Well, my kids obviously go to a private school here in Al Ain. Are they happy with it? Yes, they are – because their friends go there. Am I happy with it? Sometimes. I think if half the teachers weren’t my friends, and I didn’t know all the behind the scenes upper management crap that goes on, I would be much more happy.
Are my kids being challenged?
Are my kids being treated equally?
Are my kids learning anything?
Are my kids being pulled down to the lower level of their non English speaking peers?
Are my kids being picked on by the non western students?
These are just a few things that run through my head every morning when I drop them off at school.
The things is, I can not home school them – I tried (you can read about it somewhere in the July 2005 posts???), and there is really no other choice for them other than where they are right now.
Choifat? ARE YOU KIDDING ME? I get sick just thinking about that school and it’s so called teaching methods.
AAESS? Not going to happen. I have many issues with this school too – the biggest being that my kids are American and the curriculum just won’t work for us.
FUTURE? I would rather gouge my eyes out with chop sticks…..I will leave it at that. I am sure the teachers are great and the curriculum is ok, if they are still using Harcourt, but ….well, I will just leave that alone – it is personal.
Emirates National School? Well, Hmmm……
Al Ain American School? Gosh…………
They all have issues. Though Choufait has so many things wrong with it I can not even begin to touch on them in a blog post – and I won’t.
Like I said, you just need to get here and choose for yourself. Seems most people flock to AAESS and think that is the ONLY school worth sending your kids to here. Not true.
You need to think about what you want your kids to get out of this experience too. Do you want your kids to experience this culture and the people of this country, or do you want your kids to be in their own little ex-pat bubble? How far are you willing to push yourself and your children to help them have a full experience that is memorable and safe? You also need to take in to consideration your child’s abilities and how they cope with different situations. What is their academic level? Are they self starters? Do they cope with self study well or do they need more guidance? I find that my children are very self reliant and because of that, are doing well in a school that does not have a large number of expats in it. Some of our friends’ children are not doing so well. It is not because they are not smart – far from that – they just require more one on one attention. You must consider these things when choosing a school.
It is all just a very personal subject and I can not tell you where to send your kids. What I can do is advise you to really think about what it is you want to accomplish while here and what it is you want your family to learn while here. What is the point of coming to this strange and beautiful country if you never step out of your comfort zone?
Better yet, what is the point of life if you never step out of your comfort zone?