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NewSchoolInspectionReport

MiddleEastPrivateSchool

AcademicYear20142015

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MiddleEastPrivateSchool

InspectionDate
SchoolID#

1114May2015
206

LicensedCurriculum

MinistryofEducation

NumberofStudents

532

AgeRange
Gender
Principal
SchoolAddress

3to16years
Mixed
SamirHabboush
Street28,BaniYas,AbuDhabi

TelephoneNumber

+971(0)25827005

FaxNumber

+971(0)25822479

OfficialEmail(ADEC)

Middleeast.pvt@adec.ac.ae

SchoolWebsite

Dateofopening

September2014

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Theoveralleffectivenessoftheschool
Inspectorsconsideredtheschoolinrelationto3performancecategories
BandA Highperforming(overalleffectivenessgrade1,2or3)
BandB

Satisfactory(overalleffectivenessgrade4or5)

BandC

Inneedofsignificantimprovement(overalleffectivenessgrade6,70r8)

TheSchoolwasjudgedtobe:BANDC;GRADE6

Themainstrengthsoftheschoolare:

the positive relationships between students and staff and the mutual
respectshownarereflectedbysatisfactorystandardsofbehaviour
theemphasisgiventothedevelopmentofUAEvaluesandheritage
satisfactoryacademicachievementinIslamiceducation
proceduresandsystemsareeffectivelyensurethesafetyof,andsupport
for,students
parental satisfaction for the support given to their childs personal
development.

Themainareasforimprovementare:

academicachievementinmostcoresubjects,particularlyEnglish
curriculumdeliveryandoutcomesintheKindergarten
thedevelopmentof21stcenturyskills
levelsofexpectationsofstudentperformanceinbothqualityandquantity
oftheirwork
the assessment systems for tracking students progress of skills and
competencies
provision of resources in specialist areas such as information and
communicationtechnology(ICT),science,libraryandtheKindergarten
constitutionofagoverningbody.

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Introduction
A team of 4 inspectors evaluated the school. They observed 65 lessons,
conducted several meetings with senior staff, subject coordinators, students,
parents and the representative of the owner. They scrutinized students work
across the school, analysed 157 responses to the parents questionnaire and
consideredmanyoftheschool'spoliciesandotherdocuments.Theprincipaland
otherseniorstaffwereinvolvedthroughouttheprocessand tookpartin5joint
lessonobservationswithinspectors.

DescriptionoftheSchool
The school, located in the Bani Yas region of Abu Dhabi, opened in September
2014. Its aims are to provide students with a personalized education with the
skills and qualities necessary for lifelong learning so as to prepare them to
becomesuccessfulglobalcitizens,readytoembarkonthechallengesofthe21st
century.
Thereare532studentsonroll;56%areboys,allareMuslim,ofArabicheritage.Of
thelargestgroupsrepresentedattheschool,26%areSyrian,18%areYemeni,16%
are Sudanese, 9% are Jordanian, 8% each are Somalian and Egyptians and 6% are
Emirati nationals. The school has recognized 7 students as having special
educational needs (SEN); their specific needs have not been identified nor have
thoseofgiftedandtalentedstudents.Theschoolstatesthatahighproportionof
students(over70%)havedifficultywiththeEnglishlanguage.
TheschoolfollowstheMinistryofeducation(MoE)curriculuminallbutEnglish,
where a British scheme called Way Ahead is used. The school does not use
standardisedentranceexaminations.
Thesenior leadershipteam consistsof theprincipal and viceprincipal.There are
37 teachers; most have ADEC teaching license recognition, 4 have teaching
assistant approval. Staff turnover is low; the acquisition of additional staff is
constrained by financial considerations. Annual student fees are in the low to
mediumrangefromAED9,500toAED12,500.

