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Good Rated UAE Schools

Schools rated Good will be performing schools, usually let down (in terms of a rating) by one or two criteria deemed important by the school inspection team. Here we only cover schools in Dubai and Abu Dhabi, the only two emirates that currently have a formal school inspection process.

Notes:
We would always advise you to read the detail as to why a school has achieved a specific rating. There may be criteria that the KHDA or ADEC feel are important that you may not.

For the 2015/16 inspection reports, Abu Dhabi and Dubai moved to a unified six point rating: Outstanding, Very Good, Good, Acceptable, Weak and Very Weak.

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September 22, 2016

Foremarke School, Dubai Science Park, Al Barsha South

“I am extremely proud of our achievements here at Foremarke. Our pastoral care not only aims to prepare our pupils for any challenge they may face in their future but also shapes them into true Foremarkians; children with common sense, who are aspirational and respectful and most importantly, children who will enjoy their education. Our unique small class sizes set us above all other academic institutions in Dubai, allowing for a truly tailored approach for each child. Additionally, children benefit from specialist teaching from Nursery up to Year 6 and this approach is reflected in our latest academic achievements, which has put us well above international standards in all areas of [...]

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September 6, 2016

Victory Heights Primary School, Dubai Sports City

Updated January 2017

Founded in 2013, Victory Heights Primary School is a new school bedding in Early Years Foundation Stage to Key Stage 2 provision with remarkable pace. After only its second formal inspection by the KHDA in 2016 it has secured Good School status, its ratings jumping up by between 20% and 40% in key categories of inspection in a single year. The key pointer prospective parents should take from this is that headline Inspection grading has to be understood in context. An improving school, particularly when showing this rate of progress across all phases, subjects and management indicators, is indicative of a school with significant potential across the board. [...]

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June 18, 2016

GEMS Our Own Indian School, Al Quoz 1

Formerly the Varkey International Private School, GEMS Our Own Indian School (OOIS), in its current form, was founded in its move to Al Quoz in 2002.

There are so many good things about this school – and some frustrations.

First, this is not simply a good school. It is in some key respects an outstanding one. This is recognised in the Dubai Schools’ Inspectorate’s awarding of such a broad splay of results. It is not usual for a school to be graded by the Dubai Inspectorate with such diversity – and especially for a school to effectively, in practice, be operating at Good, Very Good and Outstanding levels simultaneously.

The core problems first. [...]

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June 14, 2016

Cranleigh Abu Dhabi, Saadiyat Cultural District, Saadiyat Island

One of a few WhichSchoolAdvisor.com “Good Schools”, and an ADEC A3 High Performing Good School with Outstanding Features, Cranleigh Abu Dhabi is a school in phased launch offering an all-through, British-founded, education from FS to Year 13.

The school has had a single ADEC review thus far, completed in 2015, and we anticipate the school edging even higher in terms of rating as it works through its considered, very careful phased launch of all-through Senior school provision. On this note, we are awaiting guidance as to whether the school will maintain the A Level as the focus of Secondary provision, move to IB Diploma provision (unlike its UK counterpart), or offer parallel [...]

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June 12, 2016

Sunrise English Private School, Shabiya, Mussafah

Sunrise Private English School presents us with many difficulties in making sense of its offer. There is no question, in terms of the school’s exceptionally affordable fee structure, that it represents good value for money. It is also classified, in part given its fee context and in part its commitment, as a Highly Performing Band A 3 School by the Abu Dhabi School Inspectorate.

Make no mistake, An A3 grading is a real achievement. It is particularly impressive too given that in 2014 the school received an equivalent C6 “Unsatisfactory” grading indicative of a school very significantly failing its children.

However, newly secured “Good” school rating notwithstanding, [...]

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June 1, 2016

The Universal American School, Dubai Festival City

The Universal American School (UAS) provides a hybrid, parallel stream, mixed, co-educational FS – Year 12 US-International Baccalaureate education for 1473 pupils between the ages of 4 and 18 years.

The Early Years (Elementary) curriculum follows the International Baccalaureate Primary Years Programme [IB PYP].

The Middle Years curriculum follows a “This We Believe” (TWB) curriculum created by the Association for Middle Level Education (AMLE).

The High School curriculum is split between (1) an in-house, New York standards based US education built on Common Core and Next Generation standards in Grades 9-10; and (2) an International Baccalaureate programme [...]

