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InspectionReport

TheGulfInternationalAcademy

AcademicYear20142015

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TheGulfInternationalAcademy

InspectionDate
SchoolID#

2326February2015
159

LicensedCurriculum

American

NumberofStudents

996

AgeRange
Gender
Principal
SchoolAddress

4to18years
Mixed
DaliaKamel
28StreetandKhaledBinSultanStreet,FalajHazzaa,AlAin

TelephoneNumber

+971(0)37676905

FaxNumber

+971(0)37676908

OfficialEmail(ADEC)
SchoolWebsite

gulfintacad.pvt@adec.ac.ae
www.gipaalain.com

Dateoflastinspection 1417April2013

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Theoveralleffectivenessoftheschool
Inspectorsconsideredtheschoolinrelationto3performancecategories
BandA Highperforming(overalleffectivenessgrade1,2or3)
BandB

Satisfactory(overalleffectivenessgrade4or5)

BandC

Inneedofsignificantimprovement(overalleffectivenessgrade6,70r8)

TheSchoolwasjudgedtobe:

BANDB;

GRADE4

Themainstrengthsoftheschoolare:

the principals passion, drive and strong commitment to improve the


qualityofstudentslearning
teachers are enthusiastic, committed and positively embrace the wide
rangeofprofessionaldevelopmentopportunities
studentsbehavewell,havepositiveattitudestolearninganddemonstrate
respectforeachotherandfortheirteachers
there are effective communications with parents, who are positive about
thesupportandcaretheirchildrenreceive
theschoolpositivelypromotestheheritage,cultureandvaluesoftheUAE
whichareproudlyembracedbystudents
kindergarten is developing and improving and is creating a positive
foundationforfuturelearning.

Themainareasforimprovementare:

consistency in the quality of teaching and learning so that most lessons


securegoodacademicprogress
greater effectiveness of the leadership and management by adopting an
even more rigorous and analytical approach to assessing the quality of
teachingandtheacademicstandards
provisionofalibrarywithagoodrangeofEnglishandArabicbooks.

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Introduction
Theschoolwasevaluatedby5inspectors.Theyobserved98lessons,conducted
meetings with senior staff, heads of department, support staff, students and
parents. They analysed test and assessment results, scrutinised students work,
analysedthe241responsestotheparentsquestionnaireandconsideredmanyof
the schools policies and other documents. Senior leaders were involved
throughouttheprocessandundertook9jointobservationswithinspectors.

DescriptionoftheSchool
The Gulf International Private Academy (GIPA) opened in September 2001. Its
visionis:Weareanacademythatoffersqualityeducationandgraduatesfuture
leaders equipped with enlightened human values. The mission is: We strive to
create a safe, respectful and centred learning environment encouraging whats
bestinourstudentsandstaff.Ourgoalistonurtureapassionforknowledge,a
sense of responsibility towards society and faith in the ability to transform lives
andcommunitiestothebetter.
The student population is 996, from Kindergarten (KG) to Grade 12, and 55% are
boys.Thereare163studentsinKG,470inGrades1to5,240inGrades6to9and
123inGrades10to12.TheschoolfollowsanAmericancurriculum;theMinistryof
Education(MOE)curriculumisusedinArabic,Islamiceducationandsocialstudies.
Students take a range of standardised tests, including Measures of Academic
Progress(MAP),ScholasticAptitudeTest(SAT),CommonEducationalProficiency
Assessment(CEPA)andTestofEnglishasaForeignLanguage(TOEFL).
Theschoolcatersforstudentsfrommanydifferentnationalities:36%areEmirati,
12% Egyptian, 12% Jordanian 11% American, 7% Syrian, 4% Palestinian and 18% from
othernationalities.AlmostallstudentsareMuslimand88%areofArabheritage.
Theschoolhasidentified4%ofthestudentsasgiftedandtalented(G&T)and7%of
students as having special educational needs (SEN); 1% with severe learning
difficulties and 6% with moderate learning difficulties. A further 10% of students
who require English language support are identified. Admission to the school
fromGrade1toGrade12isdeterminedbyinterviewandtests.
The principal has been in post for 6 years. The leadership team comprises the
principal, viceprincipal and 4 heads of section. A board of trustees has
responsibilityforoverseeingthequalityofeducation.Theschoolhas76teachers
andturnoverwas20%lastyear.SchoolfeesrangefromAED10,200toAED22,000
whichplacestheschoolinthelowtomediumcategories.

