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Articles > Life in the United Arab Emirates > Schools to raise tuition fees beyond 20%

By Wafa Issa and Sunita Menon, "Gulf News" Staff Reporters

Dubai, 16 April 2006

 

URL: http://archive.gulfnews.com/articles/06/04/16/10033498.html

Dubai: Parents should brace for significant increases in fees of at least 26 schools in the UAE whose requests for the hike are under consideration by education authorities.

Dubai-based GEMS Group on Saturday announced that it is applying to the Ministry of Education to authorise school fee increases above 20 per cent across 11 of its Central Board of Secondary School Education (CBSE) and Indian School Certificate (ISC) schools in the UAE. The increases are effective as of April 1.

GEMS said the reasons for the increase are spiralling rents, increasing salaries for teachers and rising costs.

Hugh McPherson, Chief Operating Officer of GEMS Schools, said the current Ministry of Education ceiling of 20 per cent tuition fee increase every three years is "not adequate to cover the schools' rapidly escalating operating costs."

The schools include Our Own English High Schools in Dubai, Sharjah and Al Ain and The Kindergarten Starters in Dubai. GEMS officials said they are applying for appropriate increases at seven other CBSE and ISC-syllabus schools to offset their escalating costs.

Officials at the Education Zone and the Ministry of Education confirmed the news and said that a fee hike was "justifiable" if the schools provided additional quality services to the pupils.

Mona Al Lootah, head of the zone, told Gulf News on Saturday that there are 15 more schools waiting for approval to increase their tution fees.

"As per the federal law tution fees can be raised only every three years. But schools can apply for an earlier increase if they have provided new services in the school," she said.

Contacted by Gulf News, parents denounced the move and lamented they will have to make drastic cuts in their family budgets to send their children to good schools.

"My son studies in Kindergarten Starters in Dubai. A notification of a 20 per cent tution fee hike was sent to us yesterday," said a Dubai-based parent.

The school said it will provide better services, she noted. "[But] I am not going to buy that argument," she said.

RISING COSTS 
Annual fee range in Indian, British and American schools in the UAE
Indian curriculum: Dh2,500 to Dh 5000 British curriculum: Dh22,000 to Dh34,000 American curriculum: Dh 25,000 to 40,000
In addition to the rising tuition fees parents have to pay for stationery, lunches, uniforms, bus services and so on.
School bag Dh45
Shoes (boys) Dh22.95
Shoes (girls) Dh13.95
Socks (pack of 5) Dh12.95
INDIAN CURRICULUM SCHOOL
Uniforms
Shorts Dh25
Trousers Dh35
Shirt Dh22
Skirt Dh30
Sweater Dh30
Tie Dh10
Belt Dh8
T-shirt Dh25
PE trousers Dh35
Blazer N/A Sweater N/A  
BRITISH CURRICULUM SCHOOL  
Uniforms
Bermuda shorts Dh75
Trousers Dh100
Shirt (with logo) Dh75
Skirt Dh00
Pinafore Dh115
Blazer Dh300
Legionary cap Dh40
Hair band Dh13
Pullover/sweater Dh125
Straw hat Dh85
Tie Dh45
T-shirt (PE) Dh75
SCHOOL BUS 
Dh 1200 to 2500 (two way)
BOOKS 

From 400 - 2,500 (Depends on grade and curriculum) 

1 US dollar equals 3.65 UAE dirhams

 

Added: Monday, April 17, 2006
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