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best schools in dubai

Last Updated on November 12, 2022 by chioma

Dubai is an amazing city with a lot to offer. The people are friendly, the beaches are beautiful, and there are so many things to do. It’s a great place to go if you’re looking for a vacation or a place to live permanently. And if you’re looking for schools, Dubai has some of the best in the world. The Dubai American Academy (DA) is an international school that offers both kindergarten through 12th grade. It’s located at Al Khawaneej Road #3 and has over 4,000 students enrolled. DA was started in 1997 by an American family who wanted their kids to learn Arabic in an American-style school. Now it’s one of the most popular international schools in Dubai—and it’s also one of the most expensive private schools in the world! However, if you can afford it then this is definitely worth checking out because they have some really great programs offered here: art classes taught by professional artists who work at museums like the Louvre; science labs where students can dissect animals; sports teams like gymnastics and track & field; language classes including ESL classes for non-native speakers; music lessons for kids who want to learn guitar or piano; and so much more!

You may find it hard to access the right information on the internet, so we are here to help you in the following article, providing the best and updated information on best schools in dubai. Read on to learn more. We at collegelearners have all the information that you need about best schools in dubai.

best schools in dubai

If you are planning a move to Dubai with your family, there are doubtless many questions on your mind. Chief among them, especially if you have young children, is what is the best school in Dubai and where you can find the best schools in Dubai. There are several excellent educational institutions around the city, and the following are considered to be among the top. They have been awarded the highest rating of ‘Outstanding’ by the Knowledge & Human Development Authority (KHDA), offer an internationally recognized and accredited curriculum, and are easily accessible from some of Dubai’s finest neighborhoods.

1. King’s School

There are three Kings’ School campuses in Dubai, each of which is ideally located near some of the city’s finest communities. Kings’ School Dubai in Umm Suqeim 3 is perfect for families living in the Jumeirah district, Kings’ School Al Barsha is a short drive away for residents of Jumeirah Village Circle and Arabian Ranches, and Kings’ School Nad Al Sheba is roughly 20 minutes from District One and Al Barari. All three schools are highly reputed, offering the English National Curriculum. Second languages, sports, music and even Islamic education help to round out the school’s educational offering and the use of cutting-edge technology makes learning easier and more fun. Students are encouraged to try everything from cooking to photography, and the school even has its own business club for budding entrepreneurs.

School fees range from AED 43,619 for Foundation Years up to AED 66,383 for Year 6.

2. Dubai International Academy

Dubai International Academy, also known as DIA, has a diverse student body comprising more than 80 nationalities and follows the International Baccalaureate (IB) curriculum. The school offers both primary and secondary education, divided into three programs – Primary Years, Middle Years and Diploma. The academic performance of DIA is among the best in the region, and the vast majority of its students get accepted into renowned universities such as Princeton and Yale. The school emphasizes a well-rounded education program, with plenty of extra-curricular options, including an Eco Club, a Model United Nations, music, art and sport.

Dubai School fees at DIA vary depending on year level. Annual Fees starts at AED 45,604 for KG and go up to AED 79,995 for Year 13. There is also an AED 4,500 fee for ESL (English as a Second Language) students who require additional support for English in school.

3. Gems Wellington International School

Gems Wellington is part of the Gems Education Group and is one of its better-known schools. The school follows a GCSE and IGCSE-based curriculum until Year 11, followed by an International Baccalaureate Diploma program in Years 12 and 13. Students of Gems Wellington have gone on to be accepted into universities such as Cambridge and Stanford. Students benefit from the presence of a dedicated guidance team to choose their IB courses as well as a University Guidance Counsellor who can advise them on further studies. The school also participates in the Duke of Edinburgh’s International Award, a youth award that encourages students to set goals and challenges for themselves to foster personal growth.

Annual tuition fees at Wellington depend on the Year level. It starts at AED 43,941 for FS 2 students and goes up to AED 95,597 for Year 13 students.

4. Repton School

Located in Nad Al Sheba 3, Repton is a co-ed British curriculum school that operates as both a boarding and day school. Repton follows the English National Curriculum through to Year 11, after which it offers students the unique option to continue with the same curriculum until Year 13 or pursue an International Baccalaureate Diploma. Oxford and UCLA are among the universities that have accepted students from Repton, and the school had 94% of students pass the IB diploma in 2017. Despite being the largest school in the region, Repton maintains a good ratio between students and teachers, creating a more balanced and personalised educational environment. Extra-curricular activities are emphasised, including arts, drama, music and sport.

