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Al Muna Primary School, Al Markaziyah – The Review
WSA Good School
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Review

Al Muna Primary School, Al Markaziyah – The Review

by January 20, 2016
Strengths

• A1 Outstanding ADEC School
• Charismatic, inspirational, caring leadership
• “Pivotal” Principal/Headteacher
• Exceptionally happy school environment
• Highest levels of academic attainment
• Extremely high value-added with excellent SEN and G&T provision
• Transparent fee structure
• Outstanding facilities
• High numbers off staff to every child
• 95% plus attendance
• Investors-in-People accredited
• Outstanding capacity for planning and implementing improvement

Weaknesses

• Waiting list

Rating
Our Rating
User Rating
Rate Here
Academic
A+
A+
Value
A+
A+
ExtraCurricula
A
A
Languages
A-
A-
Sports
A-
A
Arts & Drama
A
A+
Teaching
A+
A+
Communications
A
A
Warmth
A+
A+
Differentiation
A
A+
SEND Provision
A
A
Scl Community
A+
A+
Scl Facilities
A
A+
Opportunities

• whichschooladvisor.com flag ship primary
• At least top-two best primary school in the Emirate
• Life changing foundational school experience for children
• A benchmark for outstanding primary school provision in the UAE

A+
Our Rating
A+
User Rating
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Is this school on your shortlist?
Top of shortlist
40%
In my Top 5
20%
Shortlisted
20%
A possibility
20%
Pass
0%
No way
0%

Updated July 2017- Al Muna Primary School Fees and Context

“Wherever they move on to, these children will have been fortunate to have attended a school that has such a warm, friendly and clearly inclusive environment. This is a really happy place.” WhichSchoolAdvisor.com independent school inspection 2016-17

Finalist in the WhichSchoolAdvisor.com “Happiest School Competition in the UAE 2015,” in 2016 Al Muna Primary School also became the very first published school in Abu Dhabi to receive the ADEC inspectorate’s Outstanding A1 award in its “Highest Performing Schools” category, a benchmark achievement that places it today in an elite group of schools to follow.

These now also include Al Bateen (Secondary) and Al Mushrif (Primary) schools, both of which, like Al Muna Primary School, are owned by Aldar Academies. The detail of the ADEC findings are fully published in April 2016. This is the first time any school has been awarded an “Outstanding” rating since ADEC began inspections in 2009.

Al Muna achieved the top A1 grading in a clean sweep of Outstanding educational provision across all ADEC’s six core performance standards – Student’s Achievement; Student’s Personal and Social Development; Teaching and Assessment, Curriculum; Protection, Care, Guidance and Support; and Leadership and Management.

The school’s principal, Mr Wayne Howsen is known for his “extraordinary” capacity to inspire children and teaching staff – and a radical, principled approach to teaching that places children at the centre of the educational experience above all else. His leadership of a UK-based school prior to joining Al Muna Primary sufficiently inspired parents to write to newspapers to try and retain him, such was his impact on that school. Parental feedback to whichschooladvisor echoes his continuing ability to create exceptionally empowering school environments for children. Under his leadership the school’s teachers deliver education through a three-pillar prism designed to inspire in children the capacity at every step to “Learn, Live and Laugh.”

In 2015/16 WhichSchoolAdvisor.com found a school with a “very inclusive” learning approach for children with Special Educational Needs [SEN] “generous staffing” levels; an “immersive approach” to the teaching of Arabic and “carefully differentiated” teaching. As tellingly it describes how the stage is set for children entering the school each day by the space set-aside at its entrance for “ducks, chickens, tortoises and rabbits” these designed to link the school with the natural world and inspire in the children empathy and nurturing.

IMG_3564 copy

Facilities are Tier 1 at the school including extensive music, drama and art facilities; specialist teaching rooms; a research laboratory; graphic design area; music recording studio; recital hall; multi-purpose sports hall; dance studio; 25m swimming pool; very large library; OASIS seminar rooms for specialist SEN provision; a full-sized football pitch; and basketball courts.

Al Muna-English

 

After-school activities are all painstakingly focused around Creativity, Action and Service [CAS], these ranging from creating fabulous “inventions” with Lego to sailing and wider community engagement.

