As Proper Business Establishments, Dubai Private Schools Will Be Bonded to their Customers by Contracts

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KHDA DubaiParents and schools are set to benefit from a new legally binding initiative outlining their rights and responsibilities, Dubai’s Knowledge and Human Development Authority (KHDA) has revealed. The authority regulates the business of schooling and higher education in the emirate of Dubai. Designed to promote positive relationships and protect the rights of both private schools and families, the School Parent Contract will include refund and admission policies, school fees, attendance and punctuality, as well as health and safety provision and transportation. It will also address parental responsibilities such as providing schools with accurate medical, psychological and educational assessment records.

The first phase of the Parent School Contract, the signing of which will be mandatory for student registration, will be rolled out to six schools at the start of the 2013/14 academic year. Continuous evaluations determining the effectiveness of the contracts in reducing disputes between parents and schools will be undertaken during this time. Based on the outcome of the evaluations, the initiative will be expanded.

Dubai Modern Education School, Al Ittihad Private School -Al Mamzar, Al Ittihad Private School – Jumeriah, School of Modern Skills, Greenwood International School and American Academy in Al Mizhar will be the first to introduce the contracts, involving a total of 9632 students.

“Constructive relationships between schools and families are essential to ensuring excellence in education,” said Amal Bel Hasa, Chief of Compliance and Resolution Commission at KHDA. “A detailed list of terms and conditions will be beneficial to both schools and parents, enabling them to fully understand expectations and responsibilities.

“In addition to this contract, schools should have effective procedures to address and mitigate parental concerns and complaints. At the same time it’s important we recognise the vital role parents play as a resource in the educational experience of their children. We’d like to thank the schools for their participation.”

The terms of the contract were informed by best international practices customised to local conditions, as well as extensive consultations with schools and parents. The document contains procedures for resolving disputes, together with details of how schools and parents can appeal against decisions.

A graphic information sheet outlining the contract finalisation process is available on the KHDA website.

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