Bright Learners School, Rashidiya – The Review
Background – Bright Learners School Dubai set to open in August 2020
Bright Learners School (Bright Learners Private School) is an American curriculum school currently set to open in August 2020. The US curriculum school will initially offer a Pre-Kindergarten to Grade 4 Primary education as it phases its opening to Grade 12. Bright Learners School will offer its students a US Common Core Standards based curriculum in combination with the UAE’s National Curriculum for Arabic and Islamic Studies. The school will align with premium Massachusetts state standards.
Location – In the Heart of Rashidiya
Bright Learners School is situated in the heart of Rashidiya with proximity for families based around City Centre Mirdif:
Bright Learners Private School is taking over the long empty Safia Al Quorashiya Basic Girls School and refurbishment and remodelling of the old school will be completed by May 2020 when parents will be welcomed to tour the school.
Major works are beginning on site now and we will update our review as progress is made in bringing the school to a modern standard.
Parents should note the size of the site. Whilst the school will open initially to Year 4, this is a site which we estimate would sustain an 1800 – 2600 capacity all-through role in the medium term. It will be interesting to see how the school manages the scale of available space with the limited KG – Year 4 initial opening.
Fees and Value for Money
Bright Learners School fees are firmly in the value segment, ranging from AED 22,000 at KG1 to AED 26,000 at Grade 4. As the school’s redevelopment is completed we will be better able to advise parents on the overall ROI and value proposition. This will ultimately depend on the depth and quality of facility provision, subject breadth, class sizes and teacher-student ratio, amongst other areas. However, at this stage, fees at this level, in the US curriculum school sector, we think offer exceptional value for money, given the schools’ majority teacher recruitment direct from the United States. We rate ROI on this basis outstanding.
All teachers being recruited by the school are US qualified with teaching experience from schools in North America, Europe or the Gulf.
It is early days, and we have not yet been made aware of any discounts that may be available for founding families. We would expect Year 12 fees to come in around or below AED 30,000 based on the current structure. As of April 2020 we can confirm that Bright Learners School will offer pre-K entry.
Founding Principal, Bright Learners School, Adrianna Joy Chestnut, is an educationalist by training. She brings to her role an extensive academic background with a Bachelor’s degree in Early Childhood Education and Teaching from Miami University, this followed immediately with her M.Ed. In curriculum and Instruction from Wright State. In the last three years Ms Chestnut has completed her doctorate in leadership at Trevecca Nazarene, this with a specific focus on the issues of leadership within the UAE. Ms Chestnut brings to the school a Principal Licence from Ohio and a decade’s experience in the US and UAE, latterly working as part of the Abu Dhabi Schools Regulator (ADEK) team, supporting school Principals across Abu Dhabi in developing outstanding schools for their children.
Ms Chestnut describes herself as “an enthusiastic administrator who advocates for implementing student and faculty continuous improvement programs focused on raising academic levels of students, improving educators’ teaching skills, school rating and encouraging community involvement [and] a student-focused leader who forges strong relationships with all members of the school community.” Ms Chestnut, speaking exclusively to SchoolsCompared.com about her plans for Bright Learners School, confirmed:
“We are very excited to open up our enrolment. We want the community to know that we are here – and that a very special school is coming for all the families in our area. I am so proud of the education we will offer at Bright Learners School for every single child.
Bright Learners School is the only private school in Al Rashidiya. We are also the only American school in the wider area. More than half of our teachers are recruited from the United States – we are a genuine American school to our foundations – and we will be deeply embedded in our community.
We have open doors to our neighbours to share our facilities and place Bright Learners School at the very heart of their community.
Bright Learners School is a premium school – but we are deliberately making our fees affordable. We understand the economic challenges that parents are facing – and our amazing and committed owners have responded to those challenges by ensuring that our fees have been set so that we can offer the broadest welcome possible to every family and their children.
Professionally, my first love is Primary education, and what we are set to deliver here is world class. I am very honoured and privileged to be here – and I am deeply committed to making sure that Bright Learners is the hub of the wonderful community surrounding our school.
Under my leadership we will deliver a world class, inspirational, whole child centred and academic American education for every child. ”
Adrianna Joy Chestnut, Founding Principal, Bright Learners School Dubai.