School fees heavily vary depending on academic level and whether students are day or boarding pupils. For day pupils, school fees range from AED 52, 000 to AED 95,000. For boarding pupils, fees, tuition, and boarding, range from AED 130,000 to AED 164,000.

5. Swiss International Scientific School

Located in Dubai Healthcare City, Swiss International Scientific School is a top-tier IB (International Baccalaureate) school which operates as a day school and as a boarding school. It is relatively new, with a large Primary program that goes up to Grade 5 and a Middle Years program that goes up to Grade 11. There is also an Early Years program for children aged 3 to 5. Multiculturalism and diversity are two core elements of the school, which offers additional language courses from Grade 1 onwards. Students can choose the bilingual or English+ program. The former is a mix of English and French (or German) courses, while the latter focuses primarily on English with French (or German) taught as a second language. There are other language options as well, including Arabic, Mandarin and Spanish. Swiss International Scientific School offers a very extensive list of extracurricular activities, including sports, a TED club, rhythmic gymnastics and robotics. The campus features an Olympic-sized swimming pool, a running track, aerobics studios and multiple soccer fields as well as a large library.

School fees vary depending on year level. Fees start at AED 60,000 for Pre-Kindergarten students and go up to AED 120,000 for Grade 11 students. This fee also covers teacher resources, one uniform, examination fees, internal after-school activities, and Early Years childcare.

6. Jumeirah English Speaking School

Jumeirah English Speaking School (JESS) is located in Arabian Ranches and is one of the most sought-after schools in the area.  It has been on the list of top schools since 2011 and is one of the few schools in the city to have dedicated support and resources for students with special needs.. Students who graduated from JESS have been accepted into many of the top-ranking universities worldwide. The school follows the English National Curriculum, and is known for its consistently stellar academic performance, with the number of students receiving an A or A* grade in their GCSES and IGCSES rising by double digit percentages over the past two years. There are numerous facilities around the campus, from sports fields and courts to temperature-controlled swimming pools, a purpose-built music centre with a recording studio, dance and drama studios, a 500-seater auditorium and an outdoor amphitheatre. Extracurricular activities change each term, giving students the opportunity to experience new and unique options.

School fees start at AED 39,030 for the first Foundation year, going up to AED 91,950 for Years 12 and 13. The school operates on a ‘debenture’ system, accepting personal and corporate sponsorships to manage fee payments.

7. Nord Anglia International School

Nord Anglia School is located in Al Barsha South, which puts it a short drive away from Jumeirah VIllage Circle and a 15-minute drive from Emirates Hills. It is one of 35 schools in the world operating under the Nord Education group. The school follows the English National Curriculum and has an International Baccalaureate option at the higher grade levels. It has a strong language learning program, offering French, German, Spanish, Mandarin and Arabic as second languages. Music is another key subject, as Nord Anglie is associated with The Juilliard School. Other extracurricular activities include sports, art, community activities and robotics.

School fees range from AED 62,160 for Foundation Years 1 and 2 to AED 94,000 for Years 12 and 13.

8. GEMS Dubai American Academy

Founded in 1997, GEMS Dubai American Academy is one of the most sought-after schools in Dubai and the only school following an American Curriculum to receive an ‘Outstanding’ rating from the KHDA. The school is located in Al Barsha, which is a hub of exceptional education options and is in proximity to several residential communities. It also offers an International Baccalaureate diploma at the high school level. Emphasis is on building good character alongside a strong educational background, supported by a large variety of extracurricular activities. The school contains an Olympic-sized pool, a 400-metre running track, a sports hall that can accommodate 3 full-sized basketball courts, music studios, and much more. Students can participate in sports, martial arts, drama, model United Nations and even a Lego club.

Fees are AED 61,190 for kindergarten and are set at a flat rate of AED 86,260 for every other grade. An enrollment fee of 10% must be paid to secure a seat for the following academic year – this fee is non-refundable but can be adjusted with the fees for the year.

Best private schools in Dubai

Dubai English Speaking School (Dess), one of the oldest schools in the country, was established in 1963 in a room of a residential villa in Dubai.

Some predate the UAE. Others are futuristic schools preparing pupils for jobs that don’t exist yet.

In total, 17 private schools in the emirate make it to the top rank.

Dubai is home to 217 private schools offering 18 different curriculums and attended by more than 300,000 pupils, but only 17 of these institutions are ranked outstanding by the Knowledge and Human Development Authority.

