City School is located in the Al Tallah 2 area of Ajman and offers a CBSE curriculum. It is a sister concern to the City University College in Ajman and the soon to open City American School.
City School, located in the Al Tallah 2 area of Ajman, opened in 2017, and is one of three educational establishments owned by READ - R Education and Academic Development - the education arm of R Holding. READ ventured into the education sector in Ajman in 2012 with the launch of City University College of Ajman (CUCA). The company is owned by H.H. Sheikh Rashid bin Humaid Al Nuaimi, who is also the Chairman of the Board of Trustees of the school. A third educational institution - City American School - will open in September 2020.
The Vision of City School is "To create and sustain a student-centered learning environment integrated with the UAE Vision 2021 where educators are encouraged to meet the needs of all learners by designing academically challenging tasks to develop independent thinkers who spearhead a dynamic future globally and that continuously inspires innovation, excellence, commitment and creativity."
Its Mission states that "We at City School stress on the holistic development of each child: spiritual, moral, intellectual, social, emotional and physical. Our mission is to develop the overall personality of students with active, creative and innovative minds, academic excellence, extra-curricular activities and a sense of understanding and compassion for the UAE community they live in."
The school's Core Values include Perseverance Respect, Excellence, Strength, Innovation, Dedication and Ethics. The school aims to ensure that these values are instilled in all children, so they can aspire to be high achievers in all aspects. The school ensures that they have high regards for themselves and for others.
City School Ajman (CSA) is currently open from KG1 to Grade 10 and will grow to Grade 12 in April 2022. The school has attracted a substantial 2,342 students since its opening, the majority in the KG and Primary sections - as is the norm with almost all new schools. On average, there are approximately 180 students in KG1 (with 8 classes), between 300 and 350 per grade from KG2 (18 classes) to Grade 3 (10-12 classes per grade), with numbers being somewhat lower in Grades 4 (225 in 8 classes) and 5 (200 in 8 classes).
In the Middle and Secondary sections of the school, a total of just over 400 students are studying from Grades 6 to 10 with the numbers of classes ranging from 8 in Grades 6, to 4 in Grade 7 and 2 each in Grades 8, 9 and 10.
CSA has attracted students from a wide range of nationalities - a total of 49 in fact! The largest nationality group within the school is Pakistani (who represent just over 1/5th of students), followed by Egyptian (18.8%) and Indian (18.4%). Male students slightly outnumber girls.
Not surprisingly, CSA has also employed a significant number of teachers - some 218 - who are supported by an additional 43 teaching assistants. In common with many Indian curriculum schools, class sizes are on the large size. In KG, the teacher:student ratio is 2:25, and in Grade 1, 2:30. However, across the rest of the school, the ratio is 1:30. Maximum class sizes in terms of student numbers are 27 students in KG and 32 students across all other grades.
In September 2019, there was a significant increase in the number of Arab national students who joined the school, and as a result, staff numbers grew by a significant 125%. Teacher turnover at the school is said to be between 15 and 20% per year - below the UAE international school average of 20-22%, but probably higher than the school would like to see.
Led by Principal, Richard Monteiro, the school is said to have teachers from a diverse range of nationalities and expertise in their relevant fields. All teachers are expected to be fully qualified with a Bachelors degree in their specialty field and a Bachelor of Education.
City School follows the CBSE curriculum as defined by the Central Board of Secondary Education in New Delhi. Core subjects across the school include English, Maths, Science, Social Studies, Languages, Physical Education, Art, Music and Dance. In addition to the core subjects including those required by the UAE Ministry of Education, students can opt for a number of additional languages including Hindi,French, Urdu, Malayalam and Bengla.
City School says that in following the CBSE curriculum, students experience "a dynamic syllabus which ensures a solid learning environment that is stimulating, engaging and fuels a thirst for learning in each of our students. The curriculum at City School is skillfully built to provide students ample scope for physical, intellectual, emotional and social development. We envision the all-round development of students in consonance with the holistic approach to education and therefore, emphasizes integration of co-curricular domains with curricular activities in an equitable manner. Along with the scholastic subjects, we equally emphasize co-scholastic areas of art education, physical education and various other visual performing arts."
City School also offers a range of extra-curricular activities which include Student Council, Sports & Arts Activities, School Clubs, Newsletters and Magazine-making.
City School uses a range of Base-line assessments to guide individual teaching and progression for students. These include external benchmark tests such as ASSET, and CAT 4.
The first cohort of Grade 10 students will take their CBSE Grade X examinations in early 2021. Although there are not yet any Senior Secondary students in Grades 11 and 12, the school already offers personality development and career counselling sessions to prepare students for higher studies.
The school has a trained and well qualified team of special educators to support students with differing abilities. Upon identification, individual educations plans are designed for each student to ensure the progress. This plans are closely monitored by a Learning Support Team ( LST). Students with Gifts and Talents also receive additional support.
The school states "At City School we strongly believe that every child can learn, though it may not be on the same day or in the same way."
The facilities of the school are impressive. Spread over an area of 500,000 square feet, City School is the largest school in Ajman. The main school building, which includes classrooms, libraries, laboratories, cafeterias, and administrative offices is the center of the campus. There are 120 classrooms, each with multimedia/Overhead Projectors, which are installed in all classrooms and laboratories (interactive white boards etc). WIFI is available through the entire building.
Libraries and well-equipped laboratories are available to support the curriculum at Primary, Middle and Secondary level. Students have access to Science and IT labs, along with ICT resources. Performance spaces, for music, theatre, dance, painting and art lessons are available to encourage students to develop their skills in Performing and Visual Arts.
City School places tremendous importance on athletics and sports considering it an integral part of the child’s development. Each student is provided with ample opportunity to engage in physical education and extra-curricular activities, regardless of his/her skills. Students have access to indoor and outdoor playgrounds, football fields, basketball and tennis courts and multi-purpose sport activity spaces where they can pursue gymnastics, Karate and Taekwondo. Track and field facilities are available for high jump, long jump and sprinting.
We asked City School to tell us at WhichSchoolAdvisor.com what makes their school special.
They said "Our innovative, learner centered, balanced and age appropriate curriculum and evaluation process help students identify their interests and expand their learning horizons. The curriculum also focuses on nurturing life skills, inculcating values and fostering cultural learning and international understanding in an interdependent society, which ultimately help students evolve as judicious young adults with a sense of real self-estimate having true values and principles."
It is very evident that the involvement of the Ajman royal family in the City School is in support of the UAE national commitment to education. The success of the school in attracting such large student numbers, and notably from Arab nationals in addition to the more usual Indian and Pakistani population, is clearly a sign of the faith that expatriate families have placed in the school to deliver on its commitment.
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Fees at City School are very much in the affordable range. They start at AED 5,750 for KG to Grade 2, AED 6,330 for Grades 3 to 5, AED 7,480 for Grades 6 to 8 and AED 8,600 for Grades 9 and 10.
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