Q+A: Elite Private School, Abu Dhabi
Elite Private School, a co-educational day school in Abu Dhabi, answers our questions and takes us on a guided tour...
What happens when parents visit the school?
Parents are asked to make an appointment if they would like to visit Elite Private School. Upon arrival, they will sign in with security, and will be greeted at reception. We will then answer any questions they may have, and take them on a tour of the facilities.
What do you do to help children settle in?
We have different programs depending on the age of the child. We have delayed starts and parent days for the little ones. The older students receive a gradual orientation, where we cover guidelines and expectations.
How old is the school?
The school was founded in 1992. The new building was constructed in 2015 and includes classrooms, an auditorium and sports halls.
How many students do you have?
Currently, we have approximately 1000 students in grades K–12.
What accreditations do you have?
We are licensed by the Abu Dhabi Education Council and the Ministry of Education. As the High School is a new school, Elite Private School is currently a candidate for accreditation with NCA CASI (The North Central Association Commission on Accreditation and School Improvement) and SACS CASI (The Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Council on Accreditation and School Improvement).
What assessments are required to enroll?
This depends on the former school of the candidate. Students entering KG–Grade 3 will attend an interview, and answer some basic content questions. Students in Grades 4–10 will sit for standardized exams in Math, Science and English. Parents of any other students must inquire at the school, as Abu Dhabi Education Council policies dictate the transfer rules. Students who have completed Year 10 at a British Curriculum school will enter Grade 10 at our school.
What curriculum do you follow?
We follow the American Common Core Curriculum as instituted in the State of California.
What facilities do you offer? E.g. sports, music, arts?
We have an Olympic-size swimming pool, two multi-use outdoor courts, a three-quarter size football pitch and an indoor multi-use, multi-sport gymnasium.
Why should I send my child to your school?
Elite Private School is a family. We provide a safe learning environment where our teachers care for their students first and foremost.
Can you give me a breakdown of where your students come from? (nationality)
70% of our students are from the UAE. The remaining students come from 35 other countries.
What is your teaching philosophy?
We provide our students with a challenging, well-rounded education that includes the arts, humanities, mathematics, the sciences and technology.
We promote effective learning, discovery of knowledge, fostering a strong sense of responsibility, competency, efficiency and professional conduct. We aim to provide a student-centered teaching ethos, where the teachers and students take creative and innovative approaches to learning.
How have your pupils performed in examinations in recent years?
Our pupils perform very well in Ministry of Education examinations, with a 100% pass rate.
"We aim to provide a student-centered teaching ethos, where the teachers and students take creative and innovative approaches to learning."
What is the background of your teaching staff?
Our teaching staff members come from 11 different countries.
How do you teach reading?
This depends on the grade level and reading level. We have created a reading-support class for students in primary and middle years.
Do you offer a wide range of field trips?
Yes, we offer field trips for all ages. We also offer an international trip for Grades 11–12.
Do you have a rewards system to encourage good work?
Yes, teachers have classroom-specific systems for encouraging good work and good behavior.
Do you do much work in the community?
One of our neighbors is a special-needs organization, and we have a Volunteers Club that spends time there, as well as with the Khalifa Fund, which is the largest charity organization in Abu Dhabi.
How do you support pupils who are struggling, and how do you challenge the more able?
Struggling students are referred to our Student Support Services, where strategies are implemented to provide the necessary support and to help the students achieve their best. For the more able students, we have special-interest clubs, contests and the Innovation Lab.
What additional help do you provide for children with learning difficulties?
We have partnerships with local family-support clinics and services. Our on-site testing can accurately suggest whether the difficulty can be handled with learning strategies in school, or if more specialist help is necessary.
How can parents get involved?
Parents are encouraged to join the Parents Council, and to get involved with classroom teachers, subject teachers and take part in special activities’ days. In grades K–6, we do have some parents who help with reading in the classrooms.
How often are parents invited to attend assemblies?
We have morning assembly and a Quran reading everyday, and parents are welcome to join us. Parents are also invited to any special assemblies, celebrations and festival days.
How often do parents receive written reports?
We are now entirely digital. Parents have access to an online portal where they can check attendance, grades, lesson plans, homework and email the teachers. In addition, they can register and pay tuition through the online portal. We offer training for parents in the use of the online portal.
What opportunities exist for parents to speak to their child's teachers should they have any worries or concerns?
Parents may use ClassDojo, Whatsapp, the online portal or external email to contact teachers. There is a formal parent meeting each term, and we also routinely set appointments with parents to discuss their child’s progress.
What sporting and extra-curricular activities do you offer?
The students take part in intramural-sports contests, and a few are selected to participate in inter-school competitions. In addition, we have a junior police guard, a civil defense team and extra-curricular clubs.
We have an Olympic-size pool for use during the day, and we also hold a sports academy during after-school hours that teaches eight different sports and martial arts.
"...we hold a sports academy during after-school hours that teaches eight different sports and martial arts."
How do most children travel to and from school?
Most of our students use our bus service.
Do you have a cafeteria?
Yes, we have a full cafeteria with hot food or snacks. Students may pay cash or buy vouchers. The food is licensed by the Abu Dhabi Education Council and the Abu Dhabi Food Authority.
Do most children bring in packed lunches or eat from the cafeteria?
About 65% of our students eat from the cafeteria. We offer two 20-minute breaks during the school day, when most students eat either a sandwich wrap, rice with chicken or snacks. Any special dietary requirements must be registered with the school nurse.
All images: Elite Private School.
Please go to this link to view the Winter's profile for Elite Private School.