Schools are assessed on pupil’s learning outcomes and attainment, provisions for learners, and leadership and management. Schools were last inspected in person by the Dubai School Inspection Bureau (DSIB) in 2019, due to the coronavirus situation. Only a handful of new schools, due to be rated, were inspected in 2022 by DSIB.

This year, Dubai’s private school population increased to more than 300,000 for the first time after growing by more than 14,000 since the start of the academic year.

The National has mapped out Dubai’s top schools:

Dubai College: up to Dh98,000 per year

The UK curriculum not-for-profit school in Al Sufouh is one of the oldest in the city and often touted as one of the best in the emirate.

Founding headmaster Tim Charlton set up the institution in 1978, so British secondary school pupils would not have to return home to the UK.

The teachers have been known to maintain high standards and the school has some members of staff who have worked there since the 1980s.

Dubai College’s fees for years seven to 11 are Dh28,869 per term in the new academic year starting in August. Fees for years 12 and 13 are Dh32,690 per term in the 2022-23 academic year. There are three terms in a school year.

Dubai College’s reception building in 1988. All photos: Dubai College

Jumeirah College: up to Dh91,235 per year

Jumeirah College is a UK curriculum school in Al Safa 1.The school has 1,125 pupils from more than 59 countries.

The school has been ranked outstanding for 10 consecutive years from 2010-2021.

In 2021, pupils at the school landed offers from prestigious universities, including Imperial College London, London School of Economics, University of Oxford and University of Melbourne.

Fees at the school range from Dh72,988 for year seven to Dh91,235 in year 13.

Jumeirah English Speaking School — Al Safa 1 and Arabian Ranches: up to Dh94,805 per year

Jumeirah English Speaking (JESS) follows the UK curriculum and is one of the oldest schools in the emirate.

The school has two branches — one in Al Safa 1 and a second in Arabian Ranches.

The non-profit school was started in an apartment in Deira in 1975 with just 17 pupils. Now the school more than 1,400 pupils in Arabian Ranches and just over 2,000 pupils in Al Safa 1.

The schools place great focus on culture, curricular activities and on ensuring pupils are future-ready.

In August, JESS will raise its primary school fees by 5 per cent but fees at the secondary school will not be changed.

Fees at the school start at Dh39,837 for Foundation 1 grade, rising to Dh94,805 for Grade 13.

Gems Modern Academy: up to Dh68,302 per year

Gems Modern Academy, in Nad Al Sheba, was founded in 1986 and is the only Indian curriculum school in Dubai to be ranked as outstanding by the Knowledge and Human Development Authority.

The school has offered the International Baccalaureate Diploma Programme since 2014.

The school’s vision is to inspire children to be positive change-makers.

Tuition fees start at Dh28,646 in pre-kindergarten and go up to Dh52,427 in grade 12.

Fees for the International Baccalaureate diploma at the same school are Dh68,302 in grades 11 and 12.

Dubai British School: up to Dh73,540 per year

Located in Emirates Hills, Dubai British School has 1,171 pupils and is sought-after by families.

The school has been rated outstanding three years in a row, from 2017 to 2020.

The school is ranked highly for teaching, learning, and meeting the education requirements of pupils.

Fees at the school range from Dh49,026 in foundation stage one to Dh73,540 in Year 13.

Dubai English Speaking School (primary only): up to Dh47,406 per year

Dubai English Speaking School (DESS), one of the oldest schools in the country, was established in 1963 in a room of a residential villa in Dubai.

Dubai’s late Ruler, Sheikh Rashid bin Saeed, in 1967 granted the school land in Oud Metha.

From only a handful of pupils in the villa, about 2,700 pupils now attend DESS and its secondary school arm, Dubai English Speaking College.

For the 2022-23 academic year, fees at DESS will range from Dh38,305 in the foundation stage to Dh47,406 in years one to six.

Flight Lt F Loughman and the founding class of Dubai English Speaking School in 1963. The classroom is an upstairs room of a villa where expatriate workers were housed. All photos: Dubai English Speaking School

Dubai English Speaking College: up to Dh79,222 per year

In 2006, DESS opened its own secondary school, Dubai English Speaking College in Academic City (DESC).

The school was established with an aim of providing quality British education for pupils up to the age of 18 and preparing pupils for entry into university.

DESC caters only to pupils in year 7 to year 13.

The not-for-profit school does not select pupils on an academic basis.

DSIB has rated DESC as outstanding since 2013, considered an impressive feat after having just opened in 2007.

