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English National Curriculum
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April 18, 2017

The Alpha School, Al Qusais 3

“The Alpha School is not just another new school – Alpha seeks something diffferent, and special, for all its children.

Our mission, vision and values are embedded within our three pillars of Identity, Family and Innovation.

Our Alpha identity is shaped by our multicultural environment and our appreciation of UAE culture and heritage within our core British curriculum. International-mindedness and respect are key.  Our students celebrate a strong sense of identity in faith, language and heritage.  An Alpha education draws the best elements of all these frameworks to provide an exceptionally personal learning experience for every child.

The Alpha family [...]

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December 21, 2016

Brighton College Dubai, Al Barsha South

“Brighton’s reputation is built upon offering its pupils an innovative curriculum and outstanding pastoral care in their pursuit of academic excellence, all underpinned by a passionate belief in the importance of the individual.

Every child in the Brighton College family of schools is valued for his or her own sake, encouraged to develop his or her talents to the full in a community where there are no stereotypes and where every achievement, however small, is noticed.” Ian McIntyre, Director of Schools, Brighton College International Schools

 

Background

Founded in 1845, Brighton College (UK) is a top-tier UK independent secondary day and boarding [...]

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October 31, 2016

The City School International, Nad Al Hamar

“We aim to develop each one of our students into true learners, individuals who always seek to broaden their perspective and to face life’s challenges with courage and conviction.

Education is a pursuit that goes far beyond a qualification. While we aim to help our students excel in the course they are studying, we also hope to instil in them a thirst for learning throughout their lives.  At The City School, our teachers, students, and parents work together to realise this goal.”

Dr. Farzana Firoz, Chief Executive Officer, City Schools (Pvt.) Ltd.

Updated November 2016

City School International presents an extraordinarily mixed picture for [...]

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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 22, 2016

Dubai British Foundation, Jumeirah Islands

Updated November 2016

Taaleem’s Dubai British Foundation [DBF] is a new, specialist, self-contained Early Years Taaleem British school teaching an enriched but targeted Early Years Foundation Stage (EYFS) British curriculum in Foundation Years 1 and 2 only for children between the ages of 3 and 5 years. Opened in 2014, the Foundation provides the Early Years feeder to the Dubai British School Jumeirah Park reviewed here. Dubai British School provides continuity through all-through Year 1 – 13 British schooling to IGCSE and A Level) The pre-school is set on a 1.5 acre site in the Jumeirah Island with close proximity both to slipstream school and the Springs community in [...]

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September 18, 2016

The Children’s Garden, Dubai Investments Park, Jumeirah 2, Al Barsha 2

‘Childhood should be a journey, not a race’ Mission Statement. Taaleem's The Children's Garden. Dubai.

Taaleem’s The Children’s Garden [TCG] offers for its children both a childhood and education.  There are three pre-schools. The first opened in the Green Community in 2005, this followed by the Jumeirah 2 pre-school in 2009. The latest, The Children’s Garden, opened in Al Barsha 2 in 2012.

Updated February 2017

First thing to get out of the way, is that we really like this school. There are many significant developments taking place at The Children’s Garden [TCG] that, for us, really showcase how special these schools are – and in particular the extraordinary [...]

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September 16, 2016

British Pre-School Nursery Curriculum Guide & EYFS

Updated November 2016

Our pre-school guides have been written following requests from parents for us to help make sense of the early years choices facing them in deciding provision for their Child(ren). One concern that has been relayed to us is that parents, when visiting pre-schools as part of their shortlisting, face schools that to some degree seem “much of a muchness,” with children painting and generally carrying on activities that seem pretty standard and similar to what they would expect from  simple day care.

In the following, and related Pre-school Guides for the range of alternative curricular nurseries, we explore the differences between [...]

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September 11, 2016

International School of Creative Science, Nad Al Sheba 3

Updated November 2016

The International School of Creative Science [ISCS] is a new Arabic-American dual curriculum faith school launching Phase 1 of its provision in Nad Al Sheba 3. The school is situated in the prime education corridor between Kings School Nad Al Sheba and Repton School on a circa 11-acre site.

The school has been established with the single aim of balancing the best of Western education, and its currency for later university and career development, with the protection, appreciation and nurturing of Muslim and broader Arabic culture, language, faith and morality within its role. It’s an East meets West equation that is far from simple to resolve and [...]

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September 6, 2016

Victory Heights Primary School, Dubai Sports City

Updated January 2017

“We absolutely adore this school. Have been happily part of it for 4 years. No other school can compare, Miss Sasha knows EVERY child’s name and passionate about their performance. We are very blessed to be a part of such a great and caring school.” User Comment, SchoolsCompared.com – see below.

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. [...]

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September 4, 2016

Dubai British School, Springs 3, Emirates Hills

Updated March 2017

“As Principal and a parent of 3 children at the school, I value DBS as a happy school above all else, made up of happy people – happy to be respected, valued, and appreciated. We give every child the opportunity to succeed – and in a way that is meaningful to them.”

Brendon Fulton, Principal, Dubai British School

“I feel proud to be part of a school where students, parents and colleagues alike enjoy – and are happy – to come to school.

At its heart Dubai British School is a community; a community where everyone is valued and each of us contributes, in our own way, towards making this the extraordinarily special [...]