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TheEffectivenessoftheSchool
The overall effectiveness of the Middle East Private school is unsatisfactory.
Attainment in most subjects is below international expectations, with the
exception of Islamic education where it is in line. Children enter the school with
verylowcompetenceinEnglish,lowconfidenceinArabicandweaknumberskills.
Studentsdonotmakesufficientprogressduringtheirtimeinschool.Thisismainly
because neither the curriculum nor lessons are sufficiently adapted to their
individualneed.
Positive relationships exist between teachers and students, which helps to
promote their personal development. Students enjoy being at school, which is
reflected in their average attendance rates. The school shows a strong
commitment to the care and protection of students. Behaviour is satisfactory.
Teaching is unsatisfactory because the lessons lack sufficient variety to sustain
learning. The provision of resources for the curriculum and the support for
studentslearningareveryunsatisfactory.
Students show respect for the values and heritage of the UAE and contribute
appropriately to assemblies and the singing of the national anthem. Parents are
appreciativeofthesupporttheirchildrenreceiveatschool.Staffworkhardand
morale is positive. Regular professional development supports staff in their
effortstoimprove;theimpactofthistrainingisvariable.Leadershipoftheschool
requiressupporttoadequatelytacklethenecessaryimprovements.
Studentsattainment&progress
Theattainmentandprogressofstudentsinallgradesisunsatisfactory.Standards
are below curriculum and international expectations apart from those in Islamic
education,whicharesatisfactory.CompetenciesinEnglishthroughouttheschool
areverylow.Theattainmentandprogressofstudentsinothercurriculumareas
suchasartandphysicaleducationareunsatisfactory.Thisisprimarilyduetoalack
ofresourcestosupporttheseareas.
OnentrytotheKindergarten(KG),children'scommunicationskillsinArabicand
Englishare below agerelated expectations.They are givenfewopportunities to
actively develop either their Arabic or English speaking and listening skills.
Children rarely independently explore, investigate or make choices in their
learning activities. In consequence, achievement in KG is well below age related
expectationsinallareasoflearning.
The development of writing, comprehension and reading skills in Arabic is
unsatisfactory. Students are not given time to practise their writing through
extended pieces of work. Standard Arabic is not used in class and few
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opportunities are offered for choral reading practice. Progress in Islamic


