The Indian High School Garhoud is the junior school to the perennially popular Indian High School in Oud Metha. The school was rated Good by the KHDA for the twelfth time during its 2022-23 inspection.
The Indian High School (Garhoud) has again been rated Good in the KHDA's 2022-23 inspection round. The Senior school retained its Very Good rating. The full report can be found under the 'Inspection' tab. This review will be updated in due course.
The Indian High School Junior School (Al Garhoud), was founded in 1988 as the Primary/Junior school branch of the Indian High School (which was founded over 25 years earlier in 1961) and is run by the same Board of Trustees as a not-for-profit organisation. The Junior school accommodates KG classes and girls and boys from Grade 1 through to Grade 4. Students receive automatic access to the Indian High School Oud Metha for completion of their studies. There is a further associated school - the Indian International School at Dubai Silicon Oasis open from KG to Grade 10, which is also part of the same organisation.
One of, if not the most sought-after, highly affordable and academically successful Indian curriculum schools in the city for parents seeking entry for their children to the CBSE curriculum, demand appears to be undented, irrespective of economic or other circumstances that may have impacted other schools in recent years. Celebrating the group's 60th Birthday in 2021, there are some astonishing facts about the school. Over 100,000 students have graduated IHS since 1961 and 85,000 of these have attended top universities.
The Indian High School's legacy is impressive.
According to the school, "IHS is the first and longest-standing Indian education institution in the Gulf. Established before the founding of the United Arab Emirates, our schools embody the cultures, values, and ethos of both India and the UAE in both learning and teaching. We soar high but stay rooted in our values and culture."
At the time of the last KHDA inspection in 2019, the Junior school accommodated close to 4,250 students, who were supported by 311 teachers and a further 38 teaching assistants and 13 Guidance Counsellors. As would be expected, the largest nationality group of both staff and students was Indian. According to the most recent KHDA records, the student number has fallen somewhat to 4,171, though staffing and the teacher:student ratio of 1:15 remains unchanged.
The school explains its Vision and Mission as follows:
Our vision inspires us all. It works as our guiding light, providing aspiration not only to evolve and succeed but to make a difference in the world.
Our mission is the recipe to how we UNITED can reach our goal of creating proactive global citizens. Our mission is our reason for being and a beacon to follow in our everyday endeavours.
U - Unfold the inherent talents of all students and enable them to do their best.
N - Nurture a cosmopolitan atmosphere by encouraging the appreciation of world culture.
I - Instil appropriate and desirable ethical values to make the students productive and responsible members of the society.
T - Train the students to realise their educational potential and become independent, lifelong learners.
E - Embody commitment to meet the expectations of the society by continually improving the quality management systems.
D - Develop an environment that will enable the school to meet the objectives of the National Agenda and the vision of the rulers of UAE.
The school is led by Principal, Mrs. Amita Kapoor, who joined the school in 2014.
The Indian High School became affiliated to the CBSE Board in 1975, and its first cohort of students presented for the All Indian Secondary School Examinations in April 1977. The school continues to follow the CBSE curriculum today, although the KG curriculum (in common with many Indian curriculum schools) is drawn from the UK-based Early Years Foundation Stage curriculum.
The KG curriculum focuses on six key areas of learning:
The aim is to ensure that learning is engaging and fun. Teachers believe in providing a holistic learning experience which promotes students’ social, emotional, cognitive and physical development and prepares them to take their next steps. Teaching and learning approaches involve integrated learning through inquiry and play that builds on children’s curiosity and are based on real life concepts.
The Primary curriculum followed by students in Grades 1 to 4 is based on the CBSE and UAE Ministry Of Education guidelines, which is designed to cater to the overall development of students with well-being as a prime focus, ensuring that there is a balance between the curricular and co-curricular activities of the school.
Partnerships with various national and international organisations provides students with a number of extended learning opportunities. A detailed and robust analysis of the external and internal assessments is used to modify the curriculum for the specific needs of learners and provides them with the best learning experiences.
Innovation and creativity are embedded in the curriculum to promote and strengthen the 21st-century learning skills of students. These include the latest developments in the field of education such as The National Education Policy and Positive Education.
IHS believes that learning is more meaningful and enjoyable when content and process is learned in the context of real and present problems. The acquisition of knowledge and skills are enhanced when students construct their own meaning through knowledge and skill application. The regular curriculum is extended by providing students with a wide range of experiences and regular activities to introduce a variety of areas of interests.
The Curriculum Enrichment Programmes support cognitive, social, and physical development of the student and aid in fulfilling the school's vision of Creating Proactive Global (Digital) Citizens. Digital fluency is an area of specific focus at IHS, providing students with the aptitude to interpret information, discover the meaning, design the content, construct knowledge and communicate ideas in a digitally connected world effectively and ethically. It promotes innovation through meaningful learning opportunities with elements of enterprise, enquiry research, critical thinking and the use of learning tools and technologies.
