The Sheffield Private School, Al Nahda 2 -THE REVIEW
The Sheffield Private School Dubai – updated August 2019, KHDA 2019
The Sheffield Private School Dubai (TSPS] is a for-profit, near full-phase English national Curriculum school offering education from EYFS through to (I)GCSE GCE A’ Level. Historically, we rated the school very poorly – more on this below.
However, in 2019, this is a very different school – and one that is now, in our view, worthy of consideration by parents. The transformation of school provision since 2016 is in many ways extraordinary and highly commendable.
The Sheffield Private School History
Historically,the school provided insufficient information for prospective parents to benchmark the school in the sector or make a considered decision for considering the school for their children. Information provided to us in March 2016 was some of the most limited provided by any school in the Emirates, extraordinary for an established school and particularly one managed by a UK qualified Principal.
Information gaps included
- No information on Post-16 GCE A’ Level provision
- Limited information on (I)GCSE provision limited only to subjects offered
- No information on school ownership
- No information on examination performance at any phase
- No developed information on facilities
- No information on Special Educational Needs provision
- No published newsletters
- No parental portal
Published information too was consistently out-of-date, or simply wrong. The last significant school information was, then, published in 2014. Sheffield did not provide the basic level of information needed by all parents to gain even a moderate understanding of a school.
It is worth noting that the school’s owner historically employed GEMS to run the school (2009), but terminated their management contract.
Despite being an English National Curriculum school prospective parents should also note that no provision is made at the Shefield Private School Dubai for the teaching of GCE A’ Level English. This is accounted for by the school because nearly all children learn English as an Additional Language [EAL].
The school has been rated “Satisfactory” for 7 years, the lowest possible accreditation before a school is placed in special measures. KHDA Inspectors noted in 2014-15 that school failings are significant in the following areas:
- Teachers lack the ability and training to identify and support children with Special Educational Needs [SEN]
- Many children are effectively excluded from Post-16 educational provision at the school because of the limited choice of subjects offered to AS or GCE A’ Level
- Unstable retention of teaching staff with a 33% turnover off teachers impacting on children across phases
- Limited monitoring of student progress
- Post-16 Special Educational Needs [SEN] is unsatisfactory and does not meet a minimum standard to educate children
- Additional language Arabic provision is unsatisfactory and does not meet a minimum standard to educate children
- Students at secondary and post-16 phases have insufficient opportunity to develop critical thinking skills or apply learning outside text books.
- Post-16 students lack the confidence to work independently
- At Foundation Stage some teachers “do not fully understand how to foster younger children’s learning”
- Recruitment at Post-16 is reactive to current needs and the school has no planned approach to future growth
- The space available in school is limited for the number and size of the students resulting in overcrowding
- The FS learning infrastructure is poor slowing children’s progress
- The stock of books in the library does not meet curriculum needs
The school scored “Outstanding” in a single area – for its provision for the health and safety of students across every phase, including child protection; guidance on cyber-bullying and Internet risk; excellent supervision of children both at school and on buses; risk assessments and fire drills; record keeping of medical staff; promotion of healthy eating; and prompt and effective repairs to the school as required to ensure a safe educational environment.
Sheffield Private School Dubai Facilities
Facilities at the school include three fully equipped ICT labs; art studio; drama studio; music rooms; networked/wi-fi equipped classrooms with projectors; library and shaded/canopied outside areas for play. Sporting facilities include a covered five lane swimming pool and learner pool; multi-purpose hall with facilities for volleyball, badminton, basketball and gymnastics; covered netball courts; and astro-turf football and hockey pitches.
Main competitive sports at the school are cricket, football and netball.
The schools extra-curricular provision includes a homework club; doodle and graffiti club; Lego club; French club; netball clubs; football clubs; art and craft club; painting club; literacy club; reading and writing for non-Arabs; Islamic values clubs; “Science Whizz” club; and drama society.
Bottom line? The SchoolsCompared.com Verdict 2019
In 2016 we argued:
“In summary, whilst individual KHDA inspections can only reasonably provide a snapshot in time of any school, the consistently acceptable reporting of the school over seven years, taken with the serious nature of concerns expressed by the KHDA, the instability of faculty and complete failure of the school to provide meaningful public information to prospective parents, means that it is simply not possible to responsibly recommend Sheffield Private School Dubai. The best that can be said for Sheffield is that it is a “safe” school for children to attend.”
Our view today is very different. Curriculum provision is strong across IGCSE and A Level, information is now relatively transparent – and English and Mathematics provision at A Level is outstanding. We will be visiting this school later this year and will provide a more detailed view of current provision view then.
© SchoolsCompared.com 2019
Good with Very Good and Outstanding features
FS1: 21,848 +449 Book Fee
FS2: 21,848 + 449 Book Fee
YEAR 1: 25,942 + 843 book fee
YEAR 2: 25,942 + 843 book fee
YEAR 3: 25,942 + 1,123 book fee
YEAR 4: 25,942 + 1,123 book fee
YEAR 5: 25,942 + 1,123 book fee
YEAR 6: 25,942 + 1,123 book fee
YEAR 7: 30,723 + 1,404 book fee
YEAR 8: 30,723 + 1,404 book fee
YEAR 9: 30,723 + 1,404 book fee
YEAR 10: 34,135 + 1,404 book fee
YEAR 11: 34,135 + 1,404 book fee
YEAR 12: 41,201 + 1,685 book fee
YEAR 13: 41,201 + 1,685 book fee
National Curriculum for England
(I)GCSE O' Level
GCE A' Level
Note: KHDA state the school does not have accreditation as of November 2014)
Arabic 1st and 2nd Language
Arabic 1st and 2nd Language
Travel and Tourism
Personal Health and Social Education
• formal assessment
• school reports / reference
• at least 5 A*-C grades for Post-16 A-Level entry
• recommended minimum (I) GCSE B grade in subjects to be studied at A/S or A level
Special Educational Needs [SEN]:
• Fully inclusive
Al Nahda 2, Dubai
Indian (largest nationality)
Special Educational Needs [SEN]: 47
Shares owned by Gulf Islamic Investments [GLL] (December 2014)
Managing Director: Nand Lal
+971 (0) 4 267 8444
• Attention to detail across health and safety provision at the school
• Astonishing level of improvement to school provision in the last three years
• Attractive school design externally
• High levels of school transparency
• Outstanding Sixth Form provision in English and Mathematics
• Curriculum breadth including BTEC
• High performing school leadership
• Arabic subjects