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Contents

School information .........2


Summary for parents and the community ........................................................................................ 3
Main inspection report ..................................................................................................................... 10
1. Students achievement ...............................................................................................................................11
2. Students personal and social development, and their innovation skills ................................................15
3. Teaching and assessment ...........................................................................................................................17
4. Curriculum ....................................................................................................................................................19
5. The protection, care, guidance and support of students ..........................................................................20
Provision for students with special educational needs and disabilities (SEND) ......................................21
6. Leadership and management .....................................................................................................................21
The views of the parents, teachers and students .....................................................................................24

Bradenton Preparatory Academy - Inspection Report 2015-2016

School information
General information

Students

Teachers / Support staff

Curriculum

Location

Dubai Sports City

Type of school

Private

Opening year of school

2009

Website

www.bradentonprepdubai.com

Telephone

04-4493600

Address

Dubai Sports City

Principal

Ian Deakin

Language of instruction

English

Inspection dates

22 to 25 February 2016

Gender of students

Boys and girls

Age range

4-18

Grades or year groups

Kindergarten 1 to Grade 12

Number of students on roll

824

Number of children in pre-kindergarten

Number of Emirati students

Number of students with SEND

44

Largest nationality group of students

US

Number of teachers

68

Largest nationality group of teachers

USA

Number of teaching assistants

23

Teacher-student ratio

1:12

Number of guidance counsellors

Teacher turnover

30%

Educational permit / Licence

US

Main curriculum

US

External tests and examinations

AP / SAT1 / PSAT

Accreditation

NEASC candidate

National Agenda benchmark tests

ISA / MAP

Bradenton Preparatory Academy - Inspection Report 2015-2016

Summary for parents and the community

Summary for parents and the community

Bradenton Preparatory Academy was inspected by DSIB from 22 to 25 February 2016. The overall quality of
education provided by the school was found to be acceptable.
In order to judge the overall quality of education provided by the school, inspectors considered six key standards
of performance. Inspectors looked at childrens attainment and progress in key subjects, their learning skills and
their personal and social development. They judged how effective teaching and the assessment of learning were
across the school. Inspectors considered how well the schools curriculum, including activities inside and outside
classrooms, met the educational needs of all children. They judged how well the school protected and supported
children. In addition inspectors judged the effectiveness of leadership and governance, including management,
staffing, facilities and resources.
The inspection judgements were drawn from evidence gathered by the inspection team, including observing
children learning in lessons, looking at their work, talking with children, meetings with the staff, parents and
governors, and reviewing the parents, teachers and senior students surveys.
family

Bradenton Preparatory Academy - Inspection Report 2015-2016

How well did the school perform overall?


Overall, Bradenton Preparatory Academy provided an acceptable quality of education for its students.

Students' attainment and progress in English, mathematics and science were at least good across all
phases. Students were actively engaged in their learning, using problem-solving and critical thinking skills
and working well both independently and in collaboration with others. When available, they were able to
use learning technologies to good effect. In Islamic education attainment and progress were acceptable.
In Arabic as an additional language, attainment was weak in middle and high school phases. In Arabic as
a first language, attainment and progress were weak in middle and high school. Learning skills were good
overall.

Students' attitudes, behavior and relationships with staff and with one another were positive. By middle
and high school, students had developed a clear understanding of Islamic values, UAE heritage and of
their own and other world cultures.

Teaching was mostly good, although more variable in the middle school. In English, teachers used several
highly effective strategies to improve literacy skills, for example, the Daily Five. In science, teaching
included inquiry-based activities that motivated students. However, across subjects and phases, teachers
were inconsistent in providing challenge for higher achieving students. The school had many varied
assessments in place, and in the Kindergarten these were being used to good effect to adapt curriculum
and inform teaching.

The curriculum was broad and balanced, and consistently aligned with Common Core State Standards,
Next Generation Science Standards and Washington State Standards. However, the curriculum was not
always adapted to meet the needs of all students, especially those with special educational needs and
disabilities, and those who were gifted and talented. The curriculum was reviewed regularly within subject
departments but lacked the comprehensive overview needed to ensure horizontal and vertical cohesion.

