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The Future of Schooling: How Online Private Schools are Transforming Education

It’s no secret that technology and remote learning are revolutionizing education in the United Arab Emirates and across the GCC Region.  While this movement gained traction before COVID-19, the pandemic pushed remote learning into the spotlight.  While online learning isn’t the best option for all students, many students that struggled in physical classrooms, or were looking for greater flexibility in their learning, have found success in a virtual format.

Contents 

1. Increasing access to individualized learning plans

2. They put technology front and center

3. Improving student safety

4. Better resource allocation

5. Meeting the diverse needs of the students

6. Greater ability for blended learning

Given the positive response to online schooling during the pandemic, many families have explored more permanent options, such as online private schools. For many students, these options better meet the unique needs of each learner in a way that traditional schools cannot.  Moreover, programs such as the KHDA Rahal program in Dubai, are offering flexibility for students seeking a more bespoke learning experience.   And recently, many schools have expanded their options to give parents more control over their children’s academic future. These changes have all led to the growth of online private schools.

Moreover, online private schools are consistently reshaping the future of education in multiple ways, such as:

Increasing access to individualized learning plans

Historically, traditional international schools have adopted a set curriculum for all students in a grade. In many cases, the curriculum is similar to what is being taught to children in the same grade in the same curriculum anywhere in the world. However, online schooling brings the benefit of allowing for individualized learning plans which adapt to the unique needs of each student. Students can learn at their own pace and progress as they are ready. This approach is often far more effective than a standardized curriculum since it is tailored to the student’s needs and educational goals.   

They put technology front and center

Online private schools rely on technology to function. Advanced learning platforms incorporate a mix of instructional styles, live classes, and activities that capture a student’s attention and effectively deliver the material in a way that is easy to learn. Many online private schools also feature cutting-edge tech features, such as artificial intelligence and virtual reality.

These applications can create an immersive education experience and bring learning to life for students. One of the best ways to ensure your child’s academic success is to gauge their interest in the subjects being taught.

With tech platforms, many topics can be taught with more engaging strategies, which is a great way to foster a lifelong love for learning. And the children learning in this environment will likely feel more comfortable working in tech-based applications their entire lives, which is a huge deal since most of today’s students will likely have professional career that requires interaction with technology in some capacity.

Improving student safety

While many families explore online learning due to its educational benefits, a study and a series of focus group conducted by Advantaages Middle East found that online learning is also appealing from a student safety and social-emotional perspective.  Today’s children often face many challenges, including bullying.  And while many parents understand that they cannot protect their children from everything, they also recognize that there are reasonable ways to reduce the risk for their children.

Online private schools allow a child to learn – without distraction – from their own home or a small group learning center, which is often far more nurturing and emotionally safer than any school. 

Better resource allocation

Artificial intelligence doesn’t only have a role in education delivery with virtual schooling; it can also be used to help the entire online school system operate at peak performance. AI applications can look at data to optimize personalized learning, memory retention, and accessibility. This data can help educators and school administrators make better decisions about allocating resources in a way to get the best return on investment for students and their families.

Meeting the diverse needs of the students

Traditional schools progress at an average pace, meaning the material is covered in the amount of time it takes the average student to learn and retain it. However, average simply doesn’t work for many students who perform either better or worse than average. And unfortunately, if the teacher were to try to meet the need of the outliers, it would be to the detriment of the rest of the class.

With online private schooling, each child can learn at a unique pace with as much or as little assistance as they need. But more importantly, they can do it without distracting or impacting other students. This benefit allows online schools to meet the needs of all students, not just the average ones.

Greater ability for blended learning

One of the biggest reasons many families are attracted to the idea of online private schools is that they offer much more flexibility than traditional school systems. And this is a huge benefit for families with parents who want to be more hands-on, or that want to foster many learning opportunities outside of the classroom.   In Dubai and across the UAE, Advantages Middle East partners with learning centers to offer small-group instruction and activities led by highly qualified teachers.  Students have the flexibility of choosing an in-person schedule to meet their needs, typically 2-4 days in a brick-and-mortar school setting and the rest of the time at home.  Parents are also discovering that it is very easy to expand upon a virtual lesson about art history by visiting a museum with the child after the lesson.  However, museums often have business hours, which makes it much harder to visit when a child is in school all day, every day.

Online learning allows the student to work on the material at their own pace and in their own space. And this means the child can learn from anywhere, even while on vacation. These events can be prime opportunities to make learning more fun and engaging, all while creating memories with your child that will last a lifetime. Unfortunately, the traditional school model isn’t compatible with this type of blended learning since it occurs almost exclusively in the classroom.  

Online private schools aren’t making small changes to education – they are completely rewriting the rules. And in many instances, this results in a higher quality of education, a happier and more engaged student, and more opportunities to leverage their skills and interests. There can be no doubt that online private schooling will continue to grow in the years to come as parents look for ways to give their children the best educational experience possible.

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