United Arab Emirates / Dubai / Knowledge Village / iCademy Middle East

iCademy Middle East Q & A

Dubai's only accredited online schooling option, iCademy, has become a life saver for parents of children who want a more flexible approach to their children's education. Fully accredited by the KHDA and NEASC, it ensures that students can complete their education with a High School Diploma that will be recognised globally.
At a glance
School type
International
School phase
All through
Inspection rating
No rating
Curricula taught
Availability 2019/20
fiber_manual_record All grades
Availability 2020/21
fiber_manual_record All grades
Annual fee average
AED 20,500
Annual fees
AED 18,332 - 25,672
Price band help
Mid-range
Status
Open
Opening year
2007
School year
Sep to Jul
Principal
Diane Claver
Owner
Pansophic Learning
Main teacher nationality
A mix of nationalities
Main student nationality
A mix of nationalities
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LET'S GO

Welcome to the iCademy Middle East official Q and A page. Here we ask the questions, and the school answers directly. It is its chance to have its say on specific areas you have told us you want to know about. If you think there are additional questions we should be asking you may contact us here.

What qualities and characteristics would you say define your school?

Our Online School offers rich, challenging, and engaging online content. We offer live and recorded classes with the help of our certified online teachers. Our school offers rich, challenging, and engaging online content. We offer live and recorded teaching sessions with the help of our certified, highly qualified teachers.

Students utilize our online curriculum, the Accel Management Platform (AMP) for Education. iCademy Middle East is aligned with Ohio and Common Core State Standards.

An Individualized Learning Plan is tailored for each student to ensure a customized program that fits the student’s unique strengths, weaknesses, learning styles and aptitudes. A learning coach is provided for students who study in the Learning Center. This certified teacher facilitates progress through daily lessons in the K–8 environment and plays a supportive role to help the student stay on task through grades 9-12.

Cutting-edge technology enables individualized learning to happen anytime, anywhere. The online school provides daily lesson plans, as well as delivering announcements, online discussions, and communication and support tools to tie the experience together.

iCademy Middle East offers virtual clubs available to all students, as well as social activities on a bimonthly basis in the UAE.

iCademy Middle East is a a high-tech, American curriculum school for students from KG through Grade 12. Our school’s distinctive character is the provision of a rigorous education that is supported by a proven digital platform, which enhances the student experience.

The Learning Management System provides our teachers and students with powerful classroom content, well-organized to support personalized learning. Our comprehensive online curriculum provides students with the opportunity to pursue their learning, anytime and anywhere.

Research into the provision of our platform in the US has shown it benefits students who are:
• Gifted and talented and require timetable flexibility
• Advanced students who outstretch their peers academically
• Those requiring additional support
• Students who respond well to learning outside the traditional environment
• Those who move regularly and for whom bricks and mortar schools are not appropriate (military families for instance)
• Those who cannot get a place in a bricks and mortar school and/or are on waiting lists
• Those who are not being challenged enough at school
• Expat students living in the GCC without access to high-quality bricks and mortar school

What is the teacher: student ratio in your school?

Learning Center:
Grade KG-2 / Ratio 1:4
Grade 3-5 / Ratio 1:6
Grade 6-8 / Ratio 1:8
Grade 9-12 / Ratio 1:10
iCad+ Special Needs Program: Ratio 1:4
Online:
Grade K-5 / Ratio 1:50
Grade 6-12 / Ratio 1:100 (subject specialists)
Academic Coaches / Ratio 1:100 (additional support for students in grades 6-12)

Does your school have a waiting list?

No, and we have 10 start dates throughout the year to accommodate those who need enrollment at various times throughout the year.

Describe your school's approach to education and teaching?

Lower School Teacher Support
In Lower School, students are assigned a single “homeroom” teacher – a highly qualified teacher with specific expertise in the lower grades. This online teacher oversees all facets of the instructional experience for every subject, while the Learning Coach works side-by-side with each student to facilitate his or her progress through the daily lessons. Throughout the week, the teacher stays in close contact with the learning coach and student, communicating regularly by school e-mail, over the phone, and in one-to-one, real-time meetings that take place online.

Middle School Teacher Support
The Middle School parent or designated Learning Coach continues to work closely with their student to facilitate progress through the daily lessons. Students are exposed to more content-specific teachers in grades 6-8. Middle school instructors possess deep expertise in their dedicated subjects. They provide feedback and grades on student unit assessments and teacher graded assignments in their content-specific subjects to help prepare students on their journey toward high school. Throughout the month, each teacher stays in close contact with the student and the learning coach, communicating regularly by school email, Skype, over the phone, and in one-on-one, real-time meetings that take place online via Virtual Classrooms and Study Hall sessions.

High School Teacher Support
High School courses are taught by subject-specialist teachers. They grade students’ assignments / assessments, respond to student questions via school e-mail, Skype, or phone, conduct live online teacher led classes supplement the course content, and conduct online Study Halls which allow students to “drop in” with questions. Please note – teachers will respond to any Skype messages, voicemails, and school e-mail within one school day. Furthermore, all teacher-graded assignments will be graded, with feedback, within three school days.

Role of the Learning Coach / Parent
iCademy Middle East requires each student to have a designated Learning Coach. The Learning Coach is typically a parent, but could be another adult relative, tutor, or other individual who is the point of contact for the school and who will work directly with the student to help insure their success.

Physical education and sport is an important aspect of a healthy lifestyle. How does your school ensure children engage in physical activity?

Our curriculum has a full PE requirement at all grade levels. Students are given assigned physical activities to complete and journal throughout the course of the school year. We also have facilitated a partnership with a local gym (Iconic Fitness) to provide live sessions in person to any student that chooses to participate. Many of our students also participate in private provider sports teams and training in areas such as martial arts, golf, soccer, baseball, cricket, swimming, and basketball.

