Pamir Private School is a new Pakistani curriculum school which will open in April 2020 in the Al Rahmaniya 3 area of Sharjah.
The story so far...
In what will no doubt be a welcome addition to the schooling options for Pakistani and other nationalities, Pamir Private School will open its doors to students at the start of the 2020-21 academic year in April 2020.
Founded by the Knowledge Inn Preparatory School (KIPS), a private educational system of pre-school, school, college, evening coaching, entry tests preparation, foreign tests preparation and CSS – PMS preparation, KIPS was founded in 1992 by Mr. Abid Wazir Khan in Lahore. With the vision of 'Nation Development through Quality Education', it has expanded its services to 24 major cities in Pakistan.
The Sharjah school's vision reflects that of its home base, with Pamir School committing that it "Enlightens through quality and creative education for knowledgeable, pioneering and global society." The school's Mission is to "provide an engaging and challenging learning in an Islamic environment."
The school states that its main focus will be on "Personal Integrity and Community Involvement which will develop Pakistani culture and society among individuals and boost their social skills."
The school aims to "inspire students to be life-long learners who can thrive as independent learners in a collaborative environment while also preparing them to be productive, accountable, and responsible citizens."
The Sharjah school is led by Mrs. Aziza Faryal. In its first year - based on figures prior to opening - the school expects to enrol around 225 students. So far, whilst the majority of students are from Pakistani families, students from six other nationalities have also enrolled.
Initially, the school will offer two classes in each grade, with a teacher:student ratio of 2:27 in the KG section and 1:30 in the remainder of the school. These ratios are very much on the high side compared with premium fee level schools in the UAE, where 1:9 and 1:11 are closer to the norm. However, as a highly affordable school, it is inevitable that class sizes of around 30 (the maximum) must be expected. Fee information can be found here. Classes will be mixed gender from KG to Grade 4 and single gender from Grade 5 to Grade 12. The school is opening with a slightly higher ratio of boys to girls of 4:3.
Teachers - some 40 in total - have been recruited from Pakistan and the GCC. An additional 3 teaching assistants have also been recruited at this stage. The school aims to to mix the junior and mid-level staff under the supervision of the senior level staff, as "the senior level staff have strong teaching skills, interpersonal skills and the ability to mentor, whereas the junior to mid-level staff have natural aptitude, enthusiasm, potential and the ability to learn."
All teaching staff have a minimum of a Bachelor’s Degree with Bachelors in Education, and also participate in a fixed investment in professional development and online training from Pakistan.
What about the curriculum?
Pamir School will offer an early years curriculum in KG1 and KG2 based on the world-renowned Early Years Foundation Stage from the UK. Mrs. Faryal, in her introduction to the school, notes that the Early Years Foundation Stage is used in order to "give our children the best possible start in life and support to reach their complete potential. We understand that a child’s experience in the early years has a major impact on their future life choices. That is why we aim for high quality in every aspect of our ‘learning community’."
From Grade 1 onwards, students will follow the Pakistani FBISE curriculum taught in English with a focus on both Arts and Sciences. Core subjects will include English, Mathematics, Science, Social studies, Arabic, and Islamic Studies.
According to the school, "The broad Pakistani curriculum enhances [sic] the students to develop their knowledge and understanding, applying, evaluating and practical skills across different subjects from the primary level to the secondary and the higher secondary level and thereby aiming towards the university level."
Pamir School aims to provide "a safe, creative, and challenging learning environment that consists of numerous curricular and extra-curricular opportunities for its students, prepares students for the future by providing knowledge and skills to achieve academic excellence, personal growth and a positive approach towards life in a conduction environment."
The school will plan curricular and co-curricular activities to enable students to develop as confident, independent and versatile individuals, by bringing out their innate qualities to discover, participate and perform in various life situations. According to the school, it will provide an environment that prepares its students for the future by instilling 21st century learning skills and embedding opportunities for students and teachers to access and use advancing technologies.
"New teaching styles and strategies such as Project Based Learning, Flipped classrooms, a Multi-sensory learning approach, Integration of STEM/STEAM into classroom learning, and Practical based learning will be embedded in the curriculum".
Students will be assessed regularly using the CAT 4 and ASSET assessment tools and will also participate in the global TIMMS and PISA tests as required under the UAE's Vision 2020. The school also promises regular PTA meetings and parent-teacher interaction to strengthen the learning process. Workshops and seminars will be organised for students and their parents.
What about provision for students with SEN requirements or Gifts and Talents?
The school has a qualified, experienced SENCO team of two teachers and two support staff. At the time of writing, no students with additional learning needs had been enrolled at the school, but in the event of necessity, parents would be required to source shadow teachers. Six students have been designated Gifted and Talented and will receive additional challenge from the SEN/G&T team.
What about the facilities?
The brand new school building is well-equipped with forty-four classrooms each equipped with interactive white boards and WiFi facilities, four science laboratories, four computer labs, a STEAM lab, art rooms and activity rooms, a learning resource room, and two libraries (separate for Primary and Secondary). There are also indoor and outdoor sports facilities (separately for boys and girls). In addition, a cafeteria and prayer rooms are provided.
Pamir School aims to differentiate itself through the inclusion of the Pakistani curriculum and affiliation with the Federal Board of Pakistan which are its "two most distinguishing features." The school prides itself on being "the only Pakistani school of such an extraordinary infrastructure, teaching capacity, student facilitation and result oriented approach."
Capturing the essence of Pamir School, the school states that it "embraces diversity and strives to provide an academically challenging environment in order to foster intellectual curiosity and a sense of responsibility in our students. To fully educate a person, we are committed to cultivating lifelong learners and balanced, service oriented citizens, who will be prepared to contribute positively in a globally competitive world."
We at WhichSchoolAdvisor.com look forward to seeing the development of this new school, which seems to have high ambition at highly affordable fees. We are particularly interested in receiving feedback from parents, teachers and students as the school establishes itself, in order that this can be shared with other potential members of the school community. If you are a parent, teacher or student at Pamir School, please share your opinions by completing our survey here.
Fees at Pamir School are very definitely at the affordable end of the scale - made more so by substantial discounts that the school is offering to Founding families. Fees in KG are AED 7,500 per year (discounted from AED 10,000) and in Grades 1 to 5 AED 9,000 (discounted from AED 12,000). The fees in Grades 6 to 8 range from AED 9,800 to AED 11,900 (discounted by 30%) and in Grades 9 to 12 from AED 10,800 to AED 12,000 - a whopping 40% discount! Fees may be paid in three installments, by cash in term 1 and post-dated cheques for terms two and three.
Additional fees are limited - a pleasant change for affordable fee schools who seem to have a tendency to add them indiscriminately - with Book Fees of between AED 500-850 (dependent on grade), and uniform fees of AED 350-400.
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