Most Recommended Schools in the UAE

Most Recommended Schools in the UAE
By David Westley
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1st= British International School Abu Dhabi

British International School in Abu Dhabi can normally be found quietly getting on with things in the shade of its perhaps better known Dubai sister school, Nord Anglia Dubai. However, for once BISAD has edged its Dubai counterpart (although both make it to this list of Most Recommended) achieving universal thumbs up from its key stakeholders, its parents.

The school was last rated B4 (an improving school) by ADEC, Abu Dhabi's education regulator, but the school has made considerably improvements since that last inspection. Helping to beef up its IB offering has been its 'new' Principal, Patrick Horne. Most recently Mr Horne was Principal of the British International School of Shanghai, a fellow Nord Anglia Education school, recognised as within the top 5% of schools in the world by the International Baccalaureate Organisation.

Horne's first examination will come with the first set of Diploma results for students at BISAD, due later this summer.

The school has already shown it cuts the mustard at GCSE. In 2014 the school achieved 82% A* to C in the examination results, with 31% of the marks being either A* or A grades. This compares to the 2014 UK average of 68.8%. Some 24 students at BISAD sat entry Mathematics GCSE early, with 88% achieving A*- A grades. Thirty students sat early entry GCSE English Language with 87% achieving A*- A grades.

Above the grades however BISAD has proved itself a warm and friendly school, for its students and parents alike. Parents will also no doubt have been affected by the renewed sense of dynamism within the school. As our JWI consultant noted on her inspection, " although the buildings themselves are traditional in aspect and lack the flair and grandeur of some of the new schools that have opened in Abu Dhabi in recent times, there is a strong feeling enthusiasm, drive and commitment from both staff and pupils all within a really vibrant environment."

Full review here.

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