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May 29, 2016

Greenfield Community School, Green Community, Dubai Investments Park

It is worth stating upfront that we think that there are many things that make Greenfield Community School special in the UAE. We also believe that parents should not be diverted from the many exceptional features of the school by the headline grading of the latest KHDA inspection, although there are issues raised which we will address. For a genuinely inclusive, all-through International Baccalaureate education, that can deliver for children of all abilities, we believe that Greenfield Community School sets a key benchmark for the sector.

What makes Greenfield so impressive can be summarised in the following key points:

This is a pioneering school in the delivery of the [...]
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May 26, 2016

Jumeira Baccalaureate School, Jumeirah 1

Spread over 8 acres of landscaped grounds, and in one of the best locations in Dubai, Taaleem’s Jumeira Baccalaureate School [JBS] is one of the flagship International Baccalaureate [IB] schools in the Emirates, with facilities and IB programmes competing with the best in Dubai.

The IB World school provides an inclusive, co-educational education to 975 children between the ages of 3 and 16, through Pre-K to Year 12 grades, with complete IB provision across the IB Primary Years Programme (PYP), IB Middle Years Programme (IB MYP), Diploma Programme (IB DP), and the IB Career-related Programme (IB CP).

The school provides a slipstream for all of the three Taaleem “The [...]

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May 26, 2016

Al-Mizhar American Academy, Al-Mizhar 1, Mirdif

Al-Mizhar American Academy (AAM), previously Al-Mizhar American Academy Private School for Girls, is best understood as a single-sex all-girl through school offering an FS to Grade 12 education based on the US, New England Association of Schools and Colleges, curriculum to children between the ages of 3 years and 18 years. AAM is a co-educational school for Pre-KG to KG 2, this provided very much following the request of, and as a service to parents. The school is owned and managed by the highly respected Taaleem.

Stand-out features for prospective parents are:

An all-girls school from Grade 1, rare in meeting a defined requirement for single-sex education by many [...]
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May 16, 2016

Japanese School in Dubai, Al Wasl

Prospective parents should note that education is compulsory in Japan only between the ages of 6 and 15, with schooling divided between elementary provision between the ages of 6 years and 12 years, and Junior High/ Lower Secondary provision between the ages of 12 years and 15 years. The Japanese School in Dubai (DJS) mirrors this, with formal structured education beginning from the age of 6 years, and no educational provision after the age of 15 years. This division does not fit easily in our tables and to compensate we have provided extra clarification.

The Japanese School in Dubai is one of only two Japanese schools in the UAE, the other being the Japanese School in Abu [...]

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May 14, 2016

Russian International School, Muhaisnah 4

Russia International School in Dubai [RISD] is the only Russian curriculum school in the United Arab Emirates and provides a natural slipstream to the St. Petersburg State Economic University (Dubai Branch). RISD provides a through FS1 – Grade 11 education for around 400 students between the age of 4 and 17 culminating in the Class IX Certificate of Basic General Education at 15 years and Class XI Certificate of Secondary (full) General Education at 17 years on graduation. In 2016, RISD secured its first “Good School” rating from KHDA Inspectors after more than five years of securing the lesser “Acceptable” grading. The new rating was achieved under the Dubai Inspectorate’s new [...]

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May 7, 2016

The English College Dubai, Al Safa 1

Prospective parents should note that this is an updated review completed in 2016.

The English College Dubai, Al Safa 1, is one of the most loved schools in Dubai, but, if there is one single message that comes across from school inspections over the last eight years, it is that the EC governors, and owners, have not played the role that you would expect from a Tier 1 school.

Communication between the school, and particularly parents is also not currently  at an acceptable standard – and the KHDA raises ongoing questions about the degree to which the Governors and owners invest in the school.

It is worth quoting key concerns of the KHDA:

May 2010: [...]

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April 10, 2016

Al Ameen Private School, Al Nahda

Updated December 2016

There are a number of extremely rare schools in Dubai that operate at levels significantly above their fee structure. Al Ameen, which delivers its education at some of the lowest fees anywhere in the Emirates, re-writes the rulebook that says schools cannot deliver a good standard of education to a budget.

With fees that run between 5,037 AED at FS phases, through to 5,709 AED in Year 11, in fact Al Ameen goes beyond even KHDA “Good” school provision in its attainment both at Post-16 (I)GCSE and the degree to which the school is integrated and engaged with its community. In these areas the school attains the award of “Outstanding” across the board, [...]