Systems and procedures for health and safety were outstanding. Relationships between staff and students
were respectful and purposeful, and students well-being and personal development were a high
priority. The school identified many students with special educational needs and disabilities (SEND), but
did not have a system to support those who were gifted and talented.

Senior leaders worked well as a team, providing clear direction for the school. However, there was lack
of clarity about the roles of the Executive Principal and the Head of School, and who was the key school
leader. Action plans were in place and had had an impact on some key aspects of school improvement,
but other recommendations from the previous inspection report - specifically relating to Arabic - showed
lack of attention. Communication with parents had increased and parents generally felt involved and
informed. The governing body provided structured support through the GEMS 'triad' system but had failed
to communicate clearly the role of the new Executive Principal to the school community. The governing
body had not fully held school leaders to account for action on the recommendations from the previous
inspection report.

Bradenton Preparatory Academy - Inspection Report 2015-2016

What did the school do well?

Students were courteous, self-reliant and supportive of one another.

In English, the school used highly effective strategies that had improved students' reading, writing,
speaking and listening skills, especially in the Kindergarten and the elementary school.

In science, effective teaching and the use of Next Generation Science Standards, led students to think and
behave like scientists, especially in the middle school.

The school's systems and procedures for health and safety were outstanding.

What does the school need to do next?

The school must improve the quality of teaching, assessment and curriculum design in Arabic as a first
language and Arabic as an additional language in order to raise student achievement. This has been a
recommendation for several years.

The governing body must clearly identify and communicate to all stakeholders who is the school's key
leader.

Senior leaders must ensure that teachers consistently provide tasks that appropriately challenge students
who are higher achievers.

How well did the school provide for students with special educational needs and disabilities?

The school identified the needs of students with SEND but not all students with SEND were identified.

The SEND coordinator and her team provided an adequate level of support and guidance to parents.

Parents were involved in developing the individual education plans (IEPs) for their children, as well as in
regular school activities and school committees.

The SEND staff updated parents about their children's progress and achievement through meetings at the
beginning of the year, periodic discussions and termly written reports.

Many students with SEND were making adequate progress in line with their grade level peers, supported
by scheduled pull-out sessions and push-in class support.

Bradenton Preparatory Academy - Inspection Report 2015-2016

National Agenda Parameter


In 2014, H.H. Sheikh Mohammed Bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice-President and Prime
Minister of UAE, and Ruler of Dubai, launched the UAE National Agenda 2021, with
education being a prime focus. The National Agenda includes two major objectives
developed with the intent of placing the UAE among the most successful countries that
provide world-class education. By 2021, it is expected that the UAE will feature in the top
twenty countries in the Programme for International Student Assessment (PISA) test and
in the top fifteen countries in the Trends in Mathematics and Science Studies (TIMSS)
test.
In response to this, each participating school was issued a report on their students performance in these
international assessments and in addition, they were provided with clear targets for improving their performance.
This academic year, KHDA introduced the National Agenda Parameter, which is a method for measuring and
monitoring schools progress towards achieving their individual National Agenda targets through the use of
external benchmarking assessments.

Main points:

The school met the registration requirements of the National Agenda Parameter
No attainment data from the National Agenda Parameter was available to make a judgment on the
schools progress towards meeting the National Agenda targets.

Although there had been some orientation sessions for teachers, students and parents, the school did not
do enough to promote awareness of the UAE National Agenda among its stakeholders.

The school did not intentionally modify its curriculum for better alignment with TIMSS and PISA.

Teachers were very effective in using strategies to promote students' critical thinking and inquiry in
English, mathematics, and science. In English, for example, students knew how to use their prior
knowledge and textbooks to make an inference about a story. In science, students designed an
investigation to find the relationship between kinetic and potential energy of a rolling marble.

Students used a variety of resources to answer questions posed by the teacher, and they were able
to work independently to find things out. However, they rarely used Learning Technology to conduct
independent open-ended research.

