Once the administrative details for a family move to Dubai are settled, it will be time to choose a school in Dubai for your children.
While there are many schools, choosing international schools in Dubai has many advantages, which we will detail in this article.
In Dubai, note that all schools are private and charge tuition fees.
Why Send Your Children to International School in Dubai?
Choosing a good school for your child guarantees success in the future. Here are the pros and cons of international schools in Dubai.
There are several advantages to sending your child to an international school in Dubai:
- Remain enrolled in the international system. Thus, if you return to the United States, your child can continue his studies without any problem.
- Each school has a school transportation system.
- Each school offers extra-curricular activities. Learning about the activities provided in advance is important to guarantee your child a place.
International schools in Dubai are not without their drawbacks:
- The canteen system is different from ours: it is up to parents to prepare a snack for their children.
- Some schools select students according to their origin or religion.
- The cost of the schools is very high and varies from $2,500 to $25,000 per year.
Particularities of Schools in Dubai
The schools in Dubai have certain particularities compared to those in the United States.
First, the timetable is different since classes start early but end at 1 pm. This is why extra-curricular activities are particularly valued.
Another surprising difference is that the entire curriculum takes place in the same school, from kindergarten to high school!
As for tuition fees, it is sometimes possible to negotiate them according to your work contract. Ask your employer about the possibilities. It is also possible, in some cases, to benefit from a scholarship.
Finally, each new student must take a placement test to determine if they are ready to enter the requested class.
What is the KHDA?
The KHDA (Knowledge and Human Development Authority) is a government agency that monitors schools in Dubai.
Its purpose is to monitor criteria such as hygiene, safety, and health to ensure consistency of education among schools.
It is possible to find information about each school on the KHDA website.
How to Register a Child in an International School in Dubai?
Please note that enrollment should be considered in advance. Many parents start enrolling their children in international schools in October for the next school year. It is therefore important to find out in advance to secure a place for your child.
You can go through a service firm if you wish to be accompanied. The latter helps USA residents with all the administrative procedures in Dubai, including their children’s school registration.
Alternatively, you can contact the schools directly to find out about their registration procedures.
Required Documents for School Registration
The list of documents to be provided differs according to each school. However, you will generally need at least the following documents to register your child.
- An official birth certificate in English or translated into Arabic (issued less than three months ago)
- Child’s health record
- Transcript of grades from the previous year.
Parents must also provide proof of a resident visa. Do not hesitate to support your application with a letter of recommendation from the previous institution.
Given the cost of schooling in Dubai, expatriate students can apply for a grant from the US government if they are registered with the Consulate General of the United States in the United Arab Emirates.
As in the United States, the grant depends on the parents’ financial situation. The scholarship is valid for children aged 3 up to high school graduation.
However, the scholarship is only valid if the student is enrolled in one of the international schools.
Again, it is necessary to apply in advance. We advise you to submit your application to the United States Consulate General between January and March. You can make an appointment by e-mail.
Good to know: do not forget to renew your application yearly to confirm your eligibility.
In addition to the international schools in Dubai, discover the specificities of the school vacations.
Frequently Asked Questions About International Schools in Dubai
The major advantage of sending your child to an international school in Dubai is that your child will remain in the international school system. Their diplomas will be valid when they return to the United States.
Prices vary depending on the level of schooling and the school, but you should expect to pay between AED 24,000 (about $6,530) to AED 99,000 (about $26,950).