Best International Schools in Dubai for expats

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Best International Schools in Dubai for expats

There are more than 500 foreign schools in the UAE, with an enrollment of over 400,000. You won’t find somewhere else quite as many top-notch educational institutions as in the UAE. Moreover, the local education sector continues to expand, with several new foreign schools opening their doors each year.

Dubai and Abu Dhabi are home to the lion’s share of international schools in the United Arab Emirates. The vast majority are day schools, while just a small percentage provide overnight care for its students. Explore the best international schools in Dubai for expats by checking out the following list!

Best International Schools in Dubai for expats

Top International Schools in Dubai for expats

Following is a list of the best international schools in Dubai, chosen for their excellent academic programs, high KHDA ratings, enthusiastic parent and faculty bodies, and rich selection of co-curricular and other enrichment opportunities.

1. American School of Dubai; Number one international school in Dubai

The American School was founded in 1966 and is widely regarded as one of the top American schools in Dubai that do not charge tuition. Since it welcomes students from over 70 different countries, the school is multicultural.

In terms of nationality, the majority of his school’s faculty is American. There are 188 instructors and 53 TAs at this school, for a respectable ratio of 1 teacher per 10 students. The American School of Dubai (ASD) is an accredited institution that now offers lessons from Kindergarten (KG1) through High School (HS).

Top features American School of Dubai

Students are admitted to the School after the Admissions Committee has approved them for ASD and after they have met the Admissions Standards, which include assessments in various formats depending on the grade level. The school places a strong focus on academic success and often pushes its students to perform at a level one year ahead of what is expected at a comparable school in the United States.

There is a brand new, state-of-the-art campus at the American School of Dubai that spans 23 acres and a million square feet and has wireless internet access. In 2010, the development of the facility was finally wrapped up. Their state-of-the-art facilities allow students to learn about their interests and pursue their passions.

  • Annual fees: AED 56,000–82,581
  • Location: Al Barsha, Dubai
Best International Schools in Dubai for expats

2. Clarion international school in Dubai

The Clarion School, founded in 2016, is another option among some of the top international schools in Dubai. Clarion University offers an excellent American education. Progressive learning with an emphasis on STEAM (Science, Technology, Engineering, Arts, and Math) is used in their unique approach to giving students a good start in life.

Consequently, they have a better chance of becoming confident, healthy adults. Students at the Clarion School Dubai may earn both a high school diploma and an IB Diploma after completing the school’s rigorous 11th and 12th-grade curricula.

Top features of Clarion international school in Dubai

There are 34 trained instructors (nearly all of them are American) and 15 assistants who work together to educate the students.  It has been widely reported that parents in Dubai consider the Clarion campus to be the most aesthetically pleasing of all the schools in the city.

This educational facility combines elements of a spacious ultra-modern family home and an elegant art museum with a big outdoor area that makes extensive use of natural materials for play equipment and landscaping.

  • Annual fees: AED 43,000
  • Location: Asayel Street – United Arab Emirates
Best International Schools in Dubai for expats

3. Cambridge international school in Dubai

Established in 1983, CIS stands for Cambridge International School. The school has been around for a while and is one of the more affordable options in Dubai. Over 56 different countries are represented among Cambridge International School’s student body.

The majority of the student body is Indian (52%), but there are also 17% of students from Pakistan, 7% from Sri Lanka, 5% from Egypt, and 3% from the Philippines.

Top features of Cambridge international school in Dubai

Cambridge International School’s facilities span 200,000 square feet and are split into two sections with their entrances. In addition to four state-of-the-art science labs, IT labs, robotics, and a coffee bar for students over 16, the school also has 120 dynamic smartboards and free Wi-Fi in all classes.

This incredible institution has a medical clinic and a theater with 850 seats. The outside section has a swimming pool, a small soccer field, a large football field, outdoor tennis and basketball courts, and a multifunctional Early Years Foundation Stage (EYFS) indoor and outdoor learning facility.