Bradenton Preparatory Academy - Inspection Report 2015-2016

Innovation in education
The UAE Vision 2021 sets out the National Agenda for the UAE to be among the most
innovative nations in the world. The National Innovation Strategy sets the context for
innovation and innovative leadership. It provides a basis for evaluating public and private
schools in order to deliver a world-class education for all children in the UAE.
Innovation is driven by a commitment to excellence and continuous improvement. It is based
on curiosity, the willingness to take risks, to experiment and to test assumptions as well as
questioning and challenging the status quo. Being innovative is about looking beyond what
we currently do well, identifying the great ideas of tomorrow and putting them into practice.

Promoting a culture of innovation:

The school did not have a strategic plan but was aligning its efforts with the GEMS corporate innovation
mission. An innovation coordinator (who was also the ICT coordinator) was in position and in the
limited time available she was researching and disseminating ideas and life applications for teachers
to integrate into their regular teaching units. Teachers development of students innovation skills
varied across subjects and phases. Students were competent users of learning technologies although
limited ICT resources reduced their opportunities to develop or apply their skills. The schools virtual
learning environment was widely used by teachers, students and parents.

Bradenton Preparatory Academy - Inspection Report 2015-2016

Overall school performance

Acceptable
1. Students achievement

Islamic education

Arabic as a first
language

Elementary

Middle

Attainment

Not applicable

Acceptable

Progress

Not applicable

Acceptable

Attainment

Not applicable

Acceptable

Weak

Weak

Progress

Not applicable

Acceptable

Weak

Weak

Attainment

Not applicable

Acceptable

Progress

Not applicable

Acceptable

Attainment

Very good

Progress

Very good

Good

Good

Attainment

Good

Good

Good

Good

Progress

Good

Good

Good

Good
Good

Acceptable
Acceptable

High
Acceptable
Acceptable

Arabic as an
additional language

KG

Weak

Weak

English

Mathematics

Science

Good

Acceptable

Good
Good

Attainment

Good

Good

Very good

Progress

Good

Good

Very good

Good

Middle

High

Good

Good

KG
Learning skills

Good

Acceptable

Good

Bradenton Preparatory Academy - Inspection Report 2015-2016

Elementary
Good

2. Students personal and social development, and their innovation skills

Personal development
Understanding of Islamic values and
awareness of Emirati and world
cultures
Social responsibility and innovation
skills

KG

Elementary

Middle

High

Very good

Very good

Very good

Very good

Acceptable

Acceptable

Good

Good

Good

Good

Good
Good

3. Teaching and assessment

Teaching for effective learning


Assessment

KG

Elementary

Middle

High

Good

Good

Acceptable

Good

Very good

Acceptable

Acceptable

Acceptable

4. Curriculum
KG

Elementary

Middle

High

Curriculum design and


implementation

Good

Good

Good

Good

Curriculum adaptation

Good

Acceptable

Acceptable

Acceptable

5. The protection, care, guidance and support of students

Health and safety, including


arrangements for child protection /
safeguarding
Care and support

KG

Elementary

Middle

High

Outstanding

Outstanding

Outstanding

Outstanding

Good

Good

Good

Good

6. Leadership and management


All phases
The effectiveness of leadership
School self-evaluation and improvement planning
Parents and the community
Governance
Management, staffing, facilities and resources

Bradenton Preparatory Academy - Inspection Report 2015-2016

Good
Acceptable
Good
Acceptable
Good

Main inspection report

Main inspection report

The Dubai Schools Inspection Bureau (DSIB) is responsible for inspecting and reporting on the standards
reached by students and the quality of education provided in Dubais private schools.

Judgements are made on a six-point scale


Very weak

Weak

Acceptable

Good

Very good

Outstanding

Using this scale, the Main inspection report contains the judgements about the different aspects,
phases and subjects that form the work of the school.
It provides the reasons for the answers to the questions in the Summary for parents and the
community:

How well did the school perform overall?


What did the school do well?
What does the school need to do next?

