Dubai to add 27 private schools and 63,000 seats by 2016

By 2017 Dubai will have 196 private schools with a capacity of over 341,000 students, the KHDA said.

A total of 27 new private schools offering 63,000 seats will open in Dubai by the end of 2016, Ahmed Darwish, chief of the Knowledge and Human Development Authority's (KHDA) Regulations and Permits Commission, has said.

Among the new schools recently announced by the KHDA are, Amled School in Al Quoz, German International School Dubai, Dubai British School Jumeirah Park, Hartland International School near Downtown Dubai, Ranches Primary School and the Swiss International Scientific School near Dubai Creek.

The Swiss International Scientific School (SISD) will become the first in Dubai to offer Swiss qualifications, according to the KHDA. According to their website, SISD will have the option of a bilingual education in French or German, or of studying languages within an English section. SISD students will leave with an International Baccalaureate.

The German International School Dubai - which is being relocated from Al Quoz to Academic City - has been consistently ranked as "Good" by the KHDA since the 2011-2012 academic year, the second-highest category in its rating system.

By 2017 Dubai will have 196 private schools with a capacity of over 341,000 students, the KHDA said on Sunday.

Competition among private schools

Dubai's private school sector has grown significantly over the last several years. A total of 18 new private schools became operational during the 2011-2012 and 2013-2014 academic years, providing the emirate with an additional 19,000 seats. Last year, 11 new private schools opened up, with a total capacity of 25,000 seats.

Darwish noted that the KHDA is currently reviewing over 60 applications for new private schools.

"This creates competitiveness among the new private schools within Dubai. Private schools then present special packages and promotional offers to attract parents of new and existing students and to occupy the highest rate of seats available," he said. "The offers include attractive installment packages and discounts for families which have more than one child in the same school. As a result, parents benefit from the competition created amongst private schools in Dubai."

Kalthoom Al Balooshi, executive director of the KHDA, said that the increasing number of private schools is helping Dubai attain the goals it has set for itself for 2020.

"This will help in reaching the emirate's goal of having 360,000 seats by 2020. Furthermore, the new private schools have contributed to private education by providing a variety and range of good to outstanding quality education," she said.

"In order to establish the best available educational opportunities for Dubai's private education sector, we used a variety of channels to communicate with more than 200 investors and education providers inside and outside of the UAE," Al Balooshi added. "This has helped in obtaining international school branches within Dubai and once again, adds to the choice of curriculums for parents to choose from."

Currently, 87 per cent of Dubai private school seats are occupied by students (about 35,000) who come from other emirates.

"We also encourage the good and outstanding schools to expand within the emirate by opening new branches, at the same time attracting good quality schools from other emirates to establish branches in Dubai," Al Balooshi noted.

Source: Khaleej Times

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