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April 30, 2016

Raha International School, Al Raha Gardens, Khalifa City A

Updated January 2017

As of May 2016, Raha International School [RIS] is one of just three schools in Abu Dhabi to have achieved the “Band A. High Performing. Outstanding” school award from the Abu Dhabi Education Council (ADEC) under the education inspectorate’s Irtiqaa programme of independent school inspections. Prospective parents should note too that RIS is fully and impressively inclusive – the school does not discriminate  Fully inclusive. The school does not discriminate on grounds of disability, Special Educational Needs [SEN], nationality, additional language status or sex – and all applications are considered fairly on a “first come, first [...]

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January 26, 2016

GEMS Modern Academy, Nad Al Sheba 3

Updated February 2017

“The mark of a progressive society is that it is an inclusive one.” Nargish Khambatta, Principal, GEMS Modern Academy

GEMS Dubai Modern Academy is an outstanding school – and now a pioneering one. The school took the extremely bold step of applying for, and achieving, International Baccalaureate status (teaching of the IB Diploma began in 2014), a high risk, trailblazing strategy for an outstanding school already punching above its weight in an Indian, hitherto ICSCE-only curriculum school.

So radically broadening the choice of post 16 options to include the International Baccalaureate option is a risk; the Geneva imported IB [...]

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January 16, 2016

Repton School Dubai, Nad Al Sheba 3

Updated February 2017

Repton School Dubai polarises views. Positively, for the second year, it has now, justifiably in our view, secured the KHDA’s second award of Outstanding (2015, 2016) after 6 years of consistent and impressive improvement as a “Good” school. However, Repton is also within a whisker of being the most expensive school in Dubai, measured in comparable day fees, this placing significant pressures on the school to also provide an education that is no less than exceptional, and one that should arguably be available to all children that meet its qualifying criteria for acceptance. Only GEMS World Academy (GWA), reviewed here, two of the Kings [...]

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December 18, 2015

Al Bateen Secondary School, Al Manseer

“What really makes this school wonderful? Our students. ADEC “Outstanding” rating notwithstanding, it is our students that are the heartbeat of the school – academic, confident, independent, caring, open minded, tolerant, balanced, creative and high achieving. Al Bateen students are locally educated; internationally competitive.”

David Hutson, Principal, Al Bateen Secondary School [quoted in whichschooladvisor, 2016]

Opened on its (fabulous) purpose built site in September 2011, Al Bateen Secondary School is hugely innovative, combining the best of a British (English National) curriculum to (I)GCSE with the choice for students, post-16, of [...]

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December 7, 2015

Dubai International Academy, Emirates Hills

The first school in the UAE to offer the Geneva based International Baccalaureate (IB), and in full across its Primary Years Programme (PYP), Middle Years Programme (MYP) and Diploma Programme (DP), the Dubai International Academy is innovative, well-established and academic. Of its many successes, the achievement in 2013 of one of its students, Xanita Saayman (now at the University of Toronto), of being the first DIA student, and one of only 108 worldwide, to attain the perfect score of 45/45 in the IB Diploma Programme, is particularly notable.

Opening in 2005 with more than 500 students from 55 countries, and an equally diverse faculty of more than 50 members of 18 [...]

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November 23, 2015

GEMS Dubai American Academy, Al Barsha

Updated April 2017

The following review provides historical context for the merger of GEMS Nations Academy and the KHDA Outstanding Dubai American Academy (DAA) due to complete in September 2017. The merger will see the launch of a new school, Dubai American Academy – Nations Campus,  blending the flagship facilities and faculty investment of GEMS Nations with the historically outstanding teaching and achievements of Dubai’s premium US curricular school.

GEMS Dubai American Academy (DAA) is the only school in Dubai following an American curriculum to have been awarded an “Outstanding” rating by the Dubai Schools Inspection Bureau. The accolade has been [...]

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November 13, 2015

JESS, Jumeirah English Speaking School, Arabian Ranches

Updated February 2017

“The best Mathematics teachers, for instance, are often those who didn’t get first class honours but who got thirds, struggled all the way but can empathise strongly with the struggle of children who take time to understand key concepts.”

Mark Steed. Director of Jumeirah English Speaking School (JESS),  as quoted in “The Education Interview,”

With maximum class sizes of 22, and an Outstanding rating almost from birth, JESS Arabian Ranches’ (Jumeirah English Speaking School Arabian Ranches) biggest difficulty has always been turning parents away – especially those that have chosen [...]

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