Bradenton Preparatory Academy - Inspection Report 2015-2016

10

1. Students achievement

KG
Subjects

Attainment

Progress

Islamic education

Not applicable

Not applicable

Arabic as a first language

Not applicable

Not applicable

Arabic as an additional language

Not applicable

Not applicable

English

Very good

Mathematics
Science

Good
Good

Very good
Good
Good

In English, the older children made rapid progress in speaking, listening, reading and writing. The children
in KG1 were able to identify the letters of the alphabet and matched some sounds with the letters. Some
were also able to write their names and read some three-letter words. KG2 children were above expected
levels in literacy. They wrote with meaning and purpose. They read simple books with fluency and
comprehension. The older children had strong book knowledge, which included knowing about different
types of text and author's purpose.

In mathematics, a majority of children demonstrated skills and understanding above the US Common Core
State Standards. The children made good progress in relation to their assessed starting points and as
measured against learning objectives. Most children counted and added numbers in play, and used the
language of more than and less than. Most could match numbers and objects using one-to-one
correspondence, and many were able to sequence simple patterns and use numbers to 20 and above.
They could identify shapes and colors of objects.

In science, children's understanding of the world and healthy living was secure. Children were given time
for exploration and deepening their understanding of concepts through a play-based discovery time each
day. Their use of the scientific method was developing through focused activities that encouraged them
to think and make predictions. During lessons, the children used observations and inquiry skills to explain
world phenomena and experiences. For example, they explored the characteristics of a pumpkin, including
the outside lines, texture and whether it would sink or float.

Bradenton Preparatory Academy - Inspection Report 2015-2016

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Elementary
Subjects

Attainment

Progress

Islamic education

Acceptable

Acceptable

Arabic as a first language

Acceptable

Acceptable

Arabic as an additional language

Acceptable

Acceptable

English

Good

Good

Mathematics

Good

Good

Science

Good

Good

In Islamic education, most students understood the Five Pillars of Islam adequately. In higher
elementary grades, most students could interpret some parts of 'Hadeeth' and use it to support
their understanding of Islamic principles. Most students made acceptable progress in their
understanding and application of Islamic knowledge, principles and values to their daily lives.
Their recitation skills were an area for improvement.

In Arabic as a first language, most students were attaining at levels that were below the
curriculum standards. This was confirmed by internal assessment information. Students
responded to closed questions asked by the teachers but discussions and collaboration were not
part of classroom practice. Students had very little exposure to reading texts of varied styles. They
were often not engaged in the lessons because some texts were above their level of
understanding. Writing was underdeveloped across the phase due to very limited opportunities
for free writing. Students did not use technology to collaborate with peers or to complete
assignments.

In Arabic as an additional language, most students attained levels that were in line with
expectations according to their years of learning the language. Internal assessment information
confirmed that students made expected progress in knowledge, skills and understanding.
Students responded to closed questions posed by the teacher but discussions and collaboration
were not part of the classroom activities. Students made adequate progress in developing their
spoken vocabulary but writing was underdeveloped across the phase due to very limited
opportunities for free writing. Students did not use technology to collaborate with peers or to
complete assignments.

In English, students attainment and progress were good. Students spoke clearly and with purpose,
explaining ideas and defending a point of view. Their writing was coherent; they gave reasons to support
their different ideas. Students drafted, edited and created presentation-level work in their writing,
showing clear improvement from year to year throughout the phase. Reading skills were developing very
well within the expected grade level band and students reading scores showed improvement against
grade level expectations.

In mathematics, students demonstrated good attainment and progress. They enjoyed math activities,
particularly when using the Smart Board or manipulatives, and when learning was connected to real-life
applications. They understood mathematical terms and were able to apply their knowledge to complete
age-appropriate mathematical operations. For example, Grade 1 students were able to identify tens and
ones in two-digit numbers; Grade 4 students could find common denominators in pairs of fractions, and
Grade 5 students were able to extend their previous knowledge of multiplication to multiply fractions.

