Best 10 International Schools in Abu Dhabi

International Education in Abu Dhabi

⇩ Scroll directly to the list of top 10 best schools in Abu Dhabi ⇩

It shouldn’t surprise anyone to hear that international education in the United Arab Emirates isn’t cheap. As a global economic powerhouse, its capital Abu Dhabi offers excellent job opportunities and sky high salaries to expats. But it comes at a cost - eye-watering yearly school fees for your child!

It’s not all bad news though. The standard of education on offer in Abu Dhabi is among the best on the planet. And while the city’s international schools may not be budget friendly, they are somewhat less expensive than neighbouring Dubai. Any of the international schools in Abu Dhabi will set your child up to become a highly skilled professional in adult life. They emphasise maths and science subjects, and languages are taught to a world class standard, too.

The British curriculum dominates in Abu Dhabi’s international schools. To a lesser extent, so do other English-speaking countries’ curricula - American, Canadian, and Australian in particular. Some European and Asian curricula can also be found however, so there is a wide variety to choose from. English is the language of instruction in most international schools, with Arabic offered as a compulsory second language.

The Abu Dhabi Department of Education and Knowledge (ADEK) is the government organisation responsible for regulating international schools in Abu Dhabi. Every two years they assess and rate schools all over the capital and publish detailed results. These reports are freely available from the ADEK website, and can be a useful resource for your school search.

Remember not to take any school’s rankings as the ‘be all and end all’. There are many other factors to consider; the school where your child will be happiest may not necessarily be at the one that tops the ADEK rankings.

The majority of Abu Dhabi’s international schools begin lessons for children as young as 3 or 4 years of age. If you don’t want to start your child in school so young, you don’t have to - the majority will accept children of all ages and stages of education. It is somewhat easier, however, to get a spot in the more sought-after schools if your child is enrolled at the earliest possible stage.

There is one aspect of education in Abu Dhabi that you will have no choice in. If you are not an Emirati citizen, you will be required to pay fees whether your child is attending a public or private school. Education in the United Arab Emirates is only free for Emirati citizens. In almost all schools, students are also required to wear uniforms.

Gender segregation is still common in public schools in the UAE, but is much less common in international schools. The school day will start at around 7am or 8am and finish up at 2 or 3pm, depending on the age of the students. Most schools are centrally located in downtown Abu Dhabi.

Below, we have compiled our top 10 international schools in Abu Dhabi. However, there are another 50 schools to choose from in the city. You can find the best international school for your child by personalising your results. Just fill in your search criteria, and we will calculate a personal score for every international school in Abu Dhabi based on your requirements.

Best 10 International Schools in Abu Dhabi

Out of a total of 60 International Schools in Abu Dhabi.

Based on the aggregated preferences of our users in the last 30 days.

Recommended Schools

The British International School Abu Dhabi

The British International School Abu Dhabi offers a welcoming family community with the highest quality learning opportunities as part of its Global Campus.
Curriculum
IB, British
Language of instruction
English
Ages
3 to 18
Yearly fees - 2020/2021
from: Dirham 50,300
to: Dirham 68,700
Reviews
(4 reviews)
Your score

Other Top Schools

Brighton College Abu Dhabi

Brighton College Abu Dhabi offers its pupils a vibrant and challenging learning environment, and a distinctive British independent school ethos which reflects the values and dynamic culture of Abu Dhabi and the United Arab Emirates.
Located on Abu Dhabi Island in a purpose-built campus next to Khalifa Park, Brighton College Abu Dhabi boasts state-of-the-art facilities and is committed to becoming the leading school in the Middle East. With 144 highly experienced and talented Academic staff and over 100 support staff the school is able to provide an outstanding level of education as witnessed by our latest Inspection reports.
Curriculum
British
Language of instruction
English
Ages
3 to 18
Yearly fees - 2020/2021
from: Dirham 48,900
to: Dirham 77,720
Your score

Ajyal International School - Al Falah

Ajyal is at the heart of the Al Falah community. The school prides itself on its ability to incorporate the culture and heritage of the UAE and Islamic values with a focus on the future. Ajyal Al Falah is busy school where students are encouraged to participate in events internally and externally.
Curriculum
American
Language of instruction
English
Ages
3 to 18
Yearly fees - 2020/2021
from: Dirham 22,880
to: Dirham 46,110
Your score

