The City School International, Pvt, Sharjah is a UK curriculum school that opened in the Al Azra area of the city in September 2021. It is part of the City School Holdings group.
The City School International Sharjah (TCSIS), is part of the City School Holdings group which is the owner of three further schools located in Dubai. These are The City School International, Dubai, The Alpha School, Dubai and Cedar School, Dubai. The first school in the group, the City School International Dubai, was founded in 1978. It has been rated Good by the KHDA inspectors since 2017-18.
Having opened only in September 2021, the school currently has a relatively small cohort of students (145 as at May 2022), who are split across 11 classes. Students come from 23 different nationalities, with the largest cohorts from Egypt, Pakistan and Sudan. The low student number means a very low teacher:student ratio of under 1:10 in all sections of the school, which is a bonus for families interested in the school. The average class size is currently 13 with a maximum of 19 students.
The school opened for students from FS1 to Year 4 in the 2021-22 academic year, and will add Years 5 and 6 for the start of the 2022-23 academic year.
The school is led by Ms. Christine Woods, who has held a number of positions within the UAE, including Vice-Principal at both Diyafah International School Abu Dhabi, and GEMS Al Barsha National School for Girls, and at Aldar Academies in Abu Dhabi. Ms. Woods holds a teaching qualification from the University of East Anglia with subject specialisations in Maths and Science.
Ms. Woods is supported by a team of 18 teachers and 6 teaching assistants with staff coming from seven different countries including the UK, Pakistan and Egypt. The Principal and Head of Foundation Stage are both very experienced and all teachers have the required teaching qualifications. In fact, some teachers are completing their Masters, NPQSL and Postgraduate diplomas.
TCSIS offers the English National Curriculum, including the Early Years Foundation Stage, and will eventually offer IGCSE and A Level qualifications for senior students. In addition to the core subjects of Maths, English, Science, Arabic, and Islamic Studies (per the English National Curriculum and MoE requirements), the school will also offer French as an additional language for students from Year 5. The teaching is based on a cross-curricular thematic approach.
Due to the constraints imposed by the Covid 19 pandemic, the school has not been able to introduce Extra-curricular activities as yet, but is planning these for the new 2022-23 academic year.
TCSIS told WhichSchoolAdvisor.com that the school is very inclusive and is able to support students with wave 1 and wave 2 special needs. They are supported by the Head of Inclusion and two external Learning Support Assistants. The school supports parents through the process of finding external LSAs. Currently the school does not make any additional charge for supporting students with additional fees, but this is dependent on the support requirements. As all students are English Additional Language learners, provision is integrated into everyday teaching and there is no additional fee.
The school is well resourced with all classrooms fitted with smart boards. Other learning facilities include an auditorium, four science labs, an ICT suite and a library. There are also indoor and outdoor play areas with an astroturf field for sporting activities.
With the support of the City School Holdings group and the experience of the leadership team, The City School International Sharjah clearly wishes to build on the success of the three Dubai schools.
Explaining what differentiates TCSIS from other UK curriculum schools, we were told that:
"The City School International Pvt, Sharjah uniquely captures the brilliance of the English National Curriculum. We use a thematic approach to curriculum planning, which results in a vibrant, hands-on educational experience. Students fully engage in learning that has been designed specifically for them. “Tell me and I forget, teach me and I may remember, involve me and I learn” (Benjamin Franklin)."
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Fees at The City School International Sharjah are moderate ranging with current SPEA approved fees from AED 19,219 in FS to AED 21,341 in Year 4. However all families (both current and new) receive a 20% discount on the approved fees. For 2022-23, FS1 fees will be AED 18,619 rising to AED 22,649 in Year 6.
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