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Now a school with farms, food lab, health biodome

Region’s first sustainable school comes to Dubai, admissions open soon

  • Purpose-built. The campus of the Fairgreen International School will be powered by renewable energyImage Credit: Supplied
  • Tammam Abushakra, adviser to the chairman at Esol EducationImage Credit: Supplied
XPRESS

Dubai: Tech-enabled classrooms, food production labs, bio-dome for health and wellness, urban and vertical farming facilities, a recycling complex and innovation centre are among the long list of facilities taking shape at Fairgreen International School, the region’s first sustainability-focused school, set to open in Dubai shortly.

Tammam Abushakra, adviser to the chairman at Esol Education, the group that runs the school, said admissions for the inaugural September 2018 term at the Sustainable City-based school will begin later this month.

He said, “Fairgreen International School will offer the International Baccalaureate (IB) Continuum, where learning is through an inter-disciplinary approach that places considerable emphasis on students connecting their learning to big ideas in domains such as environmental, community and economic sustainability.”

He said the school will initially take students from Pre-KG to Grade 9 and eventually have classes till Grade 12. “The annual fees will range from Dh50,000 to Dh88,000 and founding families can enjoy savings in the initial years.”

Unique features

Elaborating on the unique sustainable features of the school, Abushakra said the campus is 100 per cent powered by renewable energy sources. “The school has a purpose-built campus that utilises solar power for all of its energy needs, recycles all of its water for agricultural use and implements waste separation and wind energy generation.” He said, “Students will have access to some of the world’s prominent places of technological advances and innovation, and sustainability-related research, besides vocational, professional and technological opportunities as the basis for studying the IB curriculum.”

Innovative programmes

He noted that the school’s Health, Wellness and Learning Centre, located in a dedicated biodome, will be led by Stephen Ritz of the US and modelled along the lines of his innovative programmes he had established in one of New York City’s disadvantaged communities. “The centre will engage Fairgreen’s students in project-based learning through urban farming, vertical farming and other endeavours that promote health, wellness, and sustainability.”

Abushakra said key concepts that will be integrated into the Fairgreen curriculum include city planning, land use decisions and economic opportunity, sustainable design and decision-making, green initiatives such as green roof maintenance and installation, urban environment restoration, environmental awareness and urban farming.

The school will also have a state-of-the-art library and learning hub, art and music labs, an athletics complex with a swimming pool, indoor multipurpose gym/auditorium, outdoor soccer field, courts and playgrounds, a shared bike path, jogging route and equestrian centre.

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