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Monday, January 24, 2022

Supreme Education Council: 13 new schools to open in Qatar this fall



With reporting from Riham Sheble

Tackling the ongoing school place shortage in Qatar, the Supreme Education Council has announced that 13 new schools and six kindergartens are expected to open next month to students across the country.

Some 28 private schools had previously applied for licenses to begin operations this fall, but only about half apparently met the requirements in time for a September start.

No list of the new schools was provided, but last month, Qatar’s first Finnish school said it would be among those meeting increasing demand for primary school places among residents.

mes indian school.jpg

And yesterday, the Rajagiri Public School said it was also opening its first campus this September in Abu Hamour.

The move comes as Indian expats here have been struggling to enroll their children in school following a crackdown on classrooms with more than 30 students.

Residents from all walks of life have been complaining for the past few years about how hard it is to enroll their children in schools here. Some institutions have said they get thousands of applications for only a dozen available places.

The rising demand for private school spots is partly due to the increasing expat population, but also comes as the average Qatari family decides to spend more on children’s education, and utilizes the expanding voucher program to place their kids in private school.

According to the SEC, some 71 schools are now covered by the voucher program:

Later in the year

In a statement this week, the SEC also said that 22 other schools would be open by the end of the coming school year, between October 2014 and May 2015. Additionally, it pledged to open nine more kindergartens by December.

Parents have been especially hard-pressed to find vacancies in kindergartens after a new law that passed this year decreed that children over the age of four years old could no longer attend nursery schools.

The construction and opening of the dozens of planned schools were first mentioned at the end of March, as one of the few details available about Qatar’s latest budget, which took effect on April 1.

The financial plan includes a promise to construct some 85 schools over the next year and a half.

The move was lauded as it will help ease some of the strain on Qatar’s overburdened education system, and mitigate some of the stress on companies struggling to recruit expats deterred by a lack of school places.

Are you finding it easier to get a school place for your child? Thoughts?


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7 years ago

The education system in Qatar is definitely under pressure to cope with the increasing population and the standards set by the government. While it obviously makes sense to open up more schools to meet the demand, I feel that the quality of the education should be significantly increased as well.

I moved to Qatar during 7th grade and left after finishing my freshman year of high school in 2011. I went to a well-known private British school and I must say quite frankly, the education standards are no match for even public schools in America. And I’m not one of those people to complain yet continue to endure the system. It was bad enough that I actually moved back to Illinois to finish my high school.

Now I’m not saying that everything about the education system is bad, that would be absurd to say. But overall, the quality of the education, in my opinion, is not where it should be considering how great schools claim it to be. For example among other things, I don’t think it’s appropriate for the student body to have a new principal every month (of course I’m exaggerating, but you know what I mean).

I really do hope that Qatar steps up their focus on providing a quality education to all the students, especially high schoolers that are on track to attending college.

7 years ago

I can bet for sure it will be difficult, if not near impossible, to fill the schools with good quality teachers. With increasing living costs and stagnating salaries there is little to draw experienced, qualified teachers to Qatar.

It also takes many many years for schools to establish themselves. Purely opening so many new schools may reduce the demand for places, but the solid demand for good schools will still be there and I feel may be secondary on the SEC’s to do list. This is of course a step in the right direction, but it remains to be seen if these new schools will turn out, as so many schools in Qatar have, to be more money factories motivated by profit, rather than quality education institutions.

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