The Abu Dhabi Education Council (ADEC) has approved fee increases for 24 private schools in Abu Dhabi starting the 2017/2018 academic school year. The average fee increase was three percent. Meanwhile, ADEC has rejected the request of 60 private schools to increase their fees; additionally 84 schools have submitted fee increase requests, 14 of which offered Asian curriculums, while 70 schools offered different curriculums.

ADEC indicated that all requests have been thoroughly studied and reviewed by the Private Schools and Quality Assurance (PSQA) sector to ensure full compliance with the applicable criteria and school improvement plans.

H.E. Eng. Hamad Al Dhaheri, PSQA’s Executive Director indicated that PSQA is keen to provide students with affordable and high quality education opportunities in par with best international practices and standards, as well as offering students a wide array of curriculums to choose to study. Additionally, ADEC has implemented a world-class and comprehensive inspection program called Irtiqa’a, which aims to measure the quality of education delivered by schools.

Currently, there are 34 percent of private school students that pay fees less than AED 10,000 annually, whereas 24 percent of the students pay fees between AED20, 000 to AED 30,000, and 12 percent of students pay fees between AED 30,000 to AED 50,000 and only six percent of students paid more than AED 50,000.

ADEC notified all private schools earlier on the deadline for submitting fee increase requests, submission mechanism and requirements, as incomplete submissions or requests that don’t meet ADEC’s criteria will not be considered.

ADEC also announced assessment criteria’s and requirements needed to be eligible to submit fee increase requests to the concerned committee. A circulation was sent by ADEC to schools emphasizing the importance of having the Principal’s signature on the requests to ensure completeness and accuracy, and that all requests meet requirements such as closing accounts of the last two fiscal years as per the criteria specified by ADEC in the PSQA policy manual.

ADEC reviewed all fee increase requests based on the applicable assessment matrix and the total points scored based on each standard.

 “ADEC identifies a number of sub-criteria under the main five criteria’s which focus more on school performance according to the Irtiqa’a report, and the school spending on teaching, technical and administrative staff including salaries, professional development, teacher retention rate, as well as the number of SEN students registered in the school and the number of national teaching and administrative staff,” said Eng. Al Dhaheri.

ADEC’s PSQA Executive Director explained that these criteria’s and control tools are enforced to balance between investors and parental rights.

ADEC continuously monitors tuition as well as other school fees and ensures schools refrain from imposing additional fees without obtaining ADEC’s approval.