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UAE Schools Guide
From Abu Dhabi to Dubai, the United Arab Emirates is home to some of the top schools in the Middle East. Whether you are new to the country or a long-term resident, our round up of the best schools in the region is here to help you make the right choice for your child. Read our reviews, watch our videos and use our search tools to find the perfect school in the UAE.

Where to begin when choosing a school in the UAE

Getting to grips with an entirely new schooling system can be a challenge, particularly if you've just relocated from abroad. We've demystified the educational journey in the UAE, bringing you all the key points you need to know. Find out everything you need to know about the UAE's schooling system, then browse our insider UAE school reviews to compare and contrast private schools across the country and the rest of the world.


Education in the United Arab Emirates
Expats residing in the UAE can find it difficult to secure a school that is not only affordable and international, but also with availability, thanks to a rolling admissions scheme. Although this means families can apply at any time of year, it also means space can be limited, so thorough research and early application is advised. Similarly to the UK, education in the UAE is divided into three areas: public (state) schools, private schools and higher education. Aside from the cost, the main difference between public and private schools is the curriculum followed. While public schools tend to stick to the Arabic curriculum, UAE private schools choose from 15 different international curriculums

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Offers boarding
All-through
Mixed


Cranleigh Abu Dhabi
Abu Dhabi
Dubai British School
Dubai
Dubai College
Dubai
Dubai English Speaking School and College (DESS and DESC)
Dubai
Jumeirah College
Dubai
Jumeirah English Speaking School
Dubai
Raha International School
Abu Dhabi
Repton Abu Dhabi
Abu Dhabi
Repton Al Barsha
Dubai
Repton Dubai
Dubai
Swiss International Scientific School In Dubai
Dubai
The Arbor School
Dubai
The British International School (BISAD)
Abu Dhabi
The British School Al Khubairat
Abu Dhabi


Repton Dubai
Dubai
Swiss International Scientific School In Dubai
Dubai


Cranleigh Abu Dhabi
Abu Dhabi
Dubai British School
Dubai
Dubai College
Dubai
Dubai English Speaking School and College (DESS and DESC)
Dubai
Jumeirah English Speaking School
Dubai
Raha International School
Abu Dhabi
Repton Abu Dhabi
Abu Dhabi
Repton Al Barsha
Dubai
Swiss International Scientific School In Dubai
Dubai
The Arbor School
Dubai
The British International School (BISAD)
Abu Dhabi
The British School Al Khubairat
Abu Dhabi


Cranleigh Abu Dhabi
Abu Dhabi
Dubai British School
Dubai
Dubai College
Dubai
Dubai English Speaking School and College (DESS and DESC)
Dubai
Jumeirah College
Dubai
Jumeirah English Speaking School
Dubai
Raha International School
Abu Dhabi
Repton Abu Dhabi
Abu Dhabi
Repton Al Barsha
Dubai
Repton Dubai
Dubai
Swiss International Scientific School In Dubai
Dubai
The Arbor School
Dubai
The British International School (BISAD)
Abu Dhabi
The British School Al Khubairat
Abu Dhabi


Educational support in Middle East Schools
Home to many expats from around the globe, the UAE successfully caters to a wide range of educational needs. Like most industries in the UAE, its education system has flourished over the years, with the adult literacy rate jumping from 54% in the mid-1970s, to a 95% literacy rate in the UAE today. Due to the increasing expat population, private international schools have made schooling synonymous with the UK and the US, allowing students a seamless transition in preparing for GCSEs and SATs. In terms of special education (SEN) support in the UAE, The Ministry of Education has pledged to adapt schools to facilitate special needs education. There are specialised schools dotted across the country, whilst those wishing to attend private schools in the Middle East will have access to additional teaching, separate classroom instruction and more.  

International Schools in Abu Dhabi
As the capital of the United Arab Emirates, many expatriate families seek international schools in Abu Dhabi. As a result, there are many British schools in Abu Dhabi that follow the English National Curriculum including Cambridge IGCSE and A-levels. Schooling in Abu Dhabi prides itself on its top-notch facilities, extra-curricular activities and high-quality academics approved by the Abu Dhabi Department of Knowledge and Education.  

Our expert reviews of some of the most popular and high-ranking private schools in Abu Dhabi are as follows:   

International Schools in Dubai
For expatriate families looking for outstanding international schooling abroad, Dubai is a top contender and boasts one of the largest selections of international schools in the world. With 90% of education provided privately, parents and children not only have the pick of the bunch, but the international schools in Dubai are highly competitive against one another, meaning facilities and curriculums are second to none. Students attending private primary schools in Dubai who are not of Arab heritage must undergo Arabic language classes until age 9 or 13, although many enjoy this aspect of their education alongside national curriculum options such as Canada, the US, UK, Japan, Iran, Russia and more.  

Our in-depth reviews of some of Dubai’s best private schools are as follows:

FAQs

How many private schools are there in the UAE?
Due to its dense expatriate population, the UAE has one of the largest private school economies in the world following a broad range of curricula. It is estimated that there are around 567 private schools in the United Arab Emirates, growing year on year to accommodate the influx of international students living in the Middle East.

How much does private school cost in UAE?
UAE school fees are calculated by grade, however, international schooling costs tend to range from AED 12,723 (£2,778) to AED 64,093 (£13,998) per annum. It's worth noting that, these figures don’t include admission, uniform, and stationery costs.

How does education in the UAE compare with the rest of the world?
The quality of education in the UAE is high, ranking in the top 50 countries globally. Even though the country is relatively young, it is seen to have one of the most mature education systems in the world, coming in 45th when combining all global school ranking lists.