Abu Dhabi schools offer discounts during virus outbreak

Discounts to apply for several Abu Dhabi schools for parents working from home whose children are undergoing remote learning during COVID-19 outbreak.
Tuesday 07/04/2020
A picture taken on March 15th shows school buses parked outside a closed school in Dubai. (AFP)
A picture taken on March 15th shows school buses parked outside a closed school in Dubai. (AFP)

ABU DHABI - Abu Dhabi schools have unrolled fee discounts to help parents of students undergoing remote learning during the coronavirus pandemic.

Aldar Academies, one of the emirate’s leading education institutes, is implementing a 20 per cent discount.

“Furthermore, we understand that the economic impact of the current situation may be felt for longer than a few months, so we will be introducing a zero-percent interest monthly payment plan for the 2020-2021 academic year to help our parents manage their expenditure and avoid external loans to pay school fees. This is in addition to any catering and transport refunds already processed for Term 3,” Aldar Academies said in a press statement.

The discounts come after directives by the education sector regulator, the Abu Dhabi Department of Education and Knowledge (ADEK), after parents stressed the difficulty of paying fees in full as most of them are working from home while supporting their children’s remote learning.

The discounts apply to Pearl Academy, Al Muna Academy, Al Ain Academy, Al Bateen Academy, Al Mamoura Academy, West Yas Academy and Al Yasmina Academy.

Schools will also facilitate individual parent payment plans, re-enrolment packages and reduced school fees for the next academic year, while waiving application fees and payment plans for deposits for the 2020-2021 academic year.

Major UAE education provider GEMS has said it will implement a means-tested approach to offer help to families negatively impacted by the coronavirus crisis, including deferment of fees, payment plans and discounts. Some schools will also waive all registration fees, assessments and administration fees until further notice, in a further help in hand to struggling parents.

The emirate’s International Indian School has also said it will offer a discount of up to 30 percent for the term, and an additional 10 to 15 per cent discount for siblings as well as waiving transport costs.

The UAE extended the nationwide distance learning system - which was scheduled to end on April 4 - until the end of the academic year, in a step to safeguard public health and curb the spread of the pandemic.

This article was first published on Middle East Online