Dubai English Speaking School is one of many schools on Oud Metha Street Image Credit: Gulf News Archives

Being one of the largest and oldest residential hubs in the emirate, Bur Dubai offers an impressive educational landscape, whether it’s early years education, British, American, French or Indian curriculum, primary or secondary schools.

Compared to the newer parts of the city that are still undergoing development, the district promises an affordable lifestyle and stability. Additionally, because of its urban layout that features smaller roads and buildings and tight-knit communities, many children who live in Bur Dubai walk to school or live close by.

“The quality of education is generally consistent. In my dealings over there, the parents are happy with the consistency of education and of the school rates as well,” says Michael Bartlett, an independent education consultant who works with several schools in Bur Dubai. “You don’t see an increase in fees as often as you do in other places.”

Long-established schools

Many of the schools in Bur Dubai were founded a decade ago or more, which allowed them to build a long-standing reputation among the generations of families who have lived in the area. For example, New Academy School was established in 1990, while Dubai Gem Private School was founded in 1973. The Indian High School, which recently underwent a renovation, has been around since 1960.

“The longevity of those schools is greater than other areas of Dubai, meaning that families there are less transient. Children will have been in those schools for seven, eight or nine years. They are a little bit different than the typical expatriate-area schools such as Dubai Silicon Oasis and others,” says Bartlett.

Wide spectrum of choices

Bur Dubai residents can choose one of the many schools on Oud Metha Street, which include Gems Winchester (British curriculum), Dubai Gem Private School (British), Al Rashid Al Saleh Private School (UAE), Dubai English Speaking School (British), Lycee Francais International (French), St Mary’s Catholic High School (British), Pakistan Education Academy and Indian High School (CBSE).

The quiet neighbourhood of Al Mankhool also offers two great options. New Academy School follows the US curriculum alongside the UAE requirements in teaching Arabic and Islamic studies and has around 1,400 students, according to the Knowledge and Human Development Authority. Ambassador School adopts India’s CISCE curriculum and has around 842 students. Ambassador School’s commitment to supporting students of determination helped it to improve its rating this year from Good to Very Good. The school was also shortlisted recently as a finalist in the Gess Education Awards for Best Use of Steam Learning in the Classroom.

For younger children, nurseries such as British Orchard Nursery, Cambridgeshire Nursery, Hope Montessori, Little Diamond, and Chubby Cheeks Nursery provide an ideal environment to nurture and educate children during their early years.

For higher education, Bur Dubai offers easy access to two post-secondary institutions, both located within a 12-minute drive: Canadian University Dubai, situated just off Shaikh Zayed Road and close to Dubai Metro, and the American College of Dubai in Al Garhoud, one of the few universities in the UAE offering day and evening BBA programmes.