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Jumeirah Baccalaureate School, JBS Dubai

Jumeirah Baccalaureate School, JBS Dubai


Jumeirah Baccalaureate School is a private K-12 international school which was established in September 2010. The school is located in the heart of Jumeriah 1, one of the best locations in the city, in the previous location of the American School of Dubai. The school is operated by the Taaleem group.

Although the building is approximately 40 years old, a lot of effort and investment has gone into bringing it back to life and providing a much lighter and more modern feel.  It now has its own organic garden that the KG children tend and supply vegetables to the on-site canteen.

The student body presently numbers 850, up from 629 last year, and over 600 students in total over the last year two years. One in five students come from the UAE and Emiratis represent the single largest demographic. The remainder represent a fairly even spread of Dubai’s population makeup, with students coming from over 70 different countries.

As the numbers show, the school has grown very rapidly. Many students are non-native English speakers – approximately 70% – with a large number coming from Eastern Europe and Asia. All students learn Arabic from KG1 and there are five Arabic language TA’s training specifically to work with ESL students.  In Grade 11 currently, there are 33 children speaking 30 different languages.

In total one-third of students have Arabic as their first language, and a significant one-third have also been identified as having Special Educational Needs requirements – high by UAE standards. The definition of what is considered SEN will be important here.

The school says it is strongly committed to supporting children with Additional Learning requirements and SEN provided they can access the curriculum. The Head of Inclusion, Ayesha Kamal, is responsible for training staff across the school – this support is not treated as an “add-on”, but integrated into everyday teaching.


As of 2013-2014 the school received the Knowledge and Human Development Authority inspection rating of Good – a rating it has held since the school opened. It is an achievement to have made the KHDA’s second highest ranking in its first year, and clearly the school has no intention of allowing any slip. In its first year the school had only 80 children, so standards have been maintained during quite rapid growth. Again, few schools have managed this.

The school follows a varied curriculum ‘designed’ very much for international students. Kindergarten follows the English Early Years Foundation Stage (EYFS). Pre KG and KG 1 are taught with English as the primary language but students also receive regular Arabic lessons as well as exposure to Arabic culture, games, music and language.

In the primary phase students follow the National Curriculum of England and Wales for English and Mathematics, plus the International Primary Curriculum for other subjects. The International Primary Curriculum (IPC) places an emphasis on “international mindedness”, but is “enriched to reflect the rich culture of Dubai and the UAE”.

The middle phase students follows the International Baccalaureate Middle Years Programme (MYP). The MYP (initiated in 2011) focuses on eight particular subject groups: Technology, physical education, arts, mathematics, sciences, humanities and a minimum of two languages. Along with English and Arabic students are also able to undertake French and German as their secondary languages starting from primary school.

Older students worked towards the International Baccalaureate Diploma (DP), and, interestingly the more vocational BTEC.

The school has made a particular effort to pick out the best practices from the UK curriculum and transfer them to the IPC and MYP – particularly in regard to tracking of student achievement and subject content, as well as following the “connectivity” requirements of the IB programme.

The school has also been integrating the IBCC in September and is in discussion with an Australian-based local university that would provide a Tertiary Foundation course, together with the 3 core units from the IB Diploma.

Assessments are validated externally by International Schools’ Assessment.

The school is too new to have progressed students all the way through to the Diploma, so an independent assessment of how the school compares against other IB schools in the UAE is not yet possible. The school’s KHDA report does however note good progress in key subjects. For the core subjects of English, maths and science Jumeirah Baccalaureate School is rated Good across all the phases of the school. It is rated Acceptable for Islamic Education and for Arabic.

Did you know that JBS has its own information app? If you’re a parent of the school it may be downloaded onto your desktop or mobile. More info here. 

Key strengths of the school are the outstanding attitudes and behaviour of students; high quality of support, including for students with special needs; active engagement of the parents and the community; and the school’s vision and strategic drive for continuous improvement.

Areas for improvement include the need to develop students’ enquiry and critical thinking skills and to “review the curriculum by extending its breadth and balance to include a global dimension to reflect the needs of different nationalities in the school”. Both of these inspection observations are somewhat of a surprise for an IB based school which has an international curriculum almost by definition, and which is known for developing critical reasoning, as well as self management skills.

Facilities at the school are very good, and include a multi-purpose auditorium/gym, indoor sports hall, KG indoor playroom, 25 metre shaded swimming pool, two roof top tennis courts, grass sports pitches, track and field with changing facilities, extensive two-storey library/media centre, playgrounds, ICT labs, science labs, art studios, dance studios, music studios, rehearsal rooms and cafeteria.

Fees range from between 51,305 AED per year for KG students. There is a flat rate of 66,697 AED for students from Grades 1 through to 10. Years 11 and 12 pay 76,958 AED. Fees are paid in two installments. There is an additional 5,000 AED initial registration fee. Applying to the school will cost you 1,000 AED. The fees noted above are for tuition only. Additional activities, and external examinations, are subject to additional fees.

Note JBS offers a debenture scheme through Taaleem for corporates who want to guarantee places at the school for their employees. It costs 100,000 AED and depreciates over 15 years to 10 AED, but guarantees a place at the school. Naturally, over time, this will make entry into the school more difficult for those working for companies with no debenture system in place.


The buzz

There is a huge amount of chatter about how expensive the school is, particularly for KG, where the 50,000 AED price tag makes JBS one of the most expensive pre-schools in the UAE. By Year 12, fees are premium, but not out of the ordinary for a top tier IB school.

Parents of children at the school are largely positive about the school, its atmosphere, and the quality of care and teaching on offer. However, the WSA Survey shows continued concern over academic performance, discipline and feedback.



Grade/Year Annual fee (AED)
Pre-Primary 51305.00
KG1 51305.00
KG2 51305.00
1 66697.00
2 66697.00
3 66697.00
4 66697.00
5 66697.00
6 66697.00
7 66697.00
8 66697.00
9 66697.00
10 66697.00
11 76958.00
12 76958.00


KHDA Rating

Academic year Overall performance Report
2013-2014 Good
2012-2013 Good
2011-2012 Good




If you are the owner of the school and note any factual inaccuracies, or would like to update any information, please do not hesitate to contact us at editor@edu2021.com.


Update on June 26, 2015 | Reviewed by David on October 1, 2012

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