Review of the Best Schools in Dubai

Lifestyle Review of the Best Schools in Dubai
~18 min


Dubai, a vibrant and cosmopolitan city in the Middle East, has a diverse and thriving educational landscape that educates students from different countries and with various backgrounds. The city is home to some of the best schools in Dubai, offering a range of educational programs, including the renowned British curriculum and the esteemed International Baccalaureate Diploma Programme. These institutions provide primary and secondary education that follows the UK National Curriculum, ensuring a world-class learning experience.

With a commitment to excellence, Dubai's schools foster holistic development and prepare students for the global stage. This dynamic environment, coupled with a rich array of international curriculums, makes Dubai a hub for educational opportunities that rival the best in the world.

Education in UAE

Education in the United Arab Emirates (UAE) has undergone a remarkable transformation over the years. As a nation dedicated to progress and development, the UAE has invested significantly in its education sector. Today, it proudly hosts an array of educational institutions, from world-class universities and research centers to schools that offer international and national curricula.

One of the standout features of education in the UAE is its commitment to excellence. The UAE government has established rigorous quality standards, ensuring that schools and universities meet the highest educational benchmarks. The presence of prestigious universities and institutions such as Dubai Academic City and a focus on fostering a globally competitive teaching team have contributed to the UAE's reputation as a hub for academic excellence in the Middle East.

The country has embraced diverse educational approaches, including the American curriculum, the UK National Curriculum, and the International Baccalaureate Programme, making it a welcoming destination for students seeking a wide range of educational opportunities. With its modern facilities, dedicated educators, and a commitment to nurturing talent, the UAE stands as an educational innovation and advancement in the region.

How to Enter a School in Dubai

Entering a school in Dubai is a structured process designed to ensure a smooth enrollment experience. Here's a step-by-step guide.

  1. Complete the Online Application Form. Start by filling out the school's online application form. This initial step typically provides the school with essential information about the student.

  2. Provide Required Documents and Assessment. Once the application is submitted, the school will request specific documents, which may include academic transcripts, identification, and vaccination records. Additionally, you'll need to schedule an appointment, which could involve an interview or a test to evaluate your child's readiness for the school's curriculum. Be prepared to pay any applicable application fees during this stage.

  3. Receive and Accept the Offer. If your child is accepted, you should receive an offer letter from the school following the assessment. Review the terms and conditions outlined in the offer letter carefully. Typically, you'll need to sign and return the letter along with a deposit to secure your child's seat. It's crucial to note that schools often expect this deposit within a specified timeframe, usually within five days of receiving the offer. Seats are typically not held beyond this period. In case the school has a waiting list, it's advisable to act promptly, as waiting lists can move quickly.

Pros and Сons of Studying in Dubai


  1. Diverse Cultural Experience. Dubai is a melting pot of cultures, and studying there exposes you to a rich tapestry of traditions and perspectives, making it a truly international experience.

  2. World-Class Education. Dubai is a location of top-notch universities and schools, offering high-quality education with globally recognized programs and degrees.

  3. Career Opportunities. Dubai's booming economy provides numerous job opportunities for graduates, especially in the finance, hospitality, and engineering sectors.

  4. Safety and Security. Dubai is known for its low crime rate, making it a safe place for students to live and study.

  5. Modern Infrastructure. The city has modern infrastructure, cutting-edge technology, and state-of-the-art facilities, enhancing the learning experience.


  1. Cost of Living. Dubai is known for its high cost of living, including housing, transportation, and daily expenses, which can be a burden for some students.

  2. Weather. The extreme desert hot climate can be challenging for some students. With scorching summers that may be uncomfortable, though air-conditioning is prevalent.

  3. Cultural Adaptation. Adapting to Dubai's cultural norms and regulations, which can be quite different from Western countries, may pose challenges for some students.

  4. Visa Regulations. Visa regulations can be complex and may require students to meet certain criteria to study in Dubai, including sponsorship and financial requirements.

  5. Limited Campus Space. Dubai's rapid growth has led to increased demand for educational institutions, potentially resulting in limited campus space and higher competition for enrollment.

