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Education news from the Middle East and beyond. All the important stories, exclusive interviews, plus authoritative opinion and analysis

alef edtech

Alef Education to be first edtech with UAE bourse listing

Alef Education plans to offer a 20 percent stake on the Abu Dhabi stock exchange, becoming the first edtech – education technology – company to list in the UAE. The selling shareholders, Tech Nova Investment, Sole Proprietorship and Kryptonite Investments, will offload 1.4 billion shares. However, they will not receive proceeds from the initial public […]

Amanat’s education platform includes Middlesex University Dubai

Dubai’s Amanat moves ahead with education platform IPO

Amanat Holdings is planning for a potential initial public offering (IPO) of its education platform. The Dubai-listed healthcare and education investment company aims to monetise its education platform by creating a new holding company.  Advisors have been appointed to explore the monetisation options to unlock significant shareholder value, the company said in a Dubai Finanical Market filing […]

Egyptian schools sometimes operate in shifts to avoid classroom overcrowding and the country is facing a shortage of more than 300,000 teachers

Education underspend dents Egypt’s long-term prospects

Egypt’s failure to meet its constitutionally mandated spending on education – partly as a result of spiralling state debts – is hurting its long-term development. The country’s education sector plan for 2023-2027 estimates 1.5 million children were out of school in 2021 and that 250,000 additional classrooms must be built to accommodate the current school […]

Teenage students use a laptop and tablet. One cybersecurity expert said pupils' personal devices could increase the risk of data breaches

Cybercrooks have their eyes on Gulf schools, experts warn

The education sector in the GCC has emerged as a prime target for cybercriminals because of budgetary constraints and a lack of expertise, tech experts have told AGBI. “Schools, in particular, are vulnerable due to their extensive storage of sensitive personal information and comparatively lower investments in cybersecurity,” said Ram Narayanan, country manager at Check […]

Taaleem has doubled its investment in edtech over the past five years but says it is selective with its use

Mena reaches for tech to upgrade results in education

Demand for education technology, or edtech, is growing in the Middle East and North Africa as countries seek to bolster learning to drive economic growth.  However, experts warned against excessive use of technology in classrooms, saying it could affect the attainment of basic skills such as reading and writing.  Examples of edtech include interactive whiteboards, […]

UAE schools operator Taaleem said student numbers across its portfolio of 32 schools rose to almost 38,000

Taaleem profits rise with surge in UAE student numbers

An increase in student enrolments by more than one-third helped UAE schools operator Taaleem achieve a 53 percent increase in annual profits for the first half of the 2023-24 academic year. Taaleem, which operates schools on behalf of the Abu Dhabi, Dubai and UAE federal governments, said student numbers across its portfolio of 32 UAE […]

There are more than 1 million school-age children in the UAE, which will grow to 1.25 million by 2030, threatening a teacher shortfall

UAE teacher shortfall is looming ‘iceberg’

The UAE will need up to 30,000 more teachers by 2030, a shortfall that needs confronting, an expert has warned. The total number of students in the public and private sector in the UAE for 2020-2021 stood at 1.04 million. This is expected to increase to 1.25 million students by 2030. Based on this growth […]

Taaleem had more than 27,000 students across its portfolio at the end of August 2022

Taaleem aims to double revenues after 60% profit rise

Taaleem, the UAE schools operator, plans to double its revenues by 2028 by opening “at least one school every two years”, managing more government schools and diversifying into early years, its chief executive told AGBI.  The company, which has low debt, has yet to deploy the proceeds of its AED750 million ($204 million) initial public […]

Child, Female, Girl Taaleem now operates 31 schools, including Dubai British School, with four more planned school pupils students

Keen students enrol to bring Taaleem ‘record’ revenues

Revenues at the UAE schools operator Taaleem grew by 11.5 percent to a record AED258.7 million ($70.4 million) in the first quarter of the 2023-2024 academic year ending November 30, compared to the same period in 2022-2023, it said on Friday.  Taaleem, which listed on Dubai Financial Market stock exchange in November 2022, also posted […]

