Noya British School, located on Yas Island, Abu Dhabi, is new school which is expected to open at the start of the 2023-24 academic year.
In February 2022, premium education provider, Aldar Academies, announced that it plans to open three schools in Abu Dhabi in areas that have recorded population growth over the past few years. The areas include Khalifa City, Saadiyat Island and Yas Island. Whilst in Khalifa City, Aldar Academies has agreed to its first school acquisition with the purchase of Al Shohub Private School, and on Saadiyat Island, the group plans to expand group member Cranleigh Abu Dhabi, Noya, located in the Noya North development, will be the first new build investment.
Noya at Yas Island is a project by Aldar Academies’ owner, Aldar Properties, offering a mix of two and three bedroom townhouses, and four bedroom villas. The development is located opposite Gateway Park.
Following the direction of most Aldar Academies, including Abu Dhabi city located Al Muna, The Pearl Academy, Al Mamoura and Al Yasmina Academies, the school will offer the English National curriculum. Currently, there are three other schools within the immediate area, including Aldar’s West Yas Academy (which is US curriculum), SABIS International School (which follows the SABIS mixed US/UK curriculum) and Yas School which follows the Ministry of Education curriculum.
The new school is interesting in terms of its concept for two reasons. Firstly, there is a much higher demand for US curriculum schools among Emirati families and this demand on Yas Island has potentially already been met through the opening of West Yas Academy, suggesting that the school is expected to attract predominantly expatriate families. Secondly, the new school is not branded as an Aldar Academy. This suggests that the group is trying to diversify away from its higher fee schools (fees range from approximately AED 42,000 in FS1 to AED 62,000 in Year 13).
In the information issued at the ground-breaking ceremony for the school in November 2022, CEO of Aldar Academies, Sahar Cooper, commented “Noya British School is the first step of further expansion in Abu Dhabi which will enable us to offer a sustainable model of education for our families within the Yas Island community.”
Aldar Academies also announced that it will develop another school under the Aldar Academies brand on Saadiyat Island that will cater to families in the surrounding communities that seek English National Curriculum education. Given that it already operates the Cranleigh School Abu Dhabi in the same area, it will be interesting to see how the two school are differentiated.
The education group said it will invest Dh1 billion to diversify its schools' portfolio. Through this investment, Aldar aims to increase the number of students in its schools to more than 40,000 by the 2024-2025 academic year.
This review will be updated as further information becomes available.
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