American International School in Abu Dhabi

The American International School in Abu Dhabi is celebrating its 20th anniversary, having been established in 1995 to provide local and expatriate residents of Abu Dhabi with high quality American education, based on American standards and an international curriculum. AISA received its first accreditation in October 1997 from the Middle States Association of Schools and Colleges (MSA), and in January 2010 was accredited by the Council of International Schools (CIS). AISA offers education from Kindergarten to Grade 12. It was the first school to offer the International Baccalaureate Diploma in the UAE and later became the first school in Abu Dhabi to be authorized to offer the IB Primary Years Program (PYP). In keeping with local regulations, the Secondary School is gender segregated.
Curriculum
IB, American
Language of instruction
English
Ages
4 to 18
Yearly fees - 2020/2021
from: Dirham 31,870
to: Dirham 57,940
Your score

Ajyal International School

Ajyal International School commits to:
- Offering students an education that is meaningful and relevant to their personal, academic, and social life using the Significant Learning Model;
- Providing active learning experiences, avoiding rote learning;
- Using means of assessment that are educative in nature (assessment for learning), qualitative and quantitative, standardised, frequent, performance–based (criterion and standards) and involving self-assessment;
- Aligning its teaching and assessment activities to Significant Learning Outcomes by a process referred to as backward design;
- Collecting wide-ranging performance data to continuously improve learning and teaching, curriculum provision, and institutional efficacy;
- Using technology to enhance learning, and not just to facilitate teaching;
- Providing continuous professional development to all our staff; and
- Adhering to the highest standards of student physical safety, health and personal well-being.
Curriculum
British
Language of instruction
English
Ages
3 to 18
Yearly fees - 2020/2021
from: Dirham 26,500
to: Dirham 47,500
Your score

GEMS Cambridge International School Abu Dhabi

GEMS Cambridge International School (GCIS) – Abu Dhabi, is a thoroughly modern school which takes an equally modern approach to education. Located just off the Sheikh Maktoum Bin Rashid Road in Al Mafraq, Adu Dhabi, this British curriculum school delivers an exceptional standard of education to children at foundation stage all the way through to Year 13, from age 3-18.
The GCIS – Abu Dhabi, is an international school with a real difference, providing children from all over the world with invaluable opportunities to realise their full potential academically, socially and personally.
Curriculum
British
Language of instruction
English
Ages
4 to 18
Yearly fees - 2020/2021
from: Dirham 21,300
to: Dirham 36,220
Your score
Curriculum
IB
Language of instruction
English
Ages
4 to 11
Yearly fees - 2019/2020
from: Dirham 41,910
to: Dirham 61,360
Your score

Virginia International Private School

We aim to produce life-long learners who are innovative and creative, highly competitive in the modern economy and who are champions of UAE culture and heritage. We are a lead school in the United Arab Emirates, developing all learners for successful participation in Society and in the global economy.
Curriculum
American
Language of instruction
English
Ages
4 to 16
Yearly fees - 2020/2021
from: Dirham 25,170
to: Dirham 38,780
Your score

Amity International School Abu Dhabi

AIS provides an outstanding international education based on an enhanced British curriculum.
AIS is located on a state of the art 15 acre campus, very close to Yas Island. This unique location allows AIS to offer extensive sports and arts facilities. All students are encouraged to discover and develop their talents both during the school day and by taking part in AIS numerous co-curricular activities and sports clubs. AIS is currently developing a wide range of water sports such as sailing, rowing and paddling to take full advantage of its Boat House and access to the canal waterways.
Curriculum
British
Language of instruction
English
Ages
3 to 15
Yearly fees - 2020/2021
from: Dirham 43,300
to: Dirham 61,010
Your score

Al Mamoura Academy

At Al Mamoura Academy our vision is to provide:
“An innovative learning community, where we nurture our learners through Collaboration, Leadership and Creativity.”
In our commitment to this vision, we strive to educate the whole child and to give every student the quality education and learning experiences that they deserve, whilst playing a full and active role in our local, national and international communities.
At Al Mamoura we strive for the highest of standards in all we do and to give every student the environment to express creative talents and academic abilities in innovative and enterprising ways; with a focus on cross-curricular learning and a highly specialised middle school curriculum using our highly trained specialist teachers. However, we also understand that young people need much more than a suite of excellent qualifications and so along with academic success we also promote the development of life long skills in order to succeed.
Curriculum
British
Language of instruction
English
Ages
3 to 18
Yearly fees - 2020/2021
from: Dirham 48,800
to: Dirham 72,430
Your score

Find the Best International School in Abu Dhabi FOR YOU!

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