Education in Doha is of a world-class standard. A wide range of private international schools in Doha cater to various needs and follow curricula from all over the world, including British, American, French, German, and Canadian.

While expat children can attend some Qatari schools in Doha, most parents opt to send their children to international schools. These offer a smoother transition for children accustomed to studying their home country's curriculum. Although legislation on this issue is ambiguous, some parents in Doha prefer homeschooling, which presents its own challenges. 

Public schools in Doha

Public schools in Doha receive government funding and provide free tuition to all citizens and eligible expat students. Most students are Qatari, although expats with the right connections might be able to secure a place. The quality of education at these schools is excellent, and they’re a good option for foreigners looking to settle down in Doha long-term and want their children to be integrated into Qatari society.

Public and independent schools share the same compulsory subjects: Arabic, English, maths, science and Islamic studies. Overseen by the Ministry of Education and Higher Education, public schools include preschool, primary school (Grades 1 to 6), preparatory school (Grades 7 to 9) and secondary school (Grades 10 to 12).

At secondary school, students can select either general education or specialisations in a technical school like those for banking, business administration, and science and technology.

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International schools in Doha

Even though the standards of local schools are good, most expat children attend private international schools in Doha. There are various curricula, including the International Baccalaureate (IB), British, American, Canadian, German, French and Indian systems. Most families choose a curriculum similar to the one in their home country, while families who move frequently often prefer the IB curriculum.

When picking a school, parents must consider several factors, such as the curriculum and whether it’s internationally recognised, facilities, proximity to home and work, and transport options. Rush hour in Doha means that children can spend hours travelling to and from school, and not all schools provide a bus service. Living close to school makes it easier for expat kids and their parents.

Expats should also ensure that a school is accredited by Qatar National School Accreditation (QNSA) and recognised in their home country.

Education in Doha can be a significant expense, so parents should try to negotiate school fees into their employment contract or ensure that they budget carefully. We also recommend that parents plan well in advance to secure a place for their child. Various documentation is required, including visa and residence permits, previous school records, records of the child's health history, and a letter of recommendation.

See our breakdown of the Best International Schools in Doha.

Nurseries in Doha

Expats with young kids can easily find a suitable nursery in Doha, either public or private. Sometimes, larger international schools will have nurseries linked to them.

Qatari kindergartens encourage children to be active and creative, aiming to help them grow and develop their personalities. Nurseries in Doha offer high-quality educational and play materials with experienced teachers. Young children are unlikely to face language barriers, as they learn both English and Arabic in public nurseries, while private daycares cater to additional languages.

Special-needs education in Doha

Empowering people with disabilities is one of Qatar’s top priorities, and this includes quality integrated special-needs education in mainstream classrooms where possible.

In most cases, both public and private schools, tailor support services to meet diverse needs. These services are designed to support learners with a range of needs, including those with learning differences, physical, sensory, and developmental challenges; emotional, behavioural, and communication differences; and students with autism spectrum conditions and intellectual differences.

Comprehensive and integrated teaching incorporates adapting curricula, introducing and engaging with specialised materials and technology, and support from specialists and all school staff.

Although schools are becoming increasingly integrated, there are specialised schools that specifically cater to students with disabilities. Specialised schools include Al-Hidaya schools for students with intellectual disabilities and separate schools for students with hearing impairments.

Homeschooling in Doha

Some parents avoid the admissions process in Doha and decide to homeschool. Doha Home Educators (DHE) has been pivotal in creating an organised network for homeschoolers and regularly organises lessons, activities, and events. Given the vague homeschooling regulations in Qatar, DHE advises expat parents to follow the regulations of their home country.

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Tutors in Doha

Tutoring in Doha, like elsewhere around the world, is a popular and growing industry. There are many online platforms where expats can find tutors for a wide spectrum of subjects, languages and curricula, from the IB, IGCSE and A-Levels to the Qatari curriculum. TeacherOn and MyPrivateTutor are among the most commonly used online platforms.

Useful links

  •  TeacherOn is an international online service that connects tutors and students for a variety of subjects
  •  To have your child matched with a wide range of tutors, try MyPrivateTutor Qatar

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