66 Dubai schools ready to hike fees with KHDA approval

Number of schools seeking fee hike doubled to 101; fee raise range from 3-6%

The number of Dubai schools that have applied for a fee mark-up has nearly doubled, with number escalating from 53 to 101 in less than a month.

Mohammed Darwish, Chief of Regulations and Compliance Commission (RCC) of the education regulatory authority Knowledge and Human Development Authority (KHDA), said: “101 schools have applied and 66 are approved.”

The list of the names of those approved, however, was not released to the media, with Darwish adding, “We usually do not release a list of schools. Their fees structure will get updated on our website only.”

Earlier this month, the Dubai Schools Inspection Bureau (DSIB) report had unveiled its grading for the year 2011-2012, with 11 Dubai schools rated “outstanding”.

As per the guidelines set by KHDA, the fee hike will be determined based on the DSIB grading and the Educational Cost Index (ECI), which is devised by the Dubai Statistics Centre.

Schools that are rated “outstanding” will be allowed 6 per cent increase, while schools marked “good” are allowed 4.5 per cent, and those listed as “satisfactory” and “unsatisfactory” allowed 3 per cent.

Some schools could even be allowed by the KHDA to increase more than 6 per cent. And those that fall in this bracket are the not-for-profit, embassy and special needs schools and those investing in infrastructure expansion. The permission, if granted, would mean those schools will have to cap the hike for the next three years.

Detailing the process, Darwish explained, “Depending on the nature of the request and the level of analysis required, processing time for fee applications may take between 5 to 15 working days.”

The decision of whether to mark-up or not, the KHDA clarified, remained with the schools. “Schools may or may not choose to increase fees. This decision lies with the schools themselves. However, once they have chosen to increase fees and apply to KHDA, they can only do so in line with KHDA’s approval.”

The KHDA framework reported that this could become an annual exercise, with schools permitted to apply for a fee increase again next year, but only within the criteria set by the KHDA. The fee increase is permitted only for schools that have clocked three years and not for new schools.

[Image via Shutterstock]

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