Launch Ready: Oaktree Primary School

Launch Ready: Oaktree Primary School
By C Hoppe
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UK curriculum Oaktree Primary plans to open on Wednesday 24th August, and while student numbers are still firmly under-wraps, our WSA stats predict the school is likely to launch with at least one well subscribed class per year group, if not more.  With less than two weeks to go we decided it was time to visit the school to see how principal Chris McDermott and his team were getting on in their final launch preparations...


The Classrooms - all in order? Classroom furniture is already installed throughout the school, as are the white boards and associated classroom furniture. While the teachers might not have got into class yet to 'stamp their mark,' the classrooms are certainly fully kitted out.

Senior Management - in Place? Yes... Each member of the Oaktree management team has extensive UAE experience, and is also coincidentally ex-GEMS. The team are: founding principal Chris McDermott (ex-principal at the Outstanding rated Jumeirah Primary School), founding vice-principal- Carrie Hoza who previously spent 5 years at GEMS Wellington International School Dubai and assistant principal Craig Dyche Nichols (ex GEMS Cambridge School).

Have the teachers arrived? Today saw the start of induction week for the 19 new Oaktree teachers, many of which were recruited from the UK (see above). The school predicts class sizes of 12 to 14 students for the first year, with each having both a classroom teacher and teaching assistant.

Is Equipment in Place? All the main play equipment is now fully installed throughout the school, while outdoor flooring and sun-shades are currently being finalised.

Over in the completed Foundation Stage annex we encouraged the new teachers to get to grips with the fun reading nooks, part of the Oaktree Foundation soft play equipment.

Oaktree offers French and Arabic language tuition; today the newly appointed language teachers explored their classrooms.

Details for Parents: Oaktree school uniforms have arrived and are available at Zaks on Beach Road. School buses will be via Busco and are also finalised. A Foundation parents' room has been allocated and fully equipped. Nutritionally balanced and healthy school meals will be available daily from 'Mum Mum.'

Oaktree Primary will be holding an open day on the 20th August for any prospective parents who'd like a closer look at the school. For further admission details please contact the admissions team on:


More information... has followed Oaktree's journey over the past 6 months. For previous articles please see:

Principal Chris McDermott's views on why Oaktree is perfect for your child

The official WSA hard hat construction tour of Oaktree

Oaktree's WSA Q and A

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