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TheEffectivenessoftheSchool

Evaluationoftheschoolsoveralleffectiveness
TheGulfInternationalAcademyhasimprovedsignificantlyinmanyareassincethe
lastinspection.Allaspectsoftheschoolarenowsatisfactoryandimprovingwith
theexceptionofresources,whicharesatisfactory.Thisisduetoacombinationof
highly supportive ownership, the strong drive of the principal and the shared
commitment of all staff to improvement. Resourcing is satisfactory due to
inadequate provision for information and communications technology in KG,
limitedreadingmaterialandrestrictedresourcesforscience.
Theimprovingpictureisdemonstratedbythevarietyofstrategiesinclassrooms
that now provide more exciting and stimulating opportunities for learning. The
school has effective systems to track academic progress. The new leadership
structureprovidesclarityinresponsibilitiesandaccountabilitiesofseniorstaff.
Studentsattainment&progress
Studentsattainmentandprogressaresatisfactoryandimproving.Grade6and9
MAP data indicates attainment broadly in line with international standards in
English, mathematics and science. Attainment and progress in most lessons is
satisfactoryorbetter.Attainmentandprogressaresatisfactoryandimprovingin
English, mathematics, Arabic and information and communications technology
(ICT).TheyaresatisfactoryinIslamiceducation,socialstudiesandscience.
StudentsenterschoolwithlittleornoEnglish.TheuseofEnglishinteachinghelps
studentstorapidlyacquirespeakingandlisteningskills.Childrenmakebetterthan
satisfactory progress, particularly in the acquisition of English and Arabic oral
skills.ChildreninKGmakebetterthansatisfactoryprogressinallsubjectsexcept
in ICT,which isunsatisfactory.Arabicspeakingand listening skillsareaboveage
relatedexpectations.
The basic skills of speaking, listening, reading, writing, numeracy and the use of
ICT are satisfactory and improving. Thinking and independent learning skills are
satisfactory, with students having limited opportunities in some lessons to
develop their own ideas. SEN students make satisfactory progress due to the
structured support they receive. Higher achieving students make satisfactory
progress;insomelessons, they find thelevel of worktooeasyand do not have
sufficientchallengeandextension.
The school uses the outcomes of standardised MAP tests increasingly well to
monitorstudentsprogressandtovalidatetheirowninternalassessments.Datais
used effectively to identify students in need of intervention and devise
improvement plans to enhance their progress. SAT test data demonstrates that
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Grade 12 students are performing broadly in line with international averages. In


KG,assessmentisinsufficientlydevelopedtomonitorallageappropriateaspects
oflearning.Academictrackingissatisfactory.
Studentspersonaldevelopment
Students personal development is satisfactory and improving. Relationships are
caringandsupportivethroughouttheschool.Studentsbehavewell,havepositive
attitudes to learning and are respectful to adults and one another. In most
lessons,studentsareengagedandshowenthusiasmfortheirlearning.Inasmall
numberoflessons,afewboyslosefocuswhennotactivelyinvolved.
Theschoolpositivelypromotestheheritage,cultureandvaluesoftheUAE.Thisis
demonstrated in daily assemblies, lessons and other celebrations. Students
proudlyembracetheirnationalcultureandvalues.Theyalsorespectthevaluesof
thediversecommunitytheschoolserves.
Students have some opportunities to develop leadership skills through the
studentcouncil.Someteachersgiveyoungerstudentsfurtheropportunitiestobe
group leaders and class helpers. Childrens social skills development is not
monitoredeffectively.Thereareonlylimitedoccasionswhenstudentsareableto
developtheirleadershipskillsinmiddleandhigh school.
Studentshaveagoodunderstandingofhowtoliveasafeandhealthylife.Thisis
promoted well through assemblies, in lessons and through talks from outside
organisations.Attendanceiswellaboveaverageat97%.
Thequalityofteachingandlearning
The quality of teaching and learning is satisfactory and improving in all subjects
and phases. The very large majority of lessons were judged to be at least
satisfactory. Around 10 % were deemed good; a large majority of these lessons
were in English and mathematics. There were examples of effective teaching
acrossallyearsandgrades.
Classroomrelationshipsarepositiveandsupportive.Teachershavesecuresubject
knowledgeandplaneffectivelytoengagestudents.Teachingassistantsareused
welltoprovideeffectivesupport.ThisisparticularlystronginKG,whereteaching
assistants are rapidly developing their role. Students are generally enthusiastic
and show interest in their learning. They work well both on their own and
collaborativelywithothers.
In the most effective lessons, learning objectives are shared with students and
there is less teacher talk. Most students can explain what they have to do and
share their understanding. Tasks are matched to students learning needs and
aptitude and questioning skills are used well to extend learning. Students are
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active learners and work in a variety of ways, including collaboratively and