Bradenton Preparatory Academy - Inspection Report 2015-2016

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In science, students demonstrated good attainment. They consistently used hands-on activities to acquire
understanding of new concepts. In Grade 2, for example, students created posters showing habitats with
the organisms that live in them. In lessons, students often made good progress, especially when they
were strongly challenged by the learning objectives and by the teachers open and probing questioning
techniques.

Middle
Subjects
Islamic education
Arabic as a first language
Arabic as an additional language

Attainment
Acceptable
Weak
Weak

Progress
Acceptable
Weak
Acceptable

English

Good

Good

Mathematics

Good

Good

Very good

Very good

Science

In Islamic education, students understood core Islamic principles and could link some Islamic values to
their own lives. They could identify some parts of the Seerah of Prophet Mohammad (PBUH) and the
Hadeeth that were relevant to core principles of Islam. For example, they understood the impact of
obeying ones parents and why God decreed that we do so. They understood the impact of regular prayers
on our daily lives. Most students made adequate progress in their understanding of Islamic concepts and
laws. Their recitation skills were progressing at a slower pace.

Attainment and progress in Arabic as a first language were weak. Students knew a range of grammar
rules and how to put them into practice but their reading and writing skills were not developed to the
expected standard. Their writing was basic and often included errors. Their verbal communication skills
were limited to the use of colloquial Arabic.

Attainment in Arabic as an additional language was weak, although progress from the students starting
points was acceptable. Most students had adequate listening skills and made some progress in developing
their vocabulary. They could communicate simple answers appropriately but their speaking skills were
generally underdeveloped. Writing was also underdeveloped across the phase due to limited exposure to
different written styles and few opportunities to write and express their ideas.

In English, attainment and progress were good. Students were developing their abilities to
evaluate literature and compare it to their own experiences. They could analyze a situation with
Shakespeare's theatre, and make inferences as they understood the text. Students wrote in a
variety of genres, and showed improvement over time. Their writing was within the grade level
expectations for middle school, and reflected a good understanding of the rules and conventions
of writing. Students spoke very well, and articulated an argument or point of view with supporting
detail.

In mathematics, attainment and progress were good. This was confirmed by MAP results. Students
developed their knowledge, understanding and skills to the expected US curriculum levels. In Grade 6,
students could solve equations with one variable and the demonstrated understanding of which values
make the equation or inequality true. Grade 7 students analyzed proportional relationships and used them
to solve real-world problems. Grade 8 students used the recursive formula to find successive terms in a
numeric sequence.

Bradenton Preparatory Academy - Inspection Report 2015-2016

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In science, students showed high levels of attainment and progress, confirmed by external assessment
data. Students consistently acquired strong understanding of scientific concepts through hands-on
activities, and they frequently designed and conducted their own investigations. In Grade 6, for
example, students designed an experiment to identify the relationship between kinetic and potential
energy. In lessons, students progress was accelerated when they were given opportunities to reflect on
their own learning in order to improve it.

High
Subjects
Islamic education
Arabic as a first language
Arabic as an additional language

Attainment
Acceptable
Weak
Weak

English

Good

Mathematics

Good

Science

Good

Progress
Acceptable
Weak
Acceptable
Good
Good
Good

Students in Islamic education understood the major roles of the prophets and messengers, and could name
some of their Holy miracles. They could apply few rules of Tajweed in their recitation of the Holy Quran,
but this remains an area for improvement. They interpreted some verses of the Holy Quran that were
related to their daily lives and could compare their content to relevant parts of the Hadeeth. Most
students made adequate progress in lessons and over time.

In Arabic as a first language, students did not attain the expected level of knowledge, skills and
understanding. They developed an appropriate level of listening skills but they could not communicate
simple answers appropriately and, in general, their speaking skills were underdeveloped. Writing was also
weak across the phase due to limited exposure to different written styles and few opportunities to write
and express their ideas. Most students made adequate progress in developing their vocabulary but reading
skills were weak as students had no exposure to literary texts and a focus on grammar dominated the
lessons. Students were consistently working at a level below that expected for their age. Students did not
use technology to support their learning.

