International Schools in Abu Dhabi


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Expats children are not allowed to attend public schools in Abu Dhabi, thus all foreign parents will need to enrol their children in an international (private) school. Seat scarcity is a serious problem in the UAE's capital, and finding an open slot can prove challenging.

Some expat parents end up homeschooling their children while waiting for space to become available, and others refuse to sign a contract until they've secured a seat for their little ones.

Either way, parents should make an effort to begin the admissions process as soon as possible.

International schools in Abu Dhabi


Abu Dhabi International School
Gender: Co-educational   
Curriculum: American, British or International Baccalaureate (IB)
The Abu Dhabi International School offers various systems of education for kindergarten through to grade twelve students; though, only the American system is available until after the completion of grade eight. Depending on age, the student seeking entrance is subject to interview.  Read more.

Abu Dhabi Grammar School
Gender: Co-educational
Curriculum: Canadian
Ages: 3 to 18
The Abu Dhabi Grammar School is situated situated on-island in the Tourist Club Area and has 750 students from 36 different nationalities and teaches the Canadian curriculum from Nova Scotia. Read more.

Al Ain English Speaking School
Gender: Co-educational
Curriculum: British
Ages: 3 to 18
AAESS follows the National Curriculum of England and is a member of the Association of British Schools in the Middle East and the Incorporated Association of Preparatory Schools (UK). Read more.

Al Ain International School
Gender: Co-educational
Curriculum: British
Ages: 3 to 18
The curriculum broadly follows the English National Curriculum from the Early Years Foundation Stage (kindergarten), through to Year 8, modified to reflect the UAE’s rich culture. Read more.

Gender: Co-educational
Curriculum: British
Ages: 11 to 18
Al Bateen is a new school, but is run by the ALDAR group which owns three other schools in Abu Dhabi. The doors opened in September 2011 and their facilities are state-of-the-art. The school aims to provide its students with a world-class, holistic, international education. Read more.

Gender: Co-educational
Curriculum: British
Ages: 3 to 11
Situated in downtown Abu Dhabi, the Al Muna Primary opened in September 2009, and was the third school to be opened by the ALDAR Academies group and has become a popular choice with English-speaking expats. Read more.

Al Mushrif Primary
Gender: Co-educational
Curriculum: British
Ages: 3 to 11
The Al Mushrif Primary School opened its doors in September 2011. Although new to the scene, the school benefits from being part of the established ALDAR education group. The school currently shares facilities with the Al Bateen Secondary School. Read more.

Al Yasmina School
Gender: Co-educational
Curriculum: British
Ages: 3-18
Al Yasmina School follows the English National Curriculum for children from 3 to 18 years, with additional lessons in Arabic, Islamic and UAE Social Studies to meet the requirements of the UAE ministry of education. Read more.
 
GEMS American Academy Abu Dhabi
Gender: Co-educational
Curriculum: American
Ages: 3 to 13
GEMS American Academy, Abu Dhabi is the most modern and prestigious international school in Abu Dhabi.  The state-of the art campus caters to students from over 40 nationalities, from KG  to Grade 10.  Our academic program captures the best of both worlds by offering an enriched  American curriculum within the International Baccalaureate framework. Read more

American Community School
Gender: Co-educational
Curriculum: American
Ages: 3 to 18
Founded in 1972, this not for profit institution has a well-deserved reputation as one of the finest schools in Abu Dhabi. There are over 1000 students in the school, 59 percent American and the rest from 49 different countries. Read more.

American International School
Gender: Co-educational and Girls only options
Curriculum: American and IB
Ages: 3 to 10
The American International School has two sections, a co-educational section and a girls only section, and offers an American style of curriculum from pre-kindergarten to grade twelve. It’s necessary to submit report cards with the application. Read more.

Brighton College
Gender: Co-educational and Girls only options
Curriculum: British and International Baccalaureate
Ages: 3 to 18 (by 2016)
Situated on Abu Dhabi Island, Brighton College is a new joint venture between Brighton College in the UK and Bloom Properties, which opened its doors at the end of 2011. Read more.

The British School Al Khubairat
Gender: Co-educational   
Curriculum: British
Ages: 3 to 18
Not to be confused with Abu Dhabi's other British school (located off-island), The British School Al Khubairat was established in 1971 and offers students a British style of curriculum from the ages of 3 to 18. Many expat parents assert that it is the best international school in Abu Dhabi. Students’ past report cards are required for admissions. Read more

Gender: Co-educational   
Curriculum: British
Ages: 3 to 18
Opened in 2009, the British International School (BISAD) has already developed an excellent reputation in Abu Dhabi. It is part of the Nord Anglia Education group, a body that’s become old hand at delivering excellent education opportunities to foreign communities based abroad.  Though the school teaches the English National Curriculum, it looks to gain International Baccalaureate (IB) accreditation in the near future, and accepts students of all nationalities with open arms. Read more.

The GEMS Cambridge High School
Gender: Co-educational
Curriculum: British
Ages: 3 to 18
Established in 1988, The Cambridge High School, Abu Dhabi, provides high quality education based on The National Curriculum for England to students from Kindergarten to Year 13. Set in a spacious campus, the school is divided into two Sections: the Junior (Year 1 to Year 6) including the Kindergarten and the Senior School (Year 7 to Year 13). Outstanding teaching, variety of opportunities and good facilities make the school one of the best in the city. Read more.

Repton School Abu Dhabi
Gender: Co-educational
Curriculum: British
Ages: 3 to 6
Welcoming families from all nationalities, Repton School Abu Dhabi offers the very best in British education, within the context of an international environment and epitomised by the school’s philosophy of ‘the best for every child’. Read more

The Pearl Primary School
Gender: Co-educational
Curriculum: British
Ages: 3 to 11
The school follows the National Curriculum for England, with additional lessons in Arabic language, Islamic Studies and Social Studies to meet the requirements of the UAE Ministry of Education and Abu Dhabi Education Council. Read more.

GEMS World Academy
Gender: Co-educational
Curriculum: American
Ages: 3 to 11
GEMS World Academy, Abu Dhabi, offers children an exclusive Kindergarten and Early Elementary (ECE) program.  It provides the very best of teaching and learning practices for students from KG – Grade 5. Read more.





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