  • Annual fees: AED 22,000–34,000
  • Location: Al Twar, Dubai
Best International Schools in Dubai for expats

4. Deira international school in Dubai

Established in 2005, Deira International School (DIS) quickly gained a reputation as a premier educational institution in Dubai. The current enrollment is over 1,600 students, representing more than 80 countries of origin. About one-fifth of the student body are native Emiratis.

As many as 182 teachers and 47 aides are available to instruct the student body. The kids at Deira International School Dubai are respectful and tolerant of one another, qualities that are essential to a flourishing educational environment.

Top features of Deira international school in Dubai

The school has high expectations for its students and works hard to help them succeed academically and develop personally. Parents are consulted, and their input is sought by the school as well. Deira International School is located in the center of Dubai Festival City on a spacious 80,000-square-meter site. The school has state-of-the-art scientific labs, libraries, an IB center, and the interactive media center, libraries, and other amenities.

Tuition prices have risen to the upper echelon in recent years. The school’s yearly tuition increases have been at or above the inflation rate for several years. Early Year 1 tuition is AED 39,938, climbing to AED 56,466 in Year 7 and peaking at AED 80,465 in Years 12 and 13.

  • Annual fees: AED 39,938–80,465
  • Location: Festival City, Dubai
Best International Schools in Dubai for expats

5. Jebel Ali international school in Dubai

Established in 1977 as a primary school for the children of expatriate workers, the school has since expanded into a comprehensive international institution. The school continues to provide a full British education, including the International General Certificate of Secondary Education (IGCSE) and Advanced Level Examinations (A Levels).

Jebel Ali School was again found to be Outstanding in the 2018-2019 KHDA inspection. In light of the new KHDA policy mandating a single-day inspection for schools with Very Good and Outstanding ratings, no further termite inspection has been provided.

Top features of Jebel Ali international school in Dubai

In the Foundation classrooms, students are introduced to the English Early Years Foundation Stage Curriculum, while students in further grades are taught the English National Curriculum.

Children in the Early Years Foundation Stage (EYFS) spend their time in Foundation 1 and Foundation 2 courses learning and growing in various ways, including playing, discovery, active learning, creativity, and critical thinking.

  • Annual fees: AED 45,891–74,950
  • Location: Damac Hills (Akoya), Dubai
Best International Schools in Dubai for expats

6. Horizon English international school in Dubai

In 1989, Horizon English School was founded, making it one of the first members of the British Schools Middle East (BSME) network. Currently, the school serves little over a thousand students, an increase of almost fifty over the 2017-2018 school year.

Around 70 countries are represented among the students, with the United Kingdom being the biggest single nationality. Most of the school’s 69 full-time faculty members are from the United Kingdom, and there are also 38 support staff members, including a handful of learning support assistants.

Top features of Horizon English international school in Dubai

The English National Curriculum is used in the classroom. Core disciplines such as Mathematics, Science, Islamic Studies, Music, I.C.T., Physical Education, and Swimming are taught in English.

The Horizon English School has a magnificent and expansive parcel of land in Al Safa, adjacent to Safa Park and the Gulf News headquarters, but set off from the surrounding residential noise. Despite the high demand, the original intentions to construct a secondary school there have been scrapped.

  • Annual fees: AED 40,872–54,770
  • Location: Al Safa, Dubai
Best International Schools in Dubai for expats

7. GEMS American international school in Dubai

GEMS Dubai American Academy stands out as the best option for students interested in the United States’s Common Core State Standards among the many excellent American schools in Dubai.

With over 450 highly-trained faculty members and 2700 students, GEMS Dubai American Academy is one of Dubai’s best American curriculum schools and the only institution in Dubai to have an “Outstanding” grade since 2011.

Top features of GEMS American international school in Dubai

The building’s four levels are efficiently divided: kindergarten through second grade on the ground floor, grades 3-5 on the first story, grades 6-8 above that, and grades 9-12 on the top floor.