Average Prices for Schools in Dubai

The average prices for schools in Dubai can vary depending on the type of institution. Here's a breakdown:

  1. International Schools. On average, international school fees in Dubai range from approximately 35,000 AED to 120,000 AED per year. Premium international schools with exceptional facilities and a strong reputation tend to charge higher fees.

  2. Private Schools. Private schools in Dubai generally fall within a similar fee range as international schools, depending on their reputation and the facilities they offer students.

  3. Public Schools. Public schools in Dubai, which receive government subsidies, typically have lower fees compared to international and private schools. These fees can vary but are generally more affordable for residents of Dubai.

It's important to note that these are average price ranges, and specific fees can vary from one school to another. Additionally, fees may be subject to change over time, so it's advisable to check with individual schools for the most up-to-date tuition information when considering education options in Dubai.

How to Choose the Best School in Dubai

  1. Research and Prioritize. Begin by researching the available schools in Dubai. Consider your child's educational needs, such as curriculum preferences (e.g., British curriculum, International Baccalaureate, American curriculum), location, and extracurricular activities. Create a list of schools that align with your priorities.

  2. Accreditation and Quality. Ensure that the schools you're considering are accredited and meet quality standards. Look for certifications from respected education bodies or associations, as this can indicate a school's commitment to academic excellence.

  3. Visit Schools. Whenever possible, visit the schools on your list. This allows you to see the facilities, meet with teachers and staff, and get a feel for the school's atmosphere. Ask questions about the teaching approach, class sizes, and student support services.

  4. Teachers Qualifications. Inquire about the qualifications and experience of the teaching staff. Well-qualified and experienced teachers can significantly impact your child's education.

  5. Review Academic Performance. Examine the academic performance of the schools. Look at standardized test scores and graduation rates. This data can provide insights into the school's effectiveness in educating students.

  6. Consider Extracurricular Activities. A well-rounded education includes extracurricular activities. Consider the availability of sports, arts, clubs, and other activities that can enhance your child's learning experience and personal development.

  7. Talk to Current Students and Parents. Connect with current students and parents at the schools you're interested in. They can provide valuable insights into the school's culture, strengths, and areas for improvement.

  8. Financial Considerations. Evaluate the tuition fees and associated costs. Determine your budget and whether the school offers any financial aid or scholarships. Be sure to consider any hidden costs, such as uniforms and transportation.

Best Schools in Dubai

  1. Kings’ School

  2. Dubai International Academy

  3. Gems Wellington International School

  4. Repton School

  5. Dubai British School

  6. DESS - Dubai English Speaking School

  7. Jumeirah College

  8. Dubai College

  9. Brighton College

  10. Kent College Dubai

Kings’ School Dubai British International School

Kings’ School Nad Al Sheba is a prestigious educational institution in Dubai known for its commitment to the British curriculum. It distinguishes itself with specialist teachers for a range of subjects, including French, Spanish, Arabic, and Islamic Education, providing students with a comprehensive and well-rounded education.

The school places a strong emphasis on both academic excellence and extracurricular activities. In addition to its rigorous academic programs, Kings’ School Nad Al Sheba offers opportunities for students to explore their talents in music, swimming, and performing arts. This holistic approach to education contributes to the school's outstanding reputation.

  • Locations:
    • 26th Street, Umm Suqeim, Umm Suqeim 3, Dubai, +971 4 348 3939
    • 3 26th Street, Nad Al Sheba, Nad Al Sheba 3, Dubai, +971 4 237 5555
    • Al Barsha 3, Dubai, +971 4 356 6900
  • Fees: AED 41,000 - AED 82,040
  • KHDA Rating: Very Good

Dubai International Academy

Dubai International Academy, established in 2005, is the first school in the UAE to offer all three stages of the prestigious International Baccalaureate program. As a part of the Innoventures Education group, renowned for its expertise in managing international schools and nurseries in Dubai, the school is committed to providing a world-class education.

With a diverse student body representing over 80 nationalities, Indian students constitute a significant portion of the school's community. Dubai International Academy's commitment to academic excellence is reflected in its impressive average IB Diploma score, consistently in the mid-thirties, surpassing the global average of 30. Graduates from the school have gone on to secure coveted spots at some of the world's most prestigious universities, including Yale, Stanford, Cambridge, and the London School of Economics (LSE).

