutions are required today to rise up to the level of the historical responsibility they shoulder. In these times, when extremism, fanaticism, rejectionism and intolerance are becoming a common culture in some communities, we look to educational institutions to help prevent our slide into such thinking and ensure that citizens exercise sound judgment and rational thinking. Otherwise, the community will lose these individuals - who are the noblest of our assets – and be denied their giving.

This vital intellectual role lies at the heart of the educational process in Jordan, and those in charge of this process are role models, blessed with knowledge and culture. On their shoulders rests the responsibility to care for young of Jordanians, male and female, and to lead them to the fields of knowledge and the shores of innovation.

The student also bears responsibility for achievement through hard, meticulous work.

Nations do not rise and achieve prosperity and welfare except by acquiring knowledge. We in Jordan are resolved to achieve revival and positive change, and to entrench the principles of participation, justice, equal opportunity, tolerance and respect for differing opinions. Public and private educational institutions are but the basic foundations on which to establish these noble principles.

Just as we require teachers to be giving, open and innovative in their vital role in the educational process, we urge our students, girls and boys, to excel and distinguish themselves, to benefit from every available opportunity, to be persistent and shoulder responsibility. Rest assured that your success is success for the nation and its people, and a sign of its progress and its civilisation.

Dear Students,

Since the educational process is a reciprocal one between teachers and students, we are keen to elevate the two elements of this vital sector. The socio-economic empowerment of teachers through the provision of proper housing and a decent income is just a first step towards realising the welfare of those working in the educational sector. The welfare of educators tops our national priorities in our process of development and modernisation. Projects to support students and initiatives to provide schools with technology, research facilities and other tools of knowledge are a complementary step towards knowledge revolution. They receive our utmost attention and support.

Dear Sons and Daughters,

At the beginning of this school year, we call on our educators to pledge to the homeland excellence and constructive competition, and to be generous in giving and keen to acquire knowledge. You should know that our achievement and progress starts with you, and will not be won without your effort.

I wish you many happy returns of the day.
Peace, God's mercy and His blessings upon you,

Abdullah II ibn Al Hussein
Amman, 19 August 2007