To no one’s surprise, high school students receive their study room and lounge at the very top of the building. In addition to a beautiful setting, students can access state-of-the-art laboratories, libraries, theaters, and sports arenas to develop and enjoy themselves.

  • Annual fees: AED 61,190–86,260
  • Location: Al Barsha, Dubai
Best International Schools in Dubai for expats

8. Dubai British international school in Dubai

In accordance with the English National Curriculum, the Dubai British School educates young men and women from three to eighteen. About 1,171 kids call the British school in Dubai home right now. This school is among the best British schools in Dubai.

The requirements of the students and their education are met by a staff of 84 skilled educators, including the principal and other senior leadership team members. Additionally, the school employs thirty adjunct faculty, including a physician, a guidance counselor, and two nurses.

Top features of Dubai British international school in Dubai

The school’s mission is to educate its students by rigorous standards and to do it in an engaging and effective manner.

Despite the school’s modest size and lack of accessible green space, it makes great use of its indoor and outdoor areas. The primary classroom area spans three stories, and the basement may be used for theater-related events. Both the major library and classrooms are located on the ground level.

  • Annual fees: AED 58,000–75,000
  • Location: Jumeirah Park, Dubai
Best International Schools in Dubai for expats

9. Dubai College international school in Dubai

Over 40 years ago, this institution was among the first to adopt the British curriculum. It takes great pleasure in its academic reputation, recently bolstered by its selection as International School of the Year 2019 at the Independent Schools of the Year 2019 awards in London.

The students here call it “DC,” and they know that to succeed, they have to put in a lot of effort. However, it is in great demand, and the waiting list may be rather lengthy, despite its less-than-modern amenities.

Top features of Dubai College international school in Dubai

Those who value education the most, particularly parents of middle- and high-schoolers, should consider this option seriously. Students in Years 7–13 (‘lower school’–”upper school”) are welcome to attend DC, which follows the English National Curriculum.

Students in the twelfth and eleventh grades do 10 GCSEs and a brief information technology course. Once admitted to the Sixth Form, students (who have earned at least five B grades at GCSE) will have the opportunity to specialize in their education by selecting four courses.

  • Annual fees: AED 82,482–93,999
  • Location: Al Sufouh, Dubai
Best International Schools in Dubai for expats

10. Repton international school in Dubai

Repton School Dubai was opened in 2007 and now has a student body of about 1,770. The school offers a curriculum based on the UK’s national curriculum for students in FS1 through Year 11 and the IB Diploma and IB career-focused programs for students in Grades 12 and 13.

Although the majority of students at this school are British, a rising minority (19.7%) are Emirati (over 350 Emirati students are now enrolled). In addition, the SEN staff at Repton has to help 71 disabled students.

Top features of Repton international school in Dubai

With a ratio of 1:10 instructors to students, Repton is one of the better-resourced schools in the UAE. The school has hired 165 skilled teachers and 50 teaching assistants.

The buildings in Repton include an abundance of high-quality amenities. The campus covers an area of over 1.3 million square feet, making it one of the biggest educational facilities in the Middle East.

  • Annual fees: AED 52,863–95,000
  • Location: Nad al Sheba, Dubai
Best International Schools in Dubai for expats

11. Woodlem Park international school in Dubai

Woodlem Park School Dubai is another notable school in the area. The KHDA has given the school its second good rating, indicating it is making significant progress.

The program aims to produce a new generation of educated, globally conscious citizens eager to shoulder their share in ensuring the planet’s long-term viability. The space is designed to foster an atmosphere conducive to learning on many levels, including enjoyment, originality, usefulness, and acceptance of everyone.

Top features of Woodlem Park international school in Dubai

The Woodlem Park school now enrolls students in pre-K through Grade 10. However, only transfers from UAE institutions can attend Grades 9 and 10. With 58 full-time professors and 25 adjunct instructors, this institution has a staff-to-student ratio of 1:11.

Built in the Al Qusais Education Zone, the school, is a massive, cutting-edge structure. Reviews from students and their parents indicate that this is one of the best schools in Al Qusais Dubai.

