Roundtable with parents and Dubai schools proves an education
Dubai schools justify the need for the 'infamous' 500 dirham processing fee...
March 26, 2013 6:09 by Muhammad Aldalou
As Kipp pointed out, it’s not that parents are happy to pay those fees even when they realise how slim their admission chances are, it’s that there’s no choice involved in the matter. After all, it’s a monopoly. The problems parents have in Dubai are relatively unique. In other countries, there’s a standard pyramid of hierarchy (not necessarily in terms of quality); beginning with state and public schools and moving up to private and more prestigious schools. In Dubai, that pyramid is inverted.
Upon conclusion of this subject, the room (at least as far as the parents were concerned) were unanimous in saying that the 500 dirham processing fee should be made refunded by the school should they fail to provide a place for the child while the schools said it was a necessary fee to pay for their staff’s time and effort to either process your application or assess your child.
In the Womb
This has been repeated over and over again and yet Kipp suspects that many still mistake it for an overstatement or a joke, but the fact is that many mothers in Dubai actually need to express interest or even pencil in their child on a school’s waiting list while it’s still in the womb. Worrying about finding a school precedes finding a reliable brand of diapers.
In fact, the Head Teacher at Horizon school said today that she had to note her interest in admission, while she was still pregnant. And funnily enough, this is at at a school she works for. Ambareen Musa, who is still currently struggling to find a school for her daughter, is waiting to hear back from four different ones – most of which have told her that it will be months before she even knows if there’s a chance.
We know this is the norm here, but the real question should be? Does that make it right? Is this something that expatriate parents have to simply ‘live with’ or is a higher intervention needed?