education is satisfactory. Students are able to read verses from the Holy Quran
with the correct Tajweed. They understand and correctly apply the procedures
for performing daily prayers. Attainment in social studies is below curriculum
expectations.Moststudentsareunabletocontextualizewhattheyhavelearned
totheirownlives.Thisistheresultoftoofewindependentlearningopportunities
throughdiscussionandpresentationoftheirownideas.
TheacquisitionofEnglishlanguagecompetencepresentsachallengethroughout
the school. Significant numbers of students make minimal progress. In most
lessons,studentspassivelylistenandarenotactiveenoughinaskingquestionsto
clarifytheirunderstanding.Intheearliergrades,drillingexercisesrelatetosingle
wordsanddonotpromoteunderstanding.StudentslackofconfidenceinEnglish
is reflected in their reticence to answer simple questions. The absence of an
establishedbasicvocabularyimpedesprogressinreadingandwriting.Eveninthe
highergradeswheretheyareabletowritesimplesentencestheirresponsesshow
anabsenceofcreativityandindependence.
Attainment and progress are unsatisfactory in mathematics; it is very
unsatisfactoryintheKG.Competenceinworkingwithmathematicaloperationsis
highlyvariablebecauseofstudentsinabilitytorecallbasicnumberfacts.Thereis
anoverrelianceontheuseofcalculators.Mathematicalskillsaremoreeffectively
establishedinGrade7thaninothergrades.Ingeneral,studentslacktheskillsto
applytheirknowledgeorsolveproblems.Fewopportunitiesareprovidedforthe
investigation of concepts so students are unable to explain their thinking.
Standardsinsciencearewellbelowexpectations.Theabsenceofenquirybased
learning and experimental investigation does not consolidate the basic factual
knowledge they gain. In Grade 2 lessons, students were able to recognize a
phenomena suchasmagnetism,butwereunableto explainitusing appropriate
scientificterminology.
21st century skills such as working independently, using information and
communication technology (ICT) to support enquiry are inadequately developed
as there are too few opportunities to develop these skills. The attainment and
progress of students who find learning difficult and those who are more able is
very unsatisfactory. Assessment procedures are not robust enough to clearly
identifytheirneedsandprovideappropriatesupport.
Studentspersonaldevelopment
The personal development of students is satisfactory. Relationships between
students and adults are respectful and supportive. Most students show
willingnesstolearn.Theycanbecomequicklydemotivatediftheirinterestisnot
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captured.Classroombehaviourisusuallysatisfactory;studentsfollowinstructions
and engage in activities. Outside lessons, students are polite and compliantly
follow established routines. They are positive about the help and support they
receive from staff and say that behaviour is well managed and there are few
incidentsofbullying.
Manystudentslackconfidence,particularlyintheirabilitytoexpressthemselves
in English. Some opportunities for improving confidence and developing
leadershipskillsarepromotedthroughthestudentcouncilandleadingassembly
activities. Students perform these duties effectively and with enthusiasm. The
UAEheritageisacknowledgedduringthedailyassemblieswherestudentsstand
toattentionandsingenthusiastically.
Thestudentattendancerateisaverageat91%andpunctualityissatisfactory.The
schoolnursetakesanactiveroleinpromotingtheimportanceofleadingahealthy
lifestyle.Studentsunderstandthesignificanceofthisbuttheirfoodpurchasesdo
notalwaysreflectthisunderstanding.Theschoolmakesappropriateprovisionin
thetimetableforanactivitiesprogramme.Thisprovidesreasonableopportunities
forstudentstoshareandworktogetheronspecificprojects.
Thequalityofteachingandlearning
Thequalityofteachingandlearningisunsatisfactory.Inspectorsobservedlessons
ranging fromsatisfactorytopoor;onlya fewlessonsweredeemedsatisfactory.
The more effective lessons were mainly in Islamic education and mathematics.
Most teachers have satisfactory subject knowledge; in some subjects, it is more
tenuous for example, in English and science. Not all language teachers model
English to a high enough standard. Teachers are committed to improving their
lessons;theirfocusisonpresentingknowledgeandfactsratherthandeveloping
learning skills. In most lessons, there are positive relationships and adequate
behaviourmanagementensuresthatlearningisnotinterrupted.
In the KG, teachers do not have a secure knowledge of the way in which young
childrenlearn.Baselineassessmentsarenotusedtoestablishthestartingpoints
or to inform planning for the learning needs of individual children. Activities do
not always match the childrens needs or provide meaningful tasks to support
theirprogress.Forexample,rotelearninganddrillsarepredominatelyusedinall
subjects.
In many lessons, teachers do not have strategies for checking understanding
duringthecourseofthelesson.Assessmentisnotusedtoplansystematicallyfor
thedifferentneedsofstudents.Inmanylessons,studentsarepresentedwiththe
same worksheet but the content is often inappropriately matched to their
individual needs. Students struggle to understand and in consequence lose
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confidence.Insomeclasses,suchasArabicandscience,assessmentisusedmore
effectivelytoplanforlearningoutcomes.
Teachersrelyupontherepetitionoffactsasanindicatoroflearning.Questioning
techniques predominantly require single word answers; this approach limits
studentsabilitytothinkindependentlyorexplaintheirideas,whichareessential
21st century skills. Teachers display learning objectives that are often statements
offactualcontentratherthanmeasurableoutcomes.Thelearningobjectivesare
rarelyreferredtoattheendoflessonsinordertocheckontheprogressmade.
Somecollaborativelearningisbeingattemptedthroughgroups;thetasksarenot
always appropriate because of a lack of differentiation. This results in students
oftencopyingeachother'sanswers.Thelimitationinclassroomresourcesresults
in an overreliance on workbooks as the main medium for learning experiences.
There are few opportunities for investigative learning or problem solving,
especiallyinscienceandmathematics.
Meetingstudentsneedsthroughthecurriculum
Theimplementationofthecurriculumisunsatisfactorybecauseitdoesnotmeet
the needs of all students or prepare them adequately for their futures. Subject
orientated textbooks are used in most classes; these provide continuity but an
overreliance on them inhibits creativity in adapting the curriculum to meet
studentsneeds.ThereisnocrosscurricularworkusingICTandopportunitiesfor
studentstodevelopICTskillsarelimited.Transitionsbetweeneachphaseofthe
curriculum are not well planned for or linked clearly enough to curriculum
standards.TheKGcurriculumdoesnotcoherentlypromotechildrenslearning.
In general there are insufficient adaptations in the delivery of the curriculum to