  • Annual fees: AED 12,000–23,000
  • Location: Al Qusais, Dubai
Best International Schools in Dubai for expats

12. Swiss International Scientific in Dubai

The Swiss International Scientific School was opened in 2015 to provide top-notch education to young students. Students at this institution only receive instruction in the Swiss educational system. It’s also unusual since it offers a dual-language International Baccalaureate course in English and either German or French.

Students represent around 70 countries, with the bulk hailing from Europe. Students from France, Switzerland, Russia, Canada, Germany, the United States, Great Britain, and Italy make up most of the student body.

Top features of Swiss International Scientific in Dubai

Approximately 900 kids are enrolled in the Early Years and Primary Years Programme, while another 600 students are enrolled in the Secondary portion. About 120 students have been classified as having a disability, while another 40 are considered very bright.

Since its inception, the school has significantly increased its infrastructure. An Olympic-sized swimming pool, an aerobics studio, and weight training facilities are just some features of this state-of-the-art sports complex.

  • Annual fees: AED 53,000–99,000
  • Location: Dubai Healthcare City Phase 2, Dubai
Best International Schools in Dubai for expats

13. Dubai English Speaking international school

Originally established in 2005, the school relocated to its current location in Academic City in 2007 and had its grand opening attended by Princess Haya of Jordan. About 150 students graduate each year, most of whom continue their education in the United Kingdom (including several members of the prestigious Russell Group) or the United States.

Since 2012–13, it has had the KHDA’s highest possible Outstanding rating. There are just a few non-profit schools in Dubai, but Dubai English Speaking School and its older sister institution are rated Outstanding.

Top features of Dubai English Speaking international school

These are not merely empty platitudes used to lure in new students; they are honest descriptions of the school’s values and goals, which have the community’s full support. Comments devoid of any kind of criticism are quite uncommon.

Every parent who has filled out our School Survey in the previous two years has had similar responses about the school’s sense of community, security, staff devotion, academic and extracurricular accomplishments, and, most importantly, its welcoming atmosphere.

  • Annual fees: AED 69,865–75,092
  • Location: Dubai Academic City, Dubai
Best International Schools in Dubai for expats

14. Jumeirah College international school in Dubai

Since its inception in September 1999, GEMS Jumeirah College (JC) has inhabited, refurbished, and expanded its initial campus. We can simply say that the school is among the best schools in Dubai.

The College suggested expanding its facilities and its still inadequate sports fields in 2013. Therefore GEMS offered to move JC to a location already held by three other GEMS schools. In light of the “overwhelmingly unfavorable reaction they got from parents over the change, GEMS Education reconsidered its original plan.

Top features of Jumeirah College international school in Dubai

The school helps students prepare for the GCSE examinations at the end of year 11, and then they may go to the GCE Advanced and Advanced Placement levels to get into local and foreign institutions.

The institution has yet to follow the current trend of incorporating IB into its curriculum and has no intentions to do so in the foreseeable future. The school is updating its curriculum to reflect the wider skill set needed for students to achieve future success in academia and the workforce.

  • Annual fees: AED 72,988–91,235
  • Location: Al Safa, Dubai
Best International Schools in Dubai for expats

15. Jumeirah English Speaking international school in Dubai

One of the few non-profit schools in the area, the original Jumeirah English Speaking School (JESS Jumeirah) has taught students the British curriculum for decades.

In 1975, JESS Dubai opened its doors to its first 17 students. Today, the school serves over 2,050 students across its old site and its modern, all-through school in Arabian Ranches. JESS Jumeirah occupies a large plot of land between the very desirable communities of Jumeirah and Umm Suqeim, not far from Safa Park.

Top features of Jumeirah English Speaking international school in Dubai

The buildings are single-story and arranged in age-specific clusters, much like an authentic Australian rural school. The expansive lawn is perfect for baseball, football, and other games.

JESS may not be one of the newest schools in Dubai. Still, its curriculum emphasizes personalized learning, online collaboration, and career and college preparedness and is undeniably cutting-edge.

