With reporting from Riham Sheble
As some parents in Qatar continue to search for school places for the upcoming academic year, the Ministry of Education and Higher Education has launched a new online portal listing private schools across the country.
Locations are displayed on a map of Qatar, with flags denoting which type is curriculum is taught at each school.
In addition to browsing schools by neighborhood, users can find information on tuition fees, the size of the student body, contact details and other information.
The website also includes space for the school’s annual performance reports and number of vacant student spots. However, those details do not appear to have been uploaded yet.
Finding school spaces has been a regular source of frustration and anxiety for many parents in Qatar, especially those who are new to the country.
Education officials in Qatar concede some residents may have trouble find room in a school teaching a specific curriculum in their neighborhood, but say there is an adequate number of schools for the country as a whole.
Even though new facilities are being constructed at a rapid pace, education industry experts say Qatar is likely to see a shortage of schools in the coming years.
The recent waves of layoffs at major energy firms, health care providers as well as other businesses and organizations has likely reduced this demand as expats and their families are forced to leave Qatar.
Anecdotally, however, some of the country’s more popular schools say this has merely shortened, rather than eliminated, their waiting list of student.
Are you still searching for school places? Thoughts?