meet the needs of those who are less able or who are gifted and talented.
Insufficient account is taken in curriculum planning of the difficulties students
have in comprehending English. The language used in worksheets, which are
designed to promote group activities, is not appropriately geared to meet the
rangeofabilityinmostclasses.
EffectiveplanninginIslamiceducationpromotessatisfactoryprogress.Inbroader
terms the curriculum develops a satisfactory understanding of UAE family and
cultural values. In Grade 5 classes, there are appropriate references to the UAE
flagandassembliesalsoeffectivelypromoteculturalvalues.
Theprotection,care,guidanceandsupportofstudents
The care, protection, guidance and support of students are satisfactory. The
school has a caring environment and students say they feel safe. There is an
effective behaviour policy and infringements are rare. An appropriate child
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protectionpolicyisinplace,staffhavebeentrainedandareawareofprocedures
to follow in cases of concern. The school social worker is actively involved in
promoting effective behaviour management procedures. Little information is
provided to inform students and their parents about transition arrangements to
the next stage of their education. Procedures for care and support do not
effectivelyaddresstheneedsofstudentswithSEN.
Facilities that provide support and care in the school are appropriately
maintained. There are suitable prayer facilities. A recently appointed nurse
ensuresthe cliniciscleanandwellorganized.Medicationisstoredappropriately
and the accompanying documentation is in place. All students have their own
medicalfiles.
The school site is secure. Procedures for the recruitment of staff follow
establishedguidelinesandthenecessarychecksarerecorded.Theserecordsare
heldcentrallyandupdated.
Thequalityoftheschoolsbuildingsandpremises
The overall quality of the buildings and premises is unsatisfactory. Although the
plotsizeisadequate,thebuildingsareinadequatelymaintainedandthestandard
ofdecorationisunsatisfactory.Mostclassroomsarelargeenoughforthenumber
ofstudentsbutfurnitureisoldandinpoorcondition.Airconditioningisnoisyand
becomesintrusivetolearning.TheoutsideplayareaforKGisnotfitforpurpose.
Ingeneral,thereareinsufficientopportunitiesforthepromotionofroleplayand
investigationinthisarea.
An extensive closedcircuit television (CCTV) system provides effective security.
Canopiedareasprovidesuitablespacesduringassemblyandbreaktime.Hygiene
andhealthissuesareadequatelyaddressedbyregularchecksoncleanliness.The
quality of specialist facilities is poor. The science laboratories are small, 1 is
inappropriatelyusedforstorage.Thelibraryisalsosmallanddoesnotprovidea
conducivelearningenvironmentforindependentstudy.Theprovisionforphysical
educationisunsatisfactory.Thegymnasium,whichisonlyusedbygirls,isinpoor
conditionandisnotfitforthedevelopmentofphysicaleducationskills.Thereare
nooutdoorspacesfortheboysPEsotheschoolisunabletoprovideasuitable
curriculumforthissubject.Aprayerroomhasbeenappropriatelyprovided.
Theschoolsresourcestosupportitsaims
The school's resources are very unsatisfactory. Some staff are not appropriately
qualified for the classes they teach. Teachers in the KG have ADEC approval as
teaching assistants but do not have fully qualified status. Staff shortages exist
amongst specialist support staff, for example the school does not have the
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requisitenumberofsocialworkers.Classroomsdonothaveanadequatestockof
relevant resources to promote active and independent learning. This situation is
particularly evident in the KG where children have few opportunities for
independentroleplayorrelevantmaterialstolearnbasicskills.Classroomsdonot
haveaccesstoteachingtechnology,which would generateinterestandactasa
stimulusforlearning.
Studentsarenotgiventheopportunitytodevelop21stcenturyskillsasaresultof
inadequaciesinthelibraryandprovisionforICT.Studentshaveoccasionalaccess
toanICTsuite;thecomputersystemsareoutdatedandsomearenotfunctioning.
The library is inadequate; it does not have the range and quality of books to
supportresearchactivities.Scienceresourcesarebasicandlimited.Studentshave
fewopportunitiesforinvestigativework.
Appropriatecontractualarrangementsareinplacetomaintainbusesinasafeand
reliable condition. Food storage is clean and hygienic; it meets certificate
requirements.
Theeffectivenessofleadershipandmanagement
Leadership and management are unsatisfactory. This is primarily because the
schooldoesnothaveinplacerigorousandrobustsystemstoassessthequalityof
education.Thereisnogoverningbodytoformallyholdseniorleaderstoaccount
orprovideactivesupportandguidance.Arepresentativeoftheownersupervises
thebudgetandthecurrentinvestmentinfacilitiesandresources.Oversightofthe
schoolsperformanceisconductedonaninformalbasisthroughatermlyvisitto
the school. This generates a brief report from the principal. There is no formal
reporting system in place to systematically provide evidence of progress in
tacklingareasofweakness.
Systems are not robust enough to provide a clear picture of the schools
effectiveness.Proceduresfortrackingtheprogressbeingmadeintheacquisition
of skills and competencies in different subject areas are not rigorous. Senior
leadersandmiddlemanagementareunabletoclearlyidentifytheprogressbeing
made by individual students. The attainment data is comprehensive but not
standardized so the school is unable to make informed decisions about its
performance relative to comparable institutions or international standards. The
lack of clarity in this benchmarking process is reflected in the inaccurate
evaluation ofthe schoolsoutcomes inrelationtotheperformance standards in
the selfevaluation document (SEF). The priorities identified in the school
developmentplan (SDP)appropriatelyidentify timeframes, staffaccountabilities
and budget allocations. There is little evidence of interim evaluations to show
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howactionplansareprogressing.Inconsequence,thereisnoindicationofhow
prioritieshavebeenrealignedtosupportthestrategicdirectionoftheschool.
A system of performance management is in place, primarily completed by the
principal. The lesson observations that form an integral part of this are not fully
focusedontheeffectivenessofstudentlearning.Thereislimitedevidenceofhow
targets set for teachers development have been successfully implemented. A
programme of professional development is being appropriately implemented to
help teachers improve their skills in delivering the curriculum. Subject
coordinators have insufficient experience and time to be effectively involved in
thisprocess.
Parentsareappreciativeoftheopennesspromotedbytheschool.Thelinkstend
to be on the basis of the individual needs of parents in addressing concerns or
providing information. They say their suggestions and opinions are taken
seriously.

