Fee increase for Abu Dhabi private schools

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ABU DHABI // Fees will rise this term at 30 private schools in the capital, the Abu Dhabi Education Council said yesterday.

The schools will be allowed to increase fees by up to 9 per cent.

Of the 67 schools that asked to increase fees, more than half were turned down.

Hamad Al Dhaheri, executive director for private schools and quality assurance at the council, said rises had been approved only for schools that had a good reason for higher fees, including those that wanted to raise salaries or improve infrastructure.

Ten private schools will open this year, with 16,000 places and annual fees ranging from Dh8,000 to more than Dh50,000.

Of the emirate's 299 state schools, 50 have closed or merged, with 21 new and eight refurbished schools taking their place.

A recent study of the private education sector in the Emirates predicted school enrolment is expected to grow by 54 per cent in Dubai and Abu Dhabi by 2020, with more international education brands vying for a piece of the booming education sector.

Booz & Co's projection, based on population growth figures, is a lure for investors further sweetened by The Parthenon Group's research that shows 22 per cent growth in enrolment of pupils at private schools between 2008 and 2011.