independently. They are able to solve problems, draw conclusions and present
their own ideas. In the least effective lessons, objectives are not always shared
withstudentsandoften thelearning outcomesarenotclear.Toomuch teacher
talk limits opportunities for students to take ownership of their learning.
Questioning is often limited to a few students and many are inactive for long
periods of time. Assessment for learning is not always effectively used to plan
activitiesthatmatchindividualstudentsneeds.
Teachers throughout the school are increasingly using a variety of strategies to
stimulate students learning. In some lessons, the activities are differentiated
effectively to provide appropriate challenge and support for different groups of
students. In other lessons, there is insufficient challenge for high achievers. The
development of 21st Century skills is inconsistent. Teachers in some lessons
providestepbystepguidanceforstudents,withlimitedopportunitiesforthemto
exploretheirownideas.Thereareexamplesofhighlyeffectivepracticeinsome
lessons where students are given the opportunity to apply their knowledge and
skillsinchallengingeverydaysituations.
Teachersregularlyassessstudentsprogressanduseitwelltoplaninterventions
for underperforming students. Assessments are not always used effectively to
plandifferentiatedactivitiesoridentifyimprovementtargets.Astrongcontinuous
professional development programme supports the school in delivering a whole
school approach. Teachers are positive about the effectiveness of their
professionaldevelopmentopportunities.
Meetingstudentsneedsthroughthecurriculum
The implementation of a broad and balanced curriculum more than adequately
meetsthelearningneedsofmoststudents.TheCommonCoreStandardsareused
well to drive lesson planning. This enables students to learn at and, in some
lessons,aboveageappropriatelevels.TheuseofEnglishinlessonsinscienceand
mathematicshelpsdevelopandimprovetheleveloffluencyamongstudents.The
MoE curriculum provides continuity for subjects taught in Arabic. The core
curriculum is furtherenriched withcourses in art, French, ICT and physical
education. The curriculum is modified in most lessons to satisfactorily meet the
learningneedsofSENstudents.Thecurriculumisnotconsistentlywelladaptedto
matchtheneedsofthemoreable.
The school offers a range of extracurricular activities to increase students
learning opportunities and experiences. They include clubs such as Holy Quran
memorization,studentcouncil,drama,robotics,soccer,rugbyandgirlsandboys
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scouts. The school has good links with external partners such as civil defence,
communitypolice,RedCrescentandanumberofuniversities.
Theprotection,care,guidanceandsupportofstudents
There are better than satisfactory systems in place for the protection, care,
guidanceandsupportofstudents.Thereisacaringandsupportiveclimateinthe
school and students feel safe and happy. The 4 heads of section and the 7
supervisors provide good support for the academic and social welfare of the
students.Therearesatisfactoryproceduresformonitoringstudentsprogressand
effective intervention strategies, particularly for supporting underachieving
students.
Most teachers have wellestablished routines and behaviour management
strategies.Behaviourinmostclassroomsandaroundtheschoolisgenerallygood.
Bullying is rare and there are clear procedures if it should happen. There are
rigorouschecksonalladultsworkingintheschoolandtheyhaveADECapproval.
Achildprotectionpolicyisinplaceandunderstoodbyallstaff.Thereare2prayer
roomsforboysandgirls.The2clinicshavesecurefacilitiesforthesafestorageof
medicinesandarerunbytrainednurses.Theroomsaresmallanddonotprovide
sufficientprivacy.
Older students have effective opportunities to receive guidance on careers and
universitycoursesthroughvisitsand guestspeakersinvitedtotheschool.Some
students indicated that they would welcome more help in completing their
universityapplications.
Thequalityoftheschoolsbuildingsandpremises
The buildings and facilities provide a more than adequate environment for
learning. The school is safe, clean and fit for purpose. Most classrooms are of
sufficientsizeforthestudentnumbersineachclass.Afewclassroomsaresmall
andcrampedwhenstudentnumbersarelargerorwhenolderstudentsusethem.
The science facilities are adequate. The biology laboratory in the girls section
limits educational opportunities due to its small size. The 2 ICT rooms in each
building provide good opportunities to promote students ICT and 21st Century
skills.
The large sport hall in the girls section and the 2 soccer fields, basketball and