The Physical Computing Project/Making Coding Project bring computer science to life for all students with fun projects, immediate results, and both block and text editors for learners at different levels.
The interdisciplinary learning under the STEAM framework enables students to apply key Maths, Science, Social Studies, English, Art and Technology concepts of their curriculum to design elements. Students are trained to become good ‘digital citizens’ using information technology in order to engage responsibly in society. The IHS platform has been designed as a resource for all the learners to not only develop digital fluency for new-age technologies, but also to build advanced skills in emerging technologies.
Further Curriculum Enrichment Programmes include Art Integration, Outdoor Learning, a range of clubs and field trips. Further details of clubs can be found here. There is also a focus on Creative Arts, where students are encouraged to enjoy and learn through a variety of medium such as art, dance, music, puppetry and plays which actively involve children’s imagination and inspire them to be expressive.
Sports is also an area of focus, though much of these activities take place before or after school and at weekend. Options include Badminton, Basketball, Cricket (Boys only), Football, Chess, Fitness for life with the help of medical centre, Table Tennis, Tennis, Mini Cricket - KG1 to Grade 1, Yoga, Kiddo’s basketball, Gymnastics, Skating and Swimming.
There is also a strong focus on volunteering both within and outside school, and a focus on sustainability both within school and at home and a focus on Well-being for all students for which a number of initiatives exist. Further details can be found here.
The school does not make any specific mention of support for students with additional learning needs or Gifts and Talents, but we would expect it to follow the KHDA framework with regard to Inclusive Education. Some 200+ students had been identified with Special Educational Needs at the time of the last inspection in 2019.
The most recent KHDA inspection rated the provision and outcomes for Students of Determination as Good, but recommended that the school should 'Improve the quality and organisation of in-class support for students of different abilities.'
Facilities at the school include: a cricket field, 3 Basketball Courts, a "Jiggle Wiggle" Play Area for KG-1 & KG-2 students, two Big Human Chess Boards, one Big Human Snakes & Ladders, a Free Play Area with hopscotch and modified hopscotch.
This school has been rated Good for the last 11 years in a row and is generally rated Good and Very Good in student attainment and progress. Whilst its older sister school was rated Outstanding for several years, and is now rated Very Good - the second highest rating available from the KHDA's DSIB inspection teams, the Junior school has not been able to reach these heights.
The main challenges appears to be the quality of teaching, with academic achievement having been rated Very Good for the most part in the core English and Maths subjects in the KG being downgraded to Very Good from Outstanding.
In terms of strengths, the inspection team found these to be:
Areas of improvement were identified as a requirement to:
If you would like to read the full inspection report - and we would strongly recommend that you do so in order to understand the reasons behind the ratings, you will find it here.
The number of responses to the WhichSchoolAdvisor.com Parent Survey is insufficient to enable us to make a assessment of parent views, though those who had given their feedback were largely positive about the school.
If you are a parent, teacher or student at The Indian High School Junior Campus and would like to share your experience and opinions with other potential members of your community, please complete our Survey here.
Only 185 parents responded to the KHDA pre-inspection survey and other than a statement that "Parents responding to the survey are very happy with the provision of education available to their children", no further feedback was provided.
However, the inspection report notes that parents are represented on the Governing Board of the school and that the school "is extremely successful in fostering high-quality relationships with the parents as partners in their children’s learning. Parents actively contribute to the school’s improvement initiatives. They are kept well informed about their children’s learning and development. Parents know that they can approach the school through the Parent Communication Centre. The school reports regularly to parents regarding the children’s academic progress and well-being. Partnerships with local, regional and international communities are contributing positively to students’ learning and development".
Without doubt, the Indian High School Senior School is the most in-demand CBSE curriculum school in the Emirate of Dubai, and this popularity inevitably ensures that the Junior School is also in very high demand. It may be that simply as a result of its popularity (and its size and available fees), that the school has not necessarily worked as hard and been as successful as some others in reaching higher standards in respect of its inspection evaluations.
No doubt the KHDA will continue to press for improvements, and equally, no doubt parents will continue to seek to gain access for their children to the school. This can only be a positive for The Indian High School and a further means of building on its heritage.
Irritatingly, the Indian High School does not publish its fees on its website, bu they are provided by the KHDA. Fees start at AED 5,276 for KG1 and 2, rising to AED 5,525 from Grades 1 to 4.
Indian High School Al Garhoud is a Best of school, a ranking determined by parent surveys on the site. It can be found in the following Best of rankings:
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