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Robots, AI and the End of Teachers as We Know Them? School Leaders Talk Technology and Predict the Future of Schools in the UAE. Part 1.

Robots, AI and the End of Teachers as We Know Them? School Leaders Talk Technology and Predict the Future of Schools in the UAE. Part 1.

by Jon WestleyJune 1, 2020

Robots, AI and the End of Teachers as We Know Them? The Future of Schools Laid Bare.

In the first of our second new series of video interviews exclusively from SchoolsCompared.comTVTM with school leaders across the UAE, we ask what the school of the future will look like. Will there still be teachers and schools as we know them at all? In the next decade, will robots and VR have taken over many of the responsibilities of traditional teachers – or are schools going to remain much the same, even as the rest of society is increasingly transformed by AI and machines? Will schools get better? Or worse? And how quickly will our children begin to see major change?

In the following weeks we aim to build a definitive picture of the future of schools – from those who are running our schools. What is being done now? What are they planning? Has the rapid move to technology as a result of Covid 19 begun to focus minds and planning?

Let’s take one big issue today: class sizes. Class sizes matter to us as parents because they indicate just how much attention each child is likely to get from their teachers. In the future, technology, almost certainly, will become much more prevalent in the classroom with more on-line learning. Positively, this should mean much more individualised learning. If it works, education should much more accurately respond to child needs. And teachers should be freed up to have much more time to spend 1 on 1 with our children. Education, if this works, will be fundamentally better, not because technology will replace teachers – but because technology will enable them teachers to invest more time with each individual child.

We will be releasing these guides in blocks of three video interviews. By the end of the Future School series we aim to have covered the broadest possible range of school types, from premium Tier Ones to value schools – and across different curricular or specialism. The aim will be to give parents the strongest possible idea of what will change, when, how – and what it will mean for their children.


The Questions we Asked …

Schools of the Future. Photograph of internet beakdown and the risks of education online.

We asked school leaders:

  • To explain their background and leadership experience
  • To describe the top 3 technological development coming down the track for schools in the UAE and their impact
  • What problems these technological changes will solve – and how?
  • To choose the single most important positive change coming to schools within the next 10 years and to explain to parents how it will transform the education of our children.

None of the school leaders we interviewed were made aware of how other school leaders answered these questions.


School Leaders Predict the Future of Schools in the UAE Part 1.

Schools of the Future? School Leaders predict the future of School in the UAE. Photograph shows children seated in front of giant screen with a robots head replacing their teacher.

Interview 1. Neal Oates. Vice Principal and Technology Leader. Recipient of the 2018 Microsoft E2 Global Educator Award. Star International School Mirdif.

Our independent review of Star International School Mirdif can be found here.

The official Star International School Mirdif web site can be found here.


Interview 2. Mark Ford. Principal. The English College Dubai.

Our independent review of the English College Dubai can be found here.

The official web site for The English College Dubai can be found here.


Interview 3: Brett Girven. Principal. The Arbor School.

Our independent review of The Arbor School in Dubai can be found here.

The official Arbor School in Dubai web site can be found here.

© 2020. All rights reserved.

About The Author
Jon Westley
Jon Westley is the Editor of and UK. You can email him at jonathanwestley [at]

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