Studying in Dubai: A School System Guide

Dubai is a cosmopolitan city with a diverse population and a wide range of educational institutions to cater to the needs of its students. It is one of the top study destinations for students, offering quality education in a safe and welcoming environment. According to the Knowledge and Human Development Authority (KHDA), the latest rating cycle gave 82% of universities in the city four- or five-star ratings. That means Dubai is home to some of the best universities in the world.
You can broadly classify the education system in Dubai into three categories: private schools, international schools, and public education institutions. Here are some more details on each type:

Private Schools

Many private schools in Dubai are available, catering to different needs and budgets. Private schools are institutions owned by individuals or entities and do not get affiliated with the Ministry of Education. As a result, they have more flexibility regarding their curriculum, teaching methods, and extracurricular activities. These schools offer excellent education, with small class sizes and experienced teachers.
Private schools typically cater to a specific community, such as the Indian or Pakistani community, or they may follow a particular educational philosophy, such as the Montessori method. Depending on the school, some may teach in English, while others may use the local language as the medium of instruction.
Parents often choose private schools for their children as they believe these institutions offer high-quality education. They also have the advantage of being in control of selecting a school that matches their child’s learning style and needs. However, these perks come with higher tuition fees and other costs, such as uniforms and transportation. Fees for private schools can range from AED 5,000 to AED 70,000 per year.
If money is not a concern and you want to send your child to a school with an excellent reputation, there are many private schools to choose from in Dubai. So, don’t hesitate to explore the different options available. This way, you can make an informed decision about the best school for your child.

International Schools

In recent years, international schools have become increasingly popular in Dubai. These are similar to private schools with small class sizes and experienced teachers. However, international schools use an international curriculum, such as the International Baccalaureate (IB) or the Cambridge curriculum.
Students at international schools come from various cultural backgrounds, so these schools typically use English as their medium of instruction. They often have a more international student body, providing students with a global perspective. Currently, the Emirates houses various international schools, such as the following:


A British international school in UAE would teach the English National Curriculum, which schools follow in the United Kingdom. The curriculum is well-designed to develop student’s abilities in critical thinking, problem-solving, and independent learning.


The curriculum would focus on developing students’ analytical and research skills in a US international school in Dubai. Classes would also touch on US history, geography, and politics. These schools would also promote extracurricular activities, such as sports and cultural clubs.


A Canadian international school would offer a curriculum similar to the one used in Canadian public schools. The focus would be on developing well-rounded students who can think critically and solve problems. These schools would promote healthy living and environmental awareness.

The advantage of sending your child to an international school is that they will be prepared for tertiary education anywhere in the world. And unlike other schools, they offer a wide range of extracurricular activities. Since international schools use world-class curricula, you can expect your child to be as competitive as their peers. So, you won’t have to worry about them not being able to meet the requirements of colleges and universities abroad.

Public Education Institutions

In Dubai, public education is free for Emirati children and partially subsidized for expatriate children. The Dubai government is working to provide an excellent education for all children in the Emirate.
The quality of public schools has improved dramatically in recent years, thanks to efforts by the government to invest in resources and infrastructure. However, some parents still prefer to send their children to private or international schools because they believe these institutions offer a better quality of education.
The advantage of public schools is that they are easily accessible and much cheaper than private or international schools. If you’re on a budget, sending your child to a public school would be the most economical option. Also, since these schools are government-run, you can ensure that your child will receive a quality education.
However, a public school in Dubai involves a more strict admission process, as a limited number of places are available. So, you’ll need to apply early and meet the requirements set by the school. But if you can secure a spot for your child, they will receive a world-class education at a fraction of the cost.

When choosing a school for your child, you must weigh all your options and consider what’s best for your family. Each type of school has its advantages and disadvantages, so it’s up to you to decide which fits your child best. Whichever route you choose, your child will receive a quality education that will set them up for success in the future.

Author: mathtuition88

Math and Education Blog

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