volley ball courts available for the boys provide more than adequate facilities to
promotestudentsphysicalandsportingexperiences.Thereisnooutdoorareain
thegirlssectionforphysicalorrecreationalactivities.Thereisnolibraryfacility.
Thereisalearningresourcecentreinthegirlscampusandreadingareasaround
the school. Based on a constructive suggestion from the student council, all
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studentsandstaffhaveasilentreadingsessioninthetimebetweenassemblyand
thefirstlesson.
Security is good in both buildings. School records show that all maintenance
checksarecarriedoutandequipmentisregularlytested.Evacuationprocedures
arepractisedregularly.
Theschoolsresourcestosupportitsaims
The schools resources satisfactorily support its aims and provide appropriate
stimulusforstudentslearning.Therearesufficientteacherstomeettheschools
curriculumneeds.Theyaresuitablyqualifiedandhavesecuresubjectknowledge.
Theyshowcommitmentanddedicationtotheschoolscontinuousimprovement
agenda. The teaching assistants work in partnership with teachers and provide
valuablesupportforstudentslearning.ThisisparticularlystronginKG.
Since the last inspection, there has been an increase in the availability and
utilisation of technology. The 4 ICT rooms are well resourced and are used
effectivelytodevelopstudentscomputerskillsandareavailableforuseinother
subjects.AllstudentsinGrades6to9haveiPadstheycanuseinlessons.During
theearlymorningsilentreading,somestudentsusetheiPadstoreadeBooks.The
provision of ICT in KG is unsatisfactory in extending the range of learning
opportunitiesforchildren.Theabsenceofaschoollibraryfacilitydoesnotmeet
theneedsofthe21stCenturylearningcommunity.Therearereadingcentres,but
therangeofbooksavailableislimited.Scienceresourcesarelimitedinproviding
opportunitiestoapplyknowledgeandskillsinpracticalways.
Schoolsprocedurestoensuretransportiswellmaintained,safeandreliableare
suitable.Foodisstoredandconsumedinahygienicandhealthymanner.
Theeffectivenessofleadershipandmanagement
Leadership and management are satisfactory and improving. The principal
provides drive and a strong commitment to enhance the quality of students
learning. Other senior leaders and teachers share the same commitment to the
continuous improvement agenda. The owner is highly supportive of the school.
He finances new initiatives and provides effective support and challenge for the
senior leadership. The principal has clear targets aligned to the successful
implementationoftheschooldevelopmentplan(SDP)goals.Thereisaneffective
andcoherentmanagementstructure.The4headsofsectionareresponsibleand
accountable for student and teacher outcomes in their grades. They operate
effectively and consistently as miniprincipals and provide valuable support for
teachers. They undertake regular lesson observations, sample students work,
analysedata,trainstaffandmeetwithparents.
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TheSDPisawellstructureddocumentthathaskeyperformanceindicators(KPIs)
that have clearly defined measures for success. It focusses well on the schools
perceived improvementsin each performancestandard,including allthosefrom
thepreviousinspectionreport.Theprincipalhasdesignedaneffectivemonitoring
process to track the successes achieved and the stages of progress in ongoing
initiatives.Theselfevaluationform(SEF)isnotaswellstructuredastheSDPand
gives a somewhat ambitious and aspirational reflection of the achievements of
the school. It provides little measurable evidence to demonstrate the progress
claimedacrosstheperformancestandardssincethepreviousinspection.
Theschoolrunswellonadailybasisandthereisasafe,calmandcaringculture
thatsupportslearning.Allseniorstaffundertakelessonobservations.Thepresent
process is insufficiently focused on students learning. The outcomes are not
consistently analysed to identify trends and measure the effectiveness of
improvementinitiatives.Theschoolisdatarichandusesiteffectivelytoidentify
struggling students in need of intervention. It does not rigorously monitor the
data at group, class, grade and subject levels to identify trends and areas of
concern.
There are effective communications with parents, who are positive about the
support and care provided for their children. Parents receive termly reports and
midtermprogressupdates.Theschoolregularlycollectstheviewsofparentsand
has an open door policy, which is appreciated by most parents. In the parent
survey conducted for this inspection, a minority of parents indicated that they
werenotkeptwellinformedabouttheirchildsprogress.