  • Annual fees: AED 39,837–49,230
  • Location: Al Safa, Dubai
Best International Schools in Dubai for expats

16. Kings international school in Dubai

Located in Umm Suqeim, Kings School Dubai has been recognized as an “Outstanding” school by the KHDA for the last six years. Ages 3-13 are welcome at Kings, where they may get an education following the English National Curriculum from kindergarten up to the eighth grade.

The core of its pedagogical tenet is that students are more likely to be actively involved in learning when exposed to authentic situations and encouraged to take the initiative and responsibility for their own education.

Top features of King’s international school in Dubai

The school was established to provide a superior educational setting in which children may flourish. Extracurricular activities (ECAs) and after-school programs are available at the school and are run by both in-house and outside personnel.

The Umm Suqeim 3 campus of the mixed-gender school has six entrance forms for kindergarten (with twenty students per class) and five forms (with twenty-four students per class) for first grade through sixth grade.

  • Annual fees: AED 43,619–66,383
  • Location: Umm Suqeim, Dubai
Best International Schools in Dubai for expats

17. GEMS Wellington international school in Dubai

GEMS Wellington International School, which can be found in the Al Sufouh neighborhood, is a coeducational institution that educates students ages three to eighteen (from Foundation Stage to Year Thirteen).

The Early Years Foundation Stage (EYFS) curriculum is used for preschool and kindergarten students, while the English National Curriculum is used for students in grades 1 through 12. The KHDA has consistently ranked the school as “Outstanding” since 2009, and the expansive eight-acre campus is a major source of pride.

Top features of GEMS Wellington international school in Dubai

This school’s ability to accurately evaluate students and provide them with a challenging academic environment is a major asset.

Classrooms are equipped with modern technology such as WiFi, interactive whiteboards, and audio-visual and multimedia projectors to quickly and effectively disseminate the most up-to-date knowledge to students.

  • Annual fees: AED 43,941–95,597
  • Location: Al Sufouh, Dubai
Best International Schools in Dubai for expats

18. Dubai International Academy

Dubai International Academy (DIA) is an IB World School with a student population from more than 80 countries. The school provides education from kindergarten through high school with its Primary Years, Middle Years, and Diploma programs.

DIA’s kids have an acceptance rate to elite colleges like Princeton and Yale, among the highest in the area.

Top features of Dubai International Academy

The school promotes a balanced education by providing several extra-curricular activities for students, such as the Eco Club and the Model United Nations, as well as art, music, and sports. The school is considered to be among the best schools in Al Barsha – Dubai.

The cost of attending DIA depends on the student’s current grade level. Tuition for Kindergarten is AED 45,604 per year, while Grade 13 is AED 79,995 per year. Students who speak English as a second language (ESL) and need academic assistance with the language pay an extra AED 4,500 each academic year.

  • Annual fees: AED 41,500–75,470
  • Location: Al Barsha 1, Dubai
Best International Schools in Dubai for expats

19. Nord Anglia International School in Dubai

Al Barsha South is home to Nord Anglia School, just a short drive from Jumeirah Village Circle and around 15 minutes from Emirates Hills. Nord Education owns and operates 35 schools throughout the globe.

The school offers the International Baccalaureate Program to students in grades 6–12 in addition to the English National Curriculum. Various languages, including French, German, Spanish, Mandarin Chinese, and Arabic, are available via its robust language-learning curriculum.

Top features of  Nord Anglia International School in Dubai

The current enrollment at NAIS Dubai is 1,745. Seven hundred and two of these kids attend secondary school, while another 734 attend primary, and 309 are in the early childhood program.

With 161 instructors and 90 TAs, the school can maintain manageable class sizes, with a maximum of 20 students per classroom. Robotics is an extracurricular activity, along with sports, the arts, community service, and others.

  • Annual fees: AED 63,447–95,946
  • Location: Al Barsha, Dubai
Best International Schools in Dubai for expats

20. Dunecrest American international school in Dubai

Launched in 2018, Dunecrest American School aims to offer a complete American education that empowers students to find their skills, follow their interests, and positively affect their communities and the world beyond.”