Core values of Bright Learners School Dubai – and School Uniqueness
Bright Learners School has been established to deliver the following key elements of a child’s education:
- Academic excellence – inclusive at its heart, the school will deliver a rich, stimulating and academic American education for children with a strong focus on inspiring in children a lifelong love of learning
- International community – the school welcomes children of all nationalities with a curriculum built around whole child development and inspiring a sense in children of their being global citizens
- Subject breadth – the US curriculum will provide a rounded, comprehensive education for every child
- Value for money – fees have been set to recognise the many challenges parents face in today’s economic environment. The aim is to provide very strong ROI for parents with an exceptionally high standard of education delivered by highly qualified US teachers at lower, highly affordable fees relative to other schools offering this quality of curriculum and provision
- High integrity and richly experienced school leadership driven to ensure that every child meets his or her fullest potential
- Compassionate school ethics built on recognition of the value of every child as part of the Bright Learners united school community – and with genuine and extended links with families and the broader community surrounding the school.
- Strong focus on whole child development including building in every child a sense of self, compassion for others, accomplishment, confidence and resilience.
- Wrap-around care for every child and family. “We will always work around the needs of our parents and families.”
ECAs – Strong sporting focus
The school has confirmed to us that its initial focus will be on delivering very high quality sporting provision as the hub of its ECA offer for students. Key sports will be football, swimming and basketball. Others ECAs include Dodgeball, Newspaper Club (Young Reporters), Science Cub, ‘Funky Fitness’, LEGO Club, Origami, Drama Club and Orchestra.
Bottom line? The SchoolsCompared.com Verdict 2020 on Bright Learners School Dubai
It’s far too early to deliver a considered view on Bright Learners School. This is, after all, a school only just embarking on a hugely complex redevelopment of a long closed school – and one of considerable scale. This will be an ambitious project. Eventually, this is a school that could offer a US education to around 2,500 children – and the makings of schools of this scale are usually made in their early years. Planning must begin now on the eventual likely shape of later provision, including whether Advanced Placement will be built in from Day One into the graduating offer along side a standard High School Diploma. This is, we have long argued, a key test of the quality of any US school. More on this can be found here.
To be fair, this would now, at this very early stage before even the school’s opening, be running long before the school is even walking.
What we are certain of is that the value fees segment is one that is subject to considerable demand, this fed not least by the far reaching ongoing impacts of the Villa Schools Closure Programme and under-supply of value fee places. This is a rare space in UAE schooling where demand has not been impacted by the competition evident elsewhere in the sector.
The opportunities are here, particularly under the stellar choice of Founding Principal, to make an important contribution to a school segment that needs investment. Parents will be hoping that Bright Learners School can deliver on that considerable promise. After our meetings with the school’s owners and founding Principal, the future looks promising … Watch this space.Are you looking for a place for your child, and want help from our school consultants? If so, click on the link below, and we will forward your request for information to the school or schools of the same type that we are confident have availability. This is a free service for our readers from SchoolsCompared.com and Which Media.Request School Information
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NA - first inspection due 2022-23
KG1: AED 22,000
KG2: AED 24,000
Grade 1: AED 26,000
Grade 2: AED 26,000
Grade 3: AED 26,000
Grade 4: AED 26,000
Grade 5: Phased launch TBC
Grade 6: Phased launch TBC
Grade 7: Phased launch TBC
Grade 8: Phased launch TBC
Grade 9: Phased launch TBC
Grade 10: Phased launch TBC
Grade 11: Phased launch TBC
Grade 12: Phased launch TBC
(1) Common Core
(2) Massachusetts state standards
(3) North Eastern Association of Schools and Colleges (NEASC) accreditation to be applied for
(1) the school has not confirmed whether it aims to offer Advanced Placement with the standard (lesser) High School Diploma
Estimated eventual capacity 1800 - 2400
NA - school in planning phase
September 2020 target
Rashidiya, Deira, Dubai
(1) 56A Street, Al Rashidiya, Dubai. In front of Majilis Al Rashidiya. Makani No. (GPS) 3846990525.
Largest nationality TBC
Bright Education Group
Phone: Landline: (04) 335-3203
Mobile: (055) 597-2500
• Extensive school site with capacity for the school to grow to all-through American curriculum provision
• Value fees – we estimate that these will fall around the AED, 30,000 mark should the school achieve eventual all-through opening
• Highly respected, award-winning, Founding Head with a proven history of achievement and outstanding academic foundations.
• Any new school is a risk is unproven and carries risk
• Significant renovation and remodelling is required in a very short period to bring this school to a high standard for its planned opening
• Lack of detail on facilities, staffing, curriculum breadth and objectives means that we can only at this stage outline the potential in broad brush strokes