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April 3, 2016

Horizon International School, Umm Al Sheif

Updated December 2016

Prospective parents should be advised that, to some degree, Horizon International should be treated as a new school in weighing up the strengths of the school for potential provision of education for their child(ren).

The school is mid-way through a period of phased launch to full FS-Year 13 English National Curriculum provision to GCE A’ Level.

The school begins GCE A’ Level provision for the first time in September 2016 and examination results will not be reported until 2018.

A very limited number of (I)GCE O’ Level examinations were taken for the first time in 2015 (mostly in languages) and (I)GCSE full examinations will be sat for [...]

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March 28, 2016

Emirates International School – Meadows

Updated December 2016

Emirates International School – Meadows [EISM], together with Emirates International School – Jumeirah [EISJ], together comprise the Emirates International School [EIS], although to all intents and purposes, notwithstanding their shared ownership by the Al Habtoor Group, they are separate schools with independent leadership. Our review of the Jumeirah campus can be found here and prospective parents will find significant supplementary information here on the shared framework of both schools.

What is striking about both schools, however, is their very broad similarity in both IB performance and Dubai school inspectorate evaluation. The [...]

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March 26, 2016

Uptown School, Mirdif

Updated December 2016

Taaleem’s Uptown School [UPS] is in the final stage of its phased launch that will see it reach complete all-through International Baccalaureate structured education from FS to Year 12 provision by September 2016.

UPS offers near complete IB syllabus progression including the Primary and Middle Years programmes [IB PYP, IB MYP] culminating in the Diploma [IB DP].

The phased launch  follows the move of separate Uptown primary, middle and secondary schools to a single Uptown 300,000 square foot campus set within 14 acres of landscaped grounds adjacent to Mirdif Park in 2012.

Facilities are Tier 1 – and excellent. They include zoned [...]

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March 24, 2016

Emirates International School Jumeirah, Umm Al Sheif

Updated December 2016

Prospective parents should note that Emirates International School Jumeirah [EISJ] is, in fact, located in Umm Al Sheif. The school has also been known variously as Emirates International Private School, Emirates International School and Emirates International School Um Suquim which adds to the confusion.

The school, together with Emirates International School Meadows [EISM], together comprise the Emirates International School [EIS], although to all intents and purposes, notwithstanding their shared ownership by the Al Habtoor Group, they are separate schools with independent leadership.

Parents historically have chosen between the two based [...]

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March 13, 2016

Raffles World Academy, Umm Suqeim 3

Updated December 2016

Raffles World Academy was established by Emaar Education in 2006 following negotiation with Raffles Campus, a school management company in Singapore, which eventually led to Emaar purchasing the company and “Raffles International” brand outright in 2007.

The Raffles brand was rolled out to the then “Raffles International School – West Campus”; “Raffles International School – South Campus”; “Raffles International School – North Campus”; and “Raffles Nursery.”

As part of the purchase, Ng Boon Yew, the founding chairman of Raffles Campus Singapore, moved to Dubai to set up and run the UAE schools as the chief executive of Emaar [...]

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March 5, 2016

GEMS World Academy, Abu Dhabi

Updated December 2016

It is rare to find a dedicated International Baccalaureate KG, let alone a GEMS school – or one situated in the heart of Abu Dhabi. Little wonder GEMS World Academy Abu Dhabi[GWAAD] is over-subscribed. The school as you would expect from a dedicated 4 to 10 years elementary is inherently one with considerable warmth, and the leadership of its historic Principal, Jay Roy, was graded “absolutely exceptional” according to independent feedback to our sister site, whichschooladvisor.com in founding the school. The new Principal (September 2016), Linda LaPine, is by all accounts equally driven, bringing with her a new focus on building a “home away [...]

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March 5, 2016

Dubai Scholars Private School, Al Ghusais School Zone, Al Qusais

Updated December 2016

Dubai Scholars Private School [DSPS] brands itself as having academic foundations rooted in the “British model for teaching and learning, offering students a rigorous program to progress from one stage to the next supported by classroom interactions that challenge students to think deeply.”

The school is run for profit and, founded in 1976 as a micro primary school operating from a villa in Deira, was the first school opened by the Scholars International Group [SIG] which today owns the Scholars International Academy, Sharjah and the newly established Clarion School in Dubai.

Dubai Scholars educates around 1600 predominantly Indian students [...]

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