Rising School is the only American curriculum school to have opened in Dubai this year.
Led by principal Michael Bartlett, the school opened classes from KG1 to Grade 5, with Grades 6 and 7 due to open in 2018/19. A high school building, currently under construction, should be ready in three years.
Fees at the school range from AED 38,000 per year in KG1 to AED75,000 in Grade 12, with sibling discounts for up to five children.
Education Journal Middle East visited the school for a tour a week before it opened.
Built across three storeys, facilities at Rising School include a STEM lab, library, multi-purpose hall, math lab, an outdoor swimming pool and more.
Class sizes will be capped at 22 in the KG section and 25 in primary and secondary years, the school's director of learning Chassie Selouane tells us.
The school has also signed a whole host of partnerships with local and international organisations, including LEGO Education, National Geographic, and Apple Education.
Rising is the first school to partner with LEGOLAND, whereby the theme park will observe how the school (which is also a LEGO Education School) will implement LEGO Education into its curriculum. This in turn will influence the theme park's educational programmes, which students at Rising will be able to try out.
The school's library will also house a National Geographic corner, while all the teachers at the school will receive training from Apple Education.
"Apple does not do Apple Educators outside of the US, UK or Australia, but they will allow us to be an Apple Education School. So all our teachers will have training from Apple and as far as we know, we'll be one of the first to have all Apple trained teachers," Selouane explains.
Rising School is also looking at offering Mandarin Chinese as an additional language option after school hours. Selouane notes there are 330,000 Chinese nationals living in Dubai, mainly in the International City or Al Barsha neighbourhoods.
"There's not a single Chinese school that offers the Chinese curriculum in Dubai. And there's a reason for that - the parents want the international experience of the school, but they still want their kids to have the Chinese culture and language, and they're okay with them having longer days. A lot of Arabic parents have also been asking for Mandarin as well, because the top business languages in the world are English, Arabic and Chinese. So if kids here are doing Arabic during the day, why not allow them to have the third business language too?" Selouane says.
The school will also offer clubs during schools hours instead of after-school activities. Clubs will be held twice every week, and students will be able to explore a topic of their choosing per quarter (the school year is divided into two semesters and four quarters). Activities will include football, karate, dance, Mandarin, cooking, etc. and will be delivered by teachers.
For more on Rising School Dubai, read:
Meet the Team: Rising School Dubai
Site visit: Rising School Dubai
First look: Rising School Dubai
Published: 19 September 2017 - 10:10 a.m.
By: Parinaaz Navdar