Enrolment in Dubai kindergartens has risen 15% in a year

Dubai kindergarten sector shows strong potential

The number of children enrolled at nurseries, or kindergartens, in Dubai has risen 15 percent over the past year, the government said, pointing to increased investment opportunities in the early years education sector.  The figures from Dubai’s Knowledge and Human Development Authority (KHDA) show that 250 “early childhood centres” operate in the emirate, 27 of […]

Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice President and Prime Minister of the UAE and Ruler of Dubai, attending the Arab Strategy Forum 2024

Dubai unveils $56bn plan to improve standard of living

Dubai has unveiled a AED208 billion ($56.64 billion) ten-year strategy aimed at making the city one of the top three in the world for standard of living. There are also plans to double the number of Emirati families and triple the number of citizens working in the private sector by 2033. “We aim to double […]

Saudi Arabia will need an extra 1.2m school places by 2030, Colliers says

Saudi private schools’ report card points to untapped potential 

Saudi Arabia has the Gulf’s lowest rate of students attending private schools, despite being the region’s largest market, a report has found. Consultancy Colliers, which published its overview of K-12 education (kindergarten to 12th grade, covering ages 5 to 18) in the kingdom last month, attributed the low take-up to issues around education quality and […]

Man watching tv and eating popcorn at home on a couch, back view

In the streaming age, the TV stays on after Ramadan

YouTube creators and streaming services are changing the face of television all over the world – but particularly in Arab countries, according to executives who attended the Red Sea Film Festival in Jeddah this month. The entertainment industry in the Middle East traditionally focused on the fasting month, when TV shows could find a captive […]

Mohammed Al Kuwaiti, head of cybersecurity for the UAE government. Lack of resources and too many manual processes are just a few of the IT safety issues facing companies

UAE cybersecurity is failing, say IT executives

Inadequate technology is one of the primary causes of data breaches suffered by UAE companies, despite huge investments made by IT departments in the Gulf state to combat cyberattacks, say experts. Companies in the Mena region spent $2.8 billion on cybersecurity last year, according to US technology research and consulting firm Gartner.  Yet a report […]

Masked and socially distanced pupils at a Saudi school in 2021. The OECD's Pisa tests show the impact of the pandemic on education

Saudi schools ‘doing better at maths but still lagging behind’

Saudi Arabia’s schools have improved in the past few years, but are still below the international average and a long way behind the best performers, according to the OECD. Teenagers from 81 countries were tested for the OECD Programme for International Student Assessment (Pisa), which published its 2022 report on Tuesday. The tests measured the […]

Ground testing of Boom's XB-1 at the Mojave Air & Space Port

Neom fund invests in US supersonic aircraft maker

Newly launched Neom Investment Fund (NIF) has invested in Boom Supersonic, a US company developing the world’s fastest airliner. The value of the investment was not given. However, Boom confirmed that the total funding to date now exceeds $700 million. As part of the agreement, Boom and NIF will collaborate on opportunities to make the Gulf […]

Saudi Arabia's new development fund was involved in supporting more than 400 projects related to water, roads and schools

Saudi Arabia to invest $500m in African development

Saudi Arabia is to sign agreements worth more than SAR2 billion ($533 million) with African nations to invest in development projects and help boost “Africa’s voice” in international affairs.  “Today we’ll witness the signing of agreements between the Saudi Fund for Development and a number of African countries for projects exceeding 2 billion riyals,” the […]

Indoors, Adult, Male

AI education takes centre stage in the UAE

Just over three-quarters of UAE students aged between 12 to 15 believe that artificial intelligence skills are critical in finding a job after finishing education. Some 77 percent of those surveyed by Abu Dhabi’s Mohamed Bin Zayed University (MBZUAI) of Artificial Intelligence said AI aptitude and literacy were critical for their generation. To harness the […]

Fahad Al Blooshi, David White, Mounir Haidar

UK’s Gordonstoun to open Abu Dhabi campus in 2026

The UK boarding school Gordonstoun, which boasts King Charles III as one of its former pupils, will open its first regional campus in Abu Dhabi’s Jubail Island master development in September 2026. Jubail Island Investment Company (JIIC) and Spaces Investment & Real Estate Development (Spaces) have signed an agreement with Gordonstoun, obtaining the exclusive regional rights to […]