Top Affordable UK Schools in Dubai, 2018-2019

Who says there's no such thing as great affordable British schools in Dubai? Whoever they are, they are wrong. Here we count 17 of them - almost all of which are actually getting better!
Top Affordable UK Schools in Dubai, 2018-2019
By David Westley
Do your children attend a UAE school? Take our survey and help other parents.
WhichSchoolAdvisor's annual school survey.
LET'S GO
UK, British

This is our third edition of the story of affordable UK curriculum based education in the UAE, and it is a tale that continues to weave new narratives. Although we’ve dropped four schools since 2017, we have added one and have news of another all set for significant expansion. In the 2018 article we have also added a set of schools we believe are ones to watch... Story by Cursty Hoppe.

Most of our top affordable schools have continued to improve their offerings and the 2017/18 KHDA inspection reports highlight these developments.

What makes a Great and Affordable School?

Affordable UK schools in Dubai are priced at a maximum of 40,000 AED for Year 13. Many schools here cost significantly less than this. In addition, for a school to be included, it has to be rated at least Good by the Dubai Schools Inspection Bureau (DSIB) in one or more phases – Foundation, Primary, Secondary and/or Post-16 study. The school needs to be doing well in terms of opinion - parents need to be behind the school. Finally, the school needs a thumbs up from our team of editors.

What Don’t You Get at this Fee level?

Before we begin it is important parents consider what the payoff for lower fees will be. There is no escaping the fact that less expensivschools will, usually, have fewer facilities. You can't expect planetariums and Olympic sized swimming pools if you don't want to pay for them.

There are however some necessities you should expect. These include in our view, outdoor play areas, sports facilities, technology labs, qualified teachers… . However ultimately parents need to be realistic and decide what they, and their child, can and cannot live without before assessing any affordable British school in Dubai.

Although the 2018 fee-freeze has affected every school in Dubai, it is likely to have impacted those at the lower end of the fee-scale more than those at the premium end. With already low fees, the small annual additional income is a lifeline for development and improvement for many of these schools.

You should also be aware that many of the less expensive schools are also 'older', so updating their buildings, facilities and equipment, is usually more of a live issue than in the city’s more recently established schools.

Finally many 'budget' schools trade off lower fees with fewer subjects offered for GCSEs and A' Levels. If your child is planning Mandarin and Theatre Studies post 16, expect to be disappointed by what's on offer. Or at the very least to have to work very hard to find the school that matches your requirements. You will likely also have to be compromise elsewhere...

And, What You do…

To help you understand what you do get we have added a new facilities section, so you can see just what you are getting for your money.

To this end we have also added subject choices at both (I)GCSE and A Level, and extra-curricular activities on offer. Note, it is often hard to determine if the latter are free or paid for. Usually, if it involves a third party there will be an extra cost.

Finally look at the mix of staffing as this is a school’s biggest cost. Usually a balance of older teachers with experience, with the fresh ideas and passion of younger staff works well. Too low a turnover and you have the possibility of disinterest. Too high a turnover, and there is the possibility of a lack of knowledge, and poor processes.

Finally, look where teachers are recruited from and what their qualifications are. A fallacy however is that good quality British education requires British teachers to deliver it. Don't just take our word for it, check the ratings awarded by the KHDA who recognise good teaching wherever it takes place, regardless of nationality.

Read on to find some of Dubai's best, and most affordable schools...

Comments
Latest UAE articles
Society

Covid-19: Back to School Rules For 2021/22

UAE authorities have described the rules for staff and pupils returning to school and nur…

New Schools

RGS Guildford Dubai: Pre-Opening Campus Tour

RGS Guildford Dubai will open in September 2021.  Having toured the campus whilst co…

School Performance

Do 2021's IB Results Need a Health Warning?

Social media was alight last year with parents, students and teachers who believed that …

Society

Euro 2020: Schools Open Late on Monday

Headteachers at schools up and down the country are giving teachers and students a lie-in…

School Performance

Live: 2021 IB DP and Career-Related Results

Results for UAE students were released on 6th July 2021. Click on the school link to s…

Courses & Curricula

IB Results 2021: Sharp Rise in Global Average

More than 170,000 students across the world will receive their IB results tomorrow (July …

Interviews

The TSS Podcast: Exam Results Special!

The School Show podcast returns for the last time this academic year, and this time…

Courses & Curricula

IB Results Day 2021: What You Need to Know

It’s less than two weeks until IB Results Day. Once again, Covid-19 has created ne…

0 Schools Selected
keyboard_arrow_down keyboard_arrow_up
Your selection Clear All