The school’s fee structure, whilst at the premium end of the sector, offers value. Al Muna is a school which, whilst not statistically calculating its added value, offers pupils, many of which arrive at the school without any knowledge off the English language or in need of support at either end of the attainment spectrum (SEN/G&T), child development at the very highest levels. We particularly like the transparency, honesty and sensitivity of the fee structure that offers identical fees each year; too many schools seek to increase fees annually on a spurious basis seeking to “blind parents with science” or unfairly weight fees in later years pressurising parents who are already “captured” within a school. It is in smaller details like this that a truly Outstanding school proves its metal. It is worth noting too that Aldar Academies, the school’s owner, although a private for-profit company, actually re-invests all its property into its schools and their development.

Al Muna Primary is a school which, quite exceptionally, does not put a foot wrong. That it does so by creating an environment in which all its children feel able to make mistakes as they learn without worry, innovate, create and laugh – learning in the fullest sense of the word – are highlights of a school operating at the very top of its game.

Al Muna Primary School achieved whichschooladvisor Good School status in 2013-14, 2014-15 and 2016-17.

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 our sister site WhichSchoolAdvisor.
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Details to consider
2016/17 Overall ADEC / KHDA Rating

Outstanding

2016/17 Rating Primary / Elementary

Outstanding

2016/17 Rating Secondary / Middle

NA

2016/17 Post 16 / High

NA

2015/16 Overall KHDA / ADEC Rating

Outstanding

Type of school

Private, for-profit*. Profits are re-invested into schools and their development

WSA Good School

Yes

Full WSA Review
Average Cost Per Year

FS1: 41,580
FS2: 41,580
YEAR 1: 41,580
YEAR 2: 41,580
YEAR 3: 41,580
YEAR 4: 41,580
YEAR 5: 41,580
YEAR 6: 41,580
YEAR 7: NA
YEAR 8: NA
YEAR 9: NA
YEAR 10: NA
YEAR 11: NA
YEAR 12: NA
YEAR 13: NA

Curriculum

National Curriculum of England

Selective

No

Waiting list

Yes

Value Added

Not Published (Very High)

Number of Students

583

Teacher to Student Ratio

1:13

Largest nationality teachers

British

Teacher turnover

Not published (low)

Year opened

2012

Location

Al Markaziyah, Abu Dhabi

Student composition

583 students on roll:
305 boys
278 girls
157 Foundation Stage (67 boys and 90 girls)
153 in Years 1 and 2 (79 boys and 74 girls)
273 in Years 3  ‐  6 (159 boys and 124 girls)
Most students come from families where English is not the first language.
Many students start school with limited formal spoken English.  
54 nationalities:
27% Emirati
9% Indian
7% Egyptian
5% American
5% Australia
72% Muslim
12% of students in the Foundation stage have language difficulties
7% of students in the rest of the school have language difficulties
152 Special Educational Needs (SEN)
44 Gifted and Talented (G&T)  

Gender

Mixed co-educational

School canteen

No

Owner

Aldar Academies

Admissions Telephone

00971 2 501 4777

Web Address
Attainment Nur SEM

100%

Attainment Pri SEM

100%

Attainment Sec SEM

NA

Attainment Post-16 SEM

NA

Progress Nur SEM

100%

Progress Pri SEM

100%

Progress Sec SEM

NA

Progress Post-16 SEM

NA

Arabic Native Primary Results (Native)

100%

Arabic Secondary Results (Native)

NA

Arabic Post-16 Results (Native)

NA

Arabic Primary Results (Add.)

75%

Arabic Secondary Results (Add.)

NA

Arabic Post-16 Results (Add.)

NA

Islamic St. Primary Results

100%

Islamic St. Secondary Results

NA

Islamic St. Post-16 Results

NA

Leadership

100%

Community

100%

Facilities

100%

Quality of teaching

100%

Student personal responsibility

100%

Quality of curriculum

100%

School Governance

100%

SEN Provision

100%

About The Author
Jon Westley
Jon Westley is the Acting Editor of SchoolsCompared.com and the International Editor of WhichSchoolAdvisor.com. You can email him at jonathanwestley [at] schoolscompared.com

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Academic
Value
ExtraCurricula
Languages
Sports
Arts & Drama
Teaching
Communications
Warmth
Differentiation
SEND Provision
Scl Community
Scl Facilities