There are 61 (mostly American) instructors, 15 TAs, and two counselors to help the students. There is far less teacher turnover (14% vs. the UAE average of 22-24%), suggesting that educators are satisfied with their current position.

Top features of Dunecrest American international school in Dubai

Dunecrest, with all of its excellent qualities, is an Esol Education property. ESOL is a prestigious worldwide education provider with 10 campuses in Hong Kong, Cairo, Abu Dhabi, Dubai, Aley (Beirut), Nicosia (Greece), and Bahrain. The company has been around for over 40 years.

PK and KG are taught using the Creative Curriculum, while students in grades 1 through 10 are guided by the AERO Plus Common Core Standards (the version of the Common Core designed specifically for foreign schools). In Dubai, the IB Diploma Programme is provided to students in Grades 11 and 12.

  • Annual fees: AED 46,000–89,000
  • Location: Al Barari, Dubai
Best International Schools in Dubai for expats

21. Emirates international school in Dubai

The Emirates International School (EISM) opened its campus in the Meadows in 2002, making it one of the earliest educational institutions in the Emirates Hills area. The Meadows’ growth was also one of the earliest to inspire ex-pats to purchase their homes in the UAE, which had previously been limited to UAE and GCC nationals only.

Due to its location in one of the city’s most ethnically and racially diverse neighborhoods, EIS Meadows is well situated to provide a wide range of IB courses.

Top features of Emirates international school in Dubai

The International Baccalaureate (IB) curriculum is used at EIS Meadows and Jumeirah. As a continuous school, EIS Meadows provides instruction for students from the Primary Years Programme (PYP) through the Diploma Programme (DP) for high school seniors.

The majority of the faculty comes from the United Kingdom. Moreover, the quality of instruction should stand out as one of the institution’s best features. The annual staff turnover rate at an international school in Dubai is within the typical range, coming in at 20.8%.

  • Annual fees: AED 26,802–79,488
  • Location: The Meadows, Dubai
Best International Schools in Dubai for expats

22. Dwight international school in Dubai

Since deciding to dissolve its partnership with Bloom Education, with whom it started in 2018, Dwight School Dubai has been operating out of its Barsha location. In August 2022, the school relocated to its new permanent campus in Dubai Sports City.

In addition to the 25-meter swimming pool, various outdoor courts, and full-sized indoor hardwood flooring basketball court found on campus, Dwight School Dubai’s connection with Dubai Sports City provides access to an extensive network of athletic facilities and skilled instructors.

Top features of Dwight international school in Dubai

Dwight provides the International Baccalaureate (IB) curriculum, beginning with the Primary Years Programme in Kindergarten and progressing through the MYP to the IB Diploma Programme in Grades 11 and 12.

Dwight School Dubai offers a full range of grades beginning with Early Years (Pre-Kindergarten through Grade 2), Primary Years (Grades 1–5), Middle Years (Grades 6–10), and a Diploma Programme (Grade 12 starts in September 2021).

  • Annual fees: AED 62,700–97,850
  • Location: Dubai Sports City, Dubai
Best International Schools in Dubai for expats

Where are the best international schools in Dubai for expats?

Here is our list of the best international schools in Dubai for expats. If you’re an Indian ex-pat living in Dubai and want your child to attend a school that follows the Indian curriculum, you should check into the top Indian schools in Dubai.

Expats from the United States and the United Kingdom are in the same boat when locating appropriate educational materials from their home countries. What is clear, however, is that your children will get an excellent education at some of the top international schools in Dubai for expats.

It’s true that Dubai is an ideal destination to call home for a variety of reasons. This is why there is such a high demand to buy properties in Dubai. Here’s some excellent news: Alkhail Company can provide a hand. With their extensive experience and size, Al khail Real Estate can ease your way through any challenge in buying a house.

Best International Schools in Dubai for expats

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