Gems Wellington International School

GEMS Wellington International School, managed by the esteemed GEMS group in Dubai, is recognized as one of the top British schools in the region. Its consistently high ratings by the Knowledge and Human Development Authority (KHDA) reflect its commitment to excellence in education.

The school's campus is providing top-notch facilities. It has a range of sports amenities, including tennis, basketball, and netball courts, as well as indoor and outdoor pools. There are well-equipped dance and music studios for students with a passion for the arts. The school offers four computer labs and three science labs to foster technological literacy. A unique feature is the observatory, capable of accommodating large groups of students, fostering a love for astronomy.

In addition to its British curriculum, GEMS Wellington International School also offers the International Baccalaureate (IB) Curriculum, catering to students seeking a globally recognized educational pathway.

Repton School

Repton School in Dubai is one of the emirate's premier educational institutions, offering a holistic and comprehensive learning experience with British and International Baccalaureate (IB) curricula. As a sister branch of the renowned Repton School in the UK, it's an exceptional day school and one of the best boarding schools in Dubai. It accommodates students from Years 7 to 13 with a remarkable teacher-student ratio of 1:10.

Repton School has earned a prestigious 'Outstanding' rating from the Knowledge and Human Development Authority (KHDA), affirming its commitment to academic excellence and high standards.

Originally known as Foremarke School and later renamed as part of a partnership with Repton School (UK) and Evolvence Knowledge Investments, Repton School Dubai has experienced organic growth. It has a diverse student body, with approximately two-thirds holding UK passports and the remaining students representing over 40 other nationalities.

  • Location: Nad Al Sheba 3, Dubai
  • Fees: AED 54,449 - AED 97,850
  • KHDA Rating: Outstanding
  • Contact: +971 800 737866

Dubai British School

Dubai British School, a distinguished institution in the realm of British curriculum education in Dubai, is a part of Taaleem, a respected school provider with a longstanding presence in the UAE since 2004. Partially owned by the Government of Dubai, this second campus of the school is situated in the serene locale of Jumeirah Park.

Founded in 2005, Dubai British School has been a reliable educational choice for Dubai residents for several years. The school's commitment to excellence is evident in its consistent 'Outstanding' rating, a recognition it has held since 2017.

DESS - Dubai English Speaking School

Dubai English Speaking School (DESS) is a venerable institution in the landscape of British curriculum education in Dubai. DESS has provided educational excellence since its inception in 1963 as part of the original Dubai English Speaking Schools pair. Located in Oud Metha, Dubai, DESS primarily caters to elementary education following the English educational system. Notably, a significant majority of its students continue their educational journey at its sister school, highlighting its popularity among parents and students.

DESS offers a comprehensive education to students from various backgrounds, spanning from FS-1 to Year 6. The school is known for its outstanding educational facilities and a wide range of extracurricular offerings. Students benefit from amenities such as a swimming pool, basketball and netball courts, as well as rugby and football pitches. DESS has consistently achieved an 'Outstanding' KHDA rating, reflecting its unwavering commitment to educational excellence.

Jumeirah College

Aligning itself with the National Curriculum of England, Jumeirah College has rapidly gained acclaim and popularity in the educational landscape. This esteemed institution is a world-class facility, which includes a well-stocked library, recreational areas, tennis courts, netball courts, state-of-the-art science labs, fitness centers, and a swimming pool.

Jumeirah College's commitment to educational excellence is reflected in its capacity to accommodate over a thousand students, all under the guidance of highly trained and experienced educators. With an 'Outstanding' KHDA rating, Jumeirah College is undoubtedly one of the finest educational establishments in Dubai.

Dubai College

Dubai College is a highly esteemed educational institution that consistently ranks at the top of parents' dream school lists, thanks to its impeccable reputation. The dedicated teaching and non-teaching staff at Dubai College are renowned for their expertise and unwavering commitment to fostering the well-rounded development of students.

