Dubai Private Schools Allowed Fee Increases Based on Performance in Latest Inspections

Importantly, schools that have experienced a decline in their inspection ratings will not be eligible to apply for any fee increases, underscoring the KHDA's commitment to incentivizing quality education provision

Dubai’s Knowledge and Human Development Authority (KHDA) has announced a new framework for fee adjustments for the upcoming academic year, 2024-25, in a move aimed at incentivizing educational excellence and maintaining competitiveness within the private school sector.

Under these guidelines, schools will be permitted to increase fees by up to 5.2 per cent, contingent upon their performance in the latest annual inspections conducted by the KHDA.

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The KHDA’s Education Cost Index (ECI) for the upcoming year has been set at 2.6 per cent, serving as a benchmark for fee adjustments.

However, schools that have demonstrated improvements in their inspection ratings stand to benefit even more. Those upgrading from a ‘Weak’ to ‘Acceptable’ or from ‘Acceptable’ to ‘Good’ will be eligible for fee increases of up to double the ECI, totalling 5.2 per cent.

Similarly, schools progressing from ‘Good’ to ‘Very Good’ or ‘Very Good’ to ‘Outstanding’ can expect fee hikes of up to 4.55 per cent and 3.9 per cent, respectively.

Importantly, schools that have experienced a decline in their inspection ratings will not be eligible to apply for any fee increases, underscoring the KHDA’s commitment to incentivizing quality education provision.

This announcement marks the second consecutive year that schools in Dubai have been permitted to adjust their fees, following a three-year freeze due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

In the 2023-24 academic year, educational institutions were allowed fee hikes of up to 6 per cent, reflecting a cautious approach to financial adjustments post-pandemic.

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Shamma AlMansouri, Director of Permits at KHDA, emphasized the significance of aligning fee adjustments with schools’ inspection ratings, stating that it underscores the quality of education while enhancing sector competitiveness.

AlMansouri highlighted the transparent nature of the fee adjustment process, which is based on an analysis of audited financial statements in collaboration with the Digital Dubai Authority.

This methodology ensures the interests of stakeholders are considered while promoting continuous improvement and sustainability within the private school sector.

Statistics reveal a positive trend in Dubai’s private education landscape, with over three-quarters of students enrolled in schools rated ‘Good’ or better during the previous academic year.

Furthermore, enrollment in Dubai’s private schools has seen a notable increase of 12 per cent since the last academic year, with more than 365,000 students attending 220 private schools offering 17 different curricula.

As the educational landscape continues to evolve, these measures by the KHDA reflect a commitment to fostering excellence and innovation within Dubai’s private school sector.

By linking fee adjustments to performance outcomes, the framework incentivizes schools to prioritize quality education provision, ultimately benefiting students and enhancing the overall educational landscape in Dubai.

 

This article was created using automation and was thoroughly edited and fact-checked by one of our editorial staff members

Tariq Saeed

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