The UAE Education System. Schools in the United Arab Emirates

The Education System in the UAE made education compulsory for all Emiratis children aged five and above, including expat residents. Primary education and secondary education in institutions are provided free for every UAE national up to the age of 18.

The UAE Education System 

  • Nursery Education – Nursery education in Dubai begins at a tender age with children of eighteen months to two years getting admitted to nursery schools. Basic English language speaking skills are developed in students of this age group.
  • Kindergarten Education – Children of four to five years are admitted to Kindergarten where they get taught various subjects like English, Arabic, Mathematics, Music, and Art. At this level ‘Religion’ is also part of the syllabus and students are taught their respective religion.
  • Primary Education – Students admitted to primary school are generally around six years. English is the main language of instruction in most primary schools. However, many other schools teach in Arabic and some in foreign languages such as Hindi, French as well Russian.
  • Secondary Education – After completing primary school, students move to secondary or high schools. There are two kinds of high schools in Dubai, the ordinary schools that focus on academic subjects and the technical schools which focus on imparting specific skills in students.

The “UAE Ministry of Education” is taking great strides in overhauling the education system to cater specifically for the high percentage of expatriate families that calls the Emirates home.

The education system has received international conceding for its efforts to move to smart learning strategies via the “Mohammed Bin Rashid Smart Learning Program “(MBRSLP)

The new UAE education model predicts internationally accredited bilingual teachers to cater to the expatriates moving to the UAE and the growing UAE population.

Popular Schools in the UAE

There are many international schools and universities in UAE to meet the demand for higher education by the increasing number of expatriate communities and students.

These schools offer different syllabus ranging from Indian CBSE, Indian Certificate of Secondary Education ICSE, A-level programs, to the British General Certificate of Secondary Education GCSE, as well as International Baccalaureate (IB).

The most popular schools for expatriates in Dubai include:

  • Dubai College
  • Dubai English Speaking Private College
  • Dubai International Academy
  • Gems Dubai American Academy
  • Gems Jumeriah Primary School
  • Gems Modern Academy
  • Gems Royal Dubai School
  • Gems Wellington International School
  • Jumeirah College
  • Jumeirah English Speaking School

Indian Schools in Dubai

With a significant percentage of Indian expatriates residing in Dubai, there are several Indian schools as well in Dubai’s education sector. These are some of the most famous Indian schools in Dubai.

  • The Indian High School – The Indian High School was started in 1961 as the first school to incorporate Indian syllabus in its curriculum. It is affiliated to the Central Board of Secondary Education (CBSE) and has been awarded outstanding ratings by Dubai’s Knowledge Human Development Authority (KHDA).
  • Delhi Private School – Also known as DPS, the Delhi Private School, is one of the best and the most sought-after Indian Schools in Dubai. DPS imparts CBSE based curriculum to the pupils.
  •  Modern Academy – GEMS Modern Academy is another top Indian school in Dubai. The school was started in 1986. It is affiliated to the Council for the Indian School of Certificate Examinations.
  • GEMS Our Own English High School – Founded in 1968, the OOEHS is among the oldest educational providers in Dubai that still maintains its popularity among the Indian expatriates. The school is affiliated with the Central Board of Secondary Education.

Other Indian schools that continue to tempt Indian expatriates due to the quality of their education sytstem are Rajagiri International School, Springdales, The Millennium School, Ambassador School,  and JSS International.

Documents for UAE School Admission

You need the following documents to register your child successfully at one of the Dubai schools or colleges.

  1. Application forms from the school.
  2. Copies of student and parent’s passports and Dubai visa pages.
  3. Passport photos of the student.
  4. Xerox of student’s birth certificate.
  5. School records for the last two years.
  6. Health card or evidence of medical insurance.
  7. Immunization records and medical history.
  8. A transfer certificate or letter of recommendation from the student’s previous school.

The type of curriculum, style of teaching, and language are important deciding factors for expat parents when looking for a school. Once your child is admitted to a school in UAE, it may be a good idea to hire a private tutor, especially during the initial months, to help them adjust to the new schooling environment. This is all about The school and education system in UAE.

The top image was taken in Leiden, Netherlands and it’s a photo by Rachid Oucharia on Unsplash.