Capacityforfurtherdevelopment
Theabsenceofrobustsystemstoeffectivelycollaterelevantinformationsuchas
thetrackingofprogressorstudentmobilityresultsininadequateinformationto
make informed decisionmaking. Insufficient resources have been allocated to
developtheexpertiseofcurriculumcoordinators.Theyhaveinsufficienttimeand
expertise to perform an appropriate monitoring role. The absence of sufficient
depthinmanagementexpertiseresultsintheprincipalbeingtheprimarysource
forthestrategicdirectionoftheschool.Theroleofgovernancelacksclarityand
impact.
The school has not demonstrated that it has the capacity to improve without
significantexternalsupportandmonitoring.

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Whattheschoolshoulddotoimprovefurther:
1.Improveleadershipandmanagementby:
i.
institutingagoverningbodytoprovidestrategicdirectionandhold
seniorleaderstoaccountforthequalityofeducation.
ii.
provide the time, training and resource for coordinators to
effectively monitor and evaluate the quality of education in their
subjectareas.
iii.
developing more robust systems to evaluate the outcomes of the
school.
iv.
engagingexternalsupporttofacilitateteambuildingandstrategies
forpromotingchange.
2.Improvestandardsofattainmentandprogressinthecoresubjectsby:
i.
ii.
iii.

introducing standardised assessments to benchmark student


attainmentaccuratelyagainstinternationalexpectations.
focus on the tracking of progress for a more robust identification of
competencies.
useassessmentdatatoplanfortheneedsofdifferentgroupsstudents.

3.Ensuregreaterconsistencyinthequalityofteachingby:
i.
ii.
iii.

using a wider range of teaching strategies to motivate and engage


students.
planning activities and structuring materials so to address the low
competenciesofstudentsinArabicandEnglish.
providingprofessionaldevelopmentwhichfocusesuponhowstudents
learn.

4.Improvethequalityandrangeofresourcessotosupportlearningby:
i. enhancing technology available in classrooms and acquiring more
moderncomputersystems.
ii. providingresourcestoenableinvestigativeenquiry.
iii. providingawiderrangeofbooksinthelibrarytopromoteindependent
learning.
iv. enhancingtheoutdoorprovisionfortheKG.

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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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