Progresssincethelastinspection
The school has improved significantly since the last inspection. Staff now have
ADECapprovalforthejobstheydo.Teachershaveembracedavarietyofdifferent
strategies that are having a positive impact on students engagement, interest
and challenge. Many teachers now use collaborative group tasks to challenge
studentstoshareideas,solveproblemsandpresenttheirfindings.Standardised
MAPtestshavebeenintroducedandplansareinplacetoextendthesetomost
areasoftheschool.Morefocusisstillrequired inensuringappropriatelevelsof
challengeandsupportareprovidedforthemoreableandSENstudents.
Theschool,andinparticulartheseniorleadershipteam,havedemonstratedgood
capacitytosecurefurtherimprovement.

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Whattheschoolshoulddotoimprovefurther:
1. Furtherimproveteachingandlearningsothatmostlessonsaregoodby:
i. having higher expectations, greater pace and more active student
engagementinalllearningactivities
ii. usingassessmentofstudentspriorknowledgeandskillstoprovide
more consistency in the planning of differentiated activities
matchedtotheiridentifiedneeds
iii. creatingmoreeffectivechallengeforhigherachievers
iv. providingmoreopportunitiesforstudentstodevelopandenhance
their21stCenturyskills.

2. Furtherimproveleadershipandmanagementby:
i. focussing lesson monitoring on students learning to drive
instructiontoahigherlevel
ii. strategically analysing the outcomes of focussed lesson
observations to identify trends and measure the effectiveness of
improvementinitiatives
iii. targeting professional development on identified areas from
observationaldata
iv. strategicallymonitoringstudentprogressatindividual,group,class,
gradeandsubjectlevelstoidentifytrendsandareasofconcern
v. expanding the use of standardised tests to monitor students
progressandtargetfurtheraccelerationofattainmentlevels.

3. Provide a library with a good range of English and Arabic books that will
alsoeffectivelyfacilitateindependentresearch.

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InspectionGrades

Satisfactory

Inneedofsignificant
improvement

Satisfactory

Good

VeryGood

Performance
Standard

Very
unsatisfactory

Highperforming

Unsatisfactory

BandC

Satisfactory&
Improving

BandB

Outstanding

BandA

Poor

Standard1:
Students
attainmentand
progress

Standard2:
Studentspersonal
development

Standard3:The
qualityofteaching
andlearning

Standard4:The
meetingof
studentsneeds
throughthe
curriculum

Standard5:The
protection,care,
guidanceand
supportofstudents

Standard6:The
qualityofthe
schoolsbuildings
andpremises

Standard7:The
schoolsresources
tosupportitsaims

Standard8:The
effectivenessof
leadershipand
management

Summary
Evaluation:The
schoolsoverall
effectiveness

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