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June 26, 2016

Manor Primary School, Al Safa 1

Updated April 2017

Manor Park Primary is a new, FS to Year 6 British English National Curriculum Primary school for girls and boys between the ages of 4 and 11. This has, however, absolutely not been your standard new school launch – and there is a bigger picture.

Up front – what will make this school the first choice for many parents is scale and size. This is a genuinely small school – and it will, even after growing again to full capcity, never exceed its maximum role of 440 children. FS streams are capped at 40 children in each year, and in Years 1 – 6 the total year streams are capped at 60 children. Many schools claim to offer small [...]

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June 25, 2016

Smart Vision School, Al Barsha 2

Smart Vision School is located in the heart of Al Barsha 2 – and, as a new school, Vision stands out for being a school that actually exists in nearly complete form. Prospective parents can actually visit the school – and not have to depend on off- plan drawings in making decisions for the future of their child(ren)’s education.

The English National Curriculum school is now open to applications for places between FS1 to Year 4 starting in September 2016. Phased launch of future grades to Year 13 will follow. Eventually all-through provision will take students through complete all-through British education from the Early Year Foundation Stage (EYFS) to IGCSE and A [...]

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June 23, 2016

GEMS Founders School, Al Barsha South

Updated January 2017

GEMS Founders School(GFS) was established as an international UK curriculum school in September 2016, promising a “reasonably priced world-class education” meeting “the high standard of education that GEMS Education embodies.”

Founders offers an all-through English National Curriculum to IGCSE and A Level for students from FS1 to Year 13, between 3 and 19 years.

In build, GEMS advised us, and our sister site, whichschooladvisor, that Founders was being modeled on its family of Winchester schools. This, however, we felt in practice, told us little as the “Winchester” brand covers a multitude of very different schools from the fabulous, [...]

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June 16, 2016

GEMS FirstPoint School, The Villa, Dubailand

Updated November 2016

GEMS FirstPoint is a very interesting school in a multitude of areas – and it is also, importantly, a very good one. So what sets it apart. There are two defining features that standout and which we believe will be of particular interest to prospective parents.

First, with FirstPoint, GEMS has set up a Tier 1 premium British School, but set the fees, deliberately, at the very lowest level of the fee structures we typically associate with this class of schools.  The following graphic is taken from its own marketing literature:

When you average the fees over thirteen years, the school offers a considerable value proposition for [...]

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June 14, 2016

Cranleigh Abu Dhabi, Saadiyat Cultural District, Saadiyat Island

Updated February 2017

One of very few WhichSchoolAdvisor.com “Good Schools” (its highest award), 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. Cranleigh Abu Dhabi is, for us, a school that that has been quite extraordinarily successful in meeting the ambition, almost vocation, of its Founding Headmaster, Brendan Law, to create an education for children that begins and ends with each child’s personal journey. It is hard to think of another school in the Emirates that has so successfully, and inspirationally, drawn on and captured [...]

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May 29, 2016

Fujairah Private Academy, Fujairah

Mooted to be one of, if not the best school in Fujairah, the Fujairah Private Academy (FPA) is certainly its most prestigious. The school is owned by the government of Fujairah, and the rulers of the Emirate play a significant role in school governance. The school’s honorary patron is His Highness Shaikh Mohammed Bin Hamad Al Sharqi, Crown Prince of Fujairah who founded the school in 1982.

The school itself occupies beautifully designed Arabic buildings, their stone facades carefully designed to blend with the extraordinarily beautiful Hajar mountains that provide their backdrop.

FPA provides an English National Curriculum all-through education to students between FS [...]

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May 16, 2016

Ranches Primary School, Arabian Ranches 2

Updated November 2016

We wish it happened more often that a new school launching in the UAE opens to see everything coming together so well, and so quickly, for its children.

Getting FS, Primary education right, choosing the right school for our young children, is such an important responsibility for parents. Too often the temptation is to think it is all about what happens later with SATS and IGCSE, then A Level or IB – but everything is set up at this younger age when hearts and minds are so open to learning.

Meeting  inquisitiveness head-on, and individually, gives each child the chance to develop all the parts of their intellect, as well as the softer, but [...]

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May 12, 2016

GEMS Royal Dubai School, Al Mizhar 1, Mirdif

GEMS Royal Dubai School (GRDS) is a KHDA rated “Outstanding” school, established in 2005, providing an FS to Year 6 British, English National Curriculum based education to children between the ages of 3 and 11.

Parents have a choice of slipstream to either IGCSE/International A Level based GEMS FirstPoint School – The Villa or IGCSE/International Baccalaureate based alternatives at GEMS Wellington Academy Silicon Oasis, GEMS International School Al Khail and GEMS Wellington Academy Al Khail.

We believe that parents should not underestimate the strength of the school, which in 2016-17 scored an exceptionally impressive “Outstanding” rating in 28 of a total possible [...]

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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 16, 2016

Queen International School, Hor Al Anz East

Updated November 2016

The biggest statement made by Queen International School is found in its (arguably) gaudy front building design. Whilst not to all tastes, at least it says something about the school. Elsewhere the provision of public information is wholly inadequate, failing accepted standards of school communication significantly, leaving prospective parents with little on which to base a decision or otherwise to shortlist the school.

The majority of links on the school’s web site lead nowhere, what little information there is dates from 2014, updated information links to a discipline policy advising parents of a newly strengthened school approach to unacceptable [...]

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