For the 2022-23 academic year, DESC’s fees will range from Dh73,708 in years seven to 11 to Dh79,222 in the sixth form.

Gems Jumeirah Primary School: up to Dh51,511 per year

Gems Jumeirah Primary School in Jumeirah 3 is one of the most sought-after primary schools in the emirate and has been rated ‘outstanding’ since 2010 by the KHDA.

The school offers a bespoke and innovative curriculum that focuses on the British Curriculum while also incorporating best practices from other international curriculums.

Fees at the school start at Dh40,865 in foundation stage one and go up to Dh51,511 in year six.

Gems Dubai American Academy: up to Dh86,260 per year

The only American curriculum school to find a spot on the list of outstanding schools, Gems Dubai American Academy was founded more than 20 years ago.

Located in Barsha South, the school focuses on celebrating diversity, resilience, creativity and driving positive change.

School fees start at Dh61,190 in kindergarten and go up to Dh86,260 for grade one to grade 12.

Lycee Francais International Georges Pompidou Primary: up to Dh29,668 per year

The Lycee Francais International Georges Pompidou Primary (LFIGP) is located in Oud Metha.

LFIGP pupils’ attainment and progress in mathematics have been outstanding across all ages, according to DSIB’s latest quality indicators report.

For the 2022-23 academic year, fees at LFIGP will range from Dh30,000 in the foundation stage to Dh35,021 in years one to six.

Fees will range from Dh44,294 in years seven to 11 to Dh48,093 in the sixth form.

Gems Wellington International School: up to Dh95,597 per year

One of several Gems schools to make it to the outstanding category, the Gems Wellington International School in Al Sufouh offers both the UK curriculum and the International Baccalaureate diploma programme.

The school boasts a 1:13 teacher-to-pupil ratio and an impressively low rate of teacher turnover.

The fees for the next academic year are: foundation years fees start at Dh43,941, with years one to six starting at Dh55,346.

Fees for years 7 to 11 range between Dh76,000- Dh85,870, with those for sixth form reaching Dh95,597.

Horizons English School (primary only): up to Dh40,792 per year

Horizons English school, in Dubai’s Al Wasl area, caters to foundation stage one to Year 6, with almost 1,000 pupils enrolled.

Quality indicators have deemed Horizons’ pupils’ personal and social development as outstanding, while their progress in Arabic as a first language was rated as acceptable for pupils in primary years.

Horizons’ fees range from Dh29,126 for foundation years, to Dh40,792 for years one to six.

Repton School: up to Dh95,000 per year

The Repton in Nad El Sheba is one of three branches in the UAE.

This branch, founded in 2007, has had an outstanding rating on DSIB inspection reports for six years straight, from 2014 up until 2020.

Repton has listed its 2022-2023 fees as follows: the foundation stage fees start at Dh52,863, and years one to six range from Dh59,754 to Dh70,221 and years 7 to 11 reach up to Dh88,000.

The school fees for years 12 and 13 are Dh95,000.

Kings School Dubai (primary only): up to Dh66,383 per year

Located in Umm Suqeim, close to Burj Al Arab, Kings School Dubai offers primary education for children aged 3 to 11.

The original school in a family of three Kings Schools, it has attained an ‘outstanding’ rating by DSIB every year since inspections began.

The fees for the next academic year start at Dh43,619 for the foundation stage, reaching up to Dh66,383 for Year 5.

Kings School Al Barsha: up to Dh97,796 per year

The British curriculum school in Al Barsha differs from its branch in Umm Suqeim, in that it caters to pupils from years FS1 to Year 13.

This is a relatively new school, having opened in September 2014, and has managed to achieve a DSIB score of “outstanding” in its last two inspections.

Kings School Al Barsha’s fees start at Dh53,622 for foundation years.

The school is the most expensive of the top 17 on the KHDA’s portal, with a maximum grade 13 tuition fee of Dh106,404 per year.

But fees for grades 12 and 13 are frozen so the maximum for 2022/23 would be Dh97,796.

Gems Royal Dubai School: up to Dh48,331 per year

This branch of Gems schools is the only outstanding primary school in the Mirdif area that offers the UK national curriculum.

Founded in 2005, the school has been rated “outstanding” for the 5th consecutive year in the 2019-2020 DSIB Report.

The school caters to the learning needs of FS1 pupils up to year six.

The fees for the next academic year are as follows: FS1 fees are Dh 38,331 and fees for FS2 all the way up to year 6 are Dh48,33