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First Chinese school planned for Dubai

Dubai’s first Chinese international school will open in around two years’ time, it has been announced, as new government statistics show the Emirate’s private schools sector continues to boom. Eleven new private schools have opened in Dubai this year and last year and annual fee revenue has reached 5.35bn AED (US$252m).

26 new private schools have opened in Dubai in the last three years, KHDA figures show.

"You can see how many international schools are here and doing really well, and that’s the result within a few years"

The project was announced during New Year celebrations at Dubai’s Chinese Learning Centre and has attracted investors both in China and in the UAE.

“Our parents are saying that learning Chinese is the weapon for the future of their children”

Investments are expected to reach some 120m AED (US$32.7m).

It will teach a curriculum in Mandarin to students, answering growing demand for the language in Dubai, according to Lucy Chuang, founder and director of the CLC and responsible for the Chinese International School project.

“There is a big potential,” Chuang told The PIE News. “Our parents are just straight-forward in saying that learning Chinese is the weapon for the future of their children.”

The Chinese Learning Centre has been teaching Mandarin in Dubai for eight years, and will continue to run after-school activities after the Chinese International School has opened to support students’ language study.

“Of course quite a few students, especially for the foreign students, need extra hours to master the language,” Chuang commented.

“And also during the weekend, if they would like to have more hours to learn Chinese. So that’s why the CLC will still stay.”

Dubai’s private schools sector is showing massive expansion, with 26 new schools opening in the last three years, according to new statistics published by Dubai’s Knowledge and Human Development Authority.

Screen Shot 2015-03-19 at 19.55.41And there has been almost 5% growth in enrolment in private schools since 2013-14, bringing the number of students studying in the city’s private institutions to over 255,000, KHDA’s infographic report shows.

A third of the students enrolled follow the British curriculum and a further third follow an Indian course, but as the sector grows more countries are expanding to this rapidly growing city.

“I think Dubai is a hub in this region,” said Chuang. “It’s developing so fast. You can see how many international schools are here and doing really well, and that’s the result within a few years. So that’s moving very fast.”

The KDHA is very positive about the future of the sector in Dubai.

“We are guided by the themes of Expo 2020, by the Dubai Plan 2021 and by the UAE Vision 2021,” a spokesperson for the KDHA told The PIE News. “These all include the importance of happiness and wellbeing – topics we take seriously.”

“Our future plans will look at how we can best give what we know and what we do to our stakeholders – students, parents, teachers, schools, universities, and investors,” she continued. “We are working to make sure that experience of education in Dubai is a happy one for the whole community.”

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