We also host a Sports Day each year that attracts both our online and Learning Center students.

How does your school promote healthy lifestyles?

We promote healthy lifestyles through our PE and health programs that are offered at all levels.

How do you promote healthy eating?

We promote healthy nutrition through our health curriculum that is part of each student’s curriculum every year.

Does the school have cafeteria facilities for the students?

No

If yes, does it serve hot food?

N/A

What would be the amount spent by a student for their lunchtime meal?

N/A

What is the starting and finishing time of your school day?

School is available 24/7 for our students. In our Learning Center students attend from 8:00 am – 3:00 pm each day

Is there a school uniform?

No

Please advise on your discipline policy?

Our discipline policy is unique in that where for the most part we don’t “see” students face to face, the policies focus more on academic integrity and proper online usage of the content and platform of our school. We also have policies related to online bullying and teach our students the proper manner in which to communicate with teachers and with each other. Our policies are anticipatory in nature and we teach students to be ethical, honest and of high moral character.

How do you feedback progress and attainment to students and parents?

Every parent has a unique login and access in real time to their student’s progress and attainment. We believe in complete transparency to parents regarding their students’ progress and attainment.

How often is the more formal feedback such as reports and parent/teacher meetings?

Parents are provided with quarterly formalized reports and parent/teacher meetings are conducted monthly or on a more frequent basis as needed.

What is your medium of instruction?

Online and in English

Is Arabic taught as both a first language and second language in your school?

Yes

Which other languages are taught?

Spanish, French, German

Do you offer EAL or TEFL support for those students where English is not their first language?

We facilitate EAL support to any student needing it

Is Islamic Education/Studies for the Arab Muslim students delivered in Arabic for them?

Yes

Do you have a dedicated prayer room/s for the Muslim students?

N/A

Does your school measure Value Added data? Please provide details of your current Value Added average scores

We conduct MAP testing twice per year to measure individual student growth over the course of the school year.

If external examinations and assessments are part of your curriculum, which ones do you offer?

MAP and AP Examinations

Do you develop independent learning through homework and, if so, what are your recommendations regarding this, particularly time spent on homework?

Our students do not have separate homework.

How do you support gifted, able and talented students?

There are enrichment activities built into the curriculum that our teachers guide students towards as the need for challenge and extension arises.

What percentage of your sixth form that take exams at 18 go to university, and where, in general, do they go?

All of our students participate in the ACT or SAT exams in order to qualify for university acceptance. We also provide each student with College and Career Counseling services through our dedicated counsellor.

Do you have a learning support team in your school?

Yes, we have an SEN coordinator that assists teachers in tailoring the curriculum offering to the individual needs of each student that needs additional learning support.

Not all schools are staffed or resourced to offer learning support to those children with either moderate or significant learning needs. To what level can you offer support for those with learning differences?

Together with our students we chose this acronym for the iCad+ Group, which reflects the special aspects of our group, and its unique identity within the larger iCademy Middle East school community.
• Our narrowed focus on core academic subjects, and sensitive pace allows us to foster as much meaningful engagement as possible for each individual student
• Our small group approach for additional support and communication opportunities
• Our low student: learning coach ratio of 6:1 allows students the personalized attention they need. We concentrate on core subjects of English, Math, Science and History
• We adapt the pace as appropriate (for example, for students working below a grade 5 level we can allow a grade to be taken over 2 years).
• We have a flexible and responsive approach to each individual’s learning profile for example, we can choose the most appropriate grade level by subject rather than by year group.
• We incorporate a broader focus on personal development: social communication, personal organization, dealing with confrontation etc. as these objectives are vitally important to the student’s long- term adaptability and personal success.
• We support Activities for Daily Living (ADL) and self-advocacy.
• We are a registered International ASDAN International Centre offering a range of ASDAN courses including Workright and Employability

Please provide comprehensive details of how well your school did in external exams for students at 16 and at 18 years of age? Please provide sufficient detail to allow parents to have a view on how academic your school is?

We have a very high graduation rate and all graduates from our program qualify for admission into a four-year university that accepts their application.

Does your school have particular expertise in dealing with a specific learning need such as dyslexia, dyspraxia, aspergers syndrome and so forth?

Through our iCad+ program offered at our Learning Center, students aged 12 to 21 years old, who have a wide range of learning issues including:
• General Learning Difficulties
• Dyslexia, Dyspraxia, Dyscalcula
• Attention Deficit Disorder (ADD/ADHD)
• Asperger Syndrome, Autism Spectrum Disorder
• Speech Language and Communication Difficulties
• Mild Cerebral Palsy
• Visual Impairment
• Auditory Processing Issues
• Behavioral, Emotional and Social Difficulties (BESD) e.g. anxiety issues

Does your school have an educational psychologist or access to one to assess and support those youngsters with more challenging learning and emotional needs?

For our Learning Center students we do have access to school psychological resources. For our online students we can provide recommendations of providers we have worked with in the community.

Do you have a parents’ group supporting the school?

We provide a closed online parent support group through Facebook that is intended to be a safe forum for parents to learn from each other and share ideas on best practices for learning in a home environment.

Are there opportunities for parents to support the learning, activities and events within the school or on trips other than through the parent group?

Parents support learning of their students through attendance at our school outings such as museum field trips, camping trips, sports day and when we take our students sailing.

Is there an opportunity for parental representation on your school Board of Governors?

We have employed a Parent Advisory Board that supports the school and provides any necessary recommendations to the Board of Governors.

Do you offer specific activities, events or information sessions for those parents new to the school and/or area?

We provide Open Days prior to each of our 10 unique start dates throughout the year to help parents and students as they get started in our school. We also host Coffee Mornings in person and online to provide parents with information about our school.

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