Despite its status as an established school, Dubai College maintains a commitment to modern teaching practices and a robust curriculum that ensures an exceptional learning experience for its students. The school also places significant emphasis on non-academic activities, including music and arts, with the auditorium hosting engaging drama performances and concerts.

Dubai College's 'Outstanding' KHDA ranking is a testament to its holistic approach to education, underpinned by a four-pillar strategy that encompasses sporting, philanthropic, academic, and creative endeavors.

Brighton College

Brighton College Dubai, a proud member of the esteemed Brighton College family of schools, offers a comprehensive British curriculum catering to students aged 3 to 18 years. This co-educational institution provides an educational journey from early years through to GCSEs and A levels, aligning itself with the rigorous academic standards of its parent school in the UK.

Situated on a sprawling 20-acre campus, Brighton College Dubai has an array of specialized facilities designed to enrich the educational experience. These include a state-of-the-art black-room drama production suite, a 400-meter running track, a full-length outdoor swimming pool, a design technology studio, a dance studio, and a multi-purpose gym and sports hall. The school also offers a range of sports amenities, including rugby and football pitches, tennis courts, padel tennis courts, and netball courts.

Kent College Dubai

Kent College Dubai, an extension of the prestigious Kent College in the UK, offers a world-class British education experience for students hailing from more than 80 different nationalities. Owned by a company affiliating to the Lycée Francais de Dubai, this institution distinguishes itself as one of the few 'British' schools in Dubai that maintain close ties with its sister school in the UK.

Nestled on a vast 53,000-square-meter campus, Kent College Dubai caters to students from FS1 to Year 13, providing a continuum of learning. The school's comprehensive facilities include shaded play areas, expansive sports fields, and a swimming pool. Kent College also strongly emphasizes recognizing talent and awards scholarships to deserving students.

One noteworthy aspect of the school's commitment to holistic development is its participation in The Duke of Edinburgh's Award, a renowned youth program. Students engage in volunteering, fitness activities, social tasks, and expeditions in the UK or other countries as part of this enriching program.

  • Locations: Al Abjar Street, Exit 12, Wadi Al Safa, Nad Al Sheba 2, Meydan South, Meydan
  • Fees (for the year 2023/2024): AED 55,620 to AED 100,940
  • KHDA Rating: Good
  • Contact: +971-04-318-0700

Editorial Opinion

The education landscape in Dubai has evolved into a diverse and thriving industry, offering a range of options to cater to the needs of its diverse population. From primary education following the English National Curriculum to secondary schools with a British-based education, Dubai's educational institutions provide a multitude of choices. Prominent educational groups contribute significantly to the diverse array of schools, including those offering an American curriculum.

Furthermore, international partnerships have led to the establishment of institutions enriching Dubai's educational landscape. The city also has several well-established schools known for their outstanding academic achievements. With a variety of programs and curricula on offer, Dubai's education sector continues to grow, offering parents and students a wealth of opportunities for a well-rounded education.



  • 1.

    What are the primary education options available in Dubai?

    Dubai offers a wide range of primary education options, including schools following the British and American curricula. Gems Education Group, a prominent player, provides various primary school choices.

  • 2.

    Are there international schools in Dubai?

    Yes, Dubai is home to numerous international schools offering a global perspective on education. These schools cater to students from diverse nationalities and often follow international curricula such as the International Baccalaureate (IB) program.

  • 3.

    What extracurricular activities are available in Dubai schools?

    Dubai schools offer a wide range of extracurricular activities, including sports, music, arts, drama, and Model United Nations programs. Many schools have well-equipped facilities to support these activities.

  • 4.

    What are the fees like for Dubai schools?

    School fees in Dubai vary widely depending on factors like curriculum, facilities, and reputation. On average, international school fees range from approximately 35,000 AED to 120,000 AED per year.

  • 5.

    Are there Dubai schools offering specialized programs like the Middle Years Program (MYP) or the Model United Nations (MUN)?

    Yes, Dubai schools do offer specialized programs like the Middle Years Program (MYP) and Model United Nations (MUN) to enhance students' overall development and provide unique learning experiences.

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Update date: 05/22/2024