In Arabic as an additional language, most students' work was below the expectations. Students made
adequate progress in developing their vocabulary and could communicate simple answers but speaking
skills generally needed development. Communication opportunities were limited to answering closed
questions from a textbook. Writing was also underdeveloped across the phase due to very limited practice,
little exposure to different written styles, and the absence of literature. Nevertheless, most groups and
individuals made acceptable progress in relation to their starting points.

In English, attainment was good. Students identified aspects of plot, made connections to their own lives
and used inference to project their understanding of a given place and time. They could speak with detail
when presenting an argument and listened well to others. Towards the end of high school, writing was
strong, showing significant progress compared to starting points.

In mathematics, The majority of students demonstrated knowledge, understanding and skills that were
above, expected US curriculum levels. MAP data confirmed that students' attainment and progress were
above RIT scores. The most recent SAT scores demonstrated a similar picture. Grade 9 students understood
concepts of coordinate geometry. Grade 11 students knew and understood how to use permutations and
combinations in practical situations. In Grade 12, students understood independent and conditional
probability, and were able to apply mathematical concepts to solve complex problems.

Bradenton Preparatory Academy - Inspection Report 2015-2016

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In science, students' attainment and progress were good. Students' knowledge and understanding of
scientific concepts, such as protein synthesis and types of chemical bonds, were well developed. The
assessment data confirmed this. In lessons, students made good progress overall but their progress was
hindered when overly teacher-directed lessons did not allow students to take sufficient control of their
own learning.

KG
Learning skills

Good

Elementary
Good

Middle

High

Good

Good

Students enjoyed learning and most were engaged in their lessons and the wide range of
activities provided. Most students were motivated, eager, participatory learners. They sustained
their interest and enjoyed developing their skills through active learning, both independently and
in groups. They responded positively to teachers questioning and were capable of working
independently. They took responsibility for their own learning by setting their own targets and
goals and using teacher feedback to improve.

Students worked well in small groups and with partners. They were able to communicate their
thinking in purposeful ways that helped them analyze information and extend their views of
interesting topics. They were able to describe clearly their learning to peers and this helped them
to clarify their own thoughts and to consolidate their own knowledge. For example, younger
children used a pair/share strategy to draw inferences from previous knowledge and what was
in the books.

Students were often asked to begin lessons by reviewing what they already knew, which helped them
connect and use their knowledge and skills across the content areas. They were also able to make
connections to their personal experiences and understanding of the world. These were often the result of
purposeful lesson planning and teacher prompts but were sometimes made spontaneously. In the
Kindergarten, children were excited to be "experts" on animals and plants that lived in the desert.

Most students were developing their critical thinking skills in the majority of lessons, and students use of
their problem-solving skills was a common feature across all phases. For example, middle school students
were creative in acting out scenes without words or props as they learned about Shakespearean theater.
Students were beginning to use technology to enhance and deepen their understanding of key subjects
but this was still developing.

2. Students personal and social development, and their innovation skills


KG
Personal development

Very good

Elementary
Very good

Middle
Very good

High
Very good

There was a strongly caring ethos throughout the school, which contributed to the very good personal
development of students. The students enjoyed school and demonstrated positive attitudes towards
learning.. Younger children demonstrated self-reliance and a developing confidence. Students in the high
school had high aspirations and readily assumed leadership roles. They set goals and targets for
themselves and were aware of what they needed to do to be successful.

Bradenton Preparatory Academy - Inspection Report 2015-2016

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Students were self-disciplined and demonstrated good behavior in class and throughout the campus,
without overt adult intervention. Students were polite, courteous and respectful to adults and to each
other.

Student-staff relationships were positive and friendly. Students respected and valued their teachers and
the support and care they provided. Most students demonstrated a willingness to help each other in
lessons. The school was a multicultural community and the students appreciated one another's cultures.

All students had a very good awareness of healthy eating and the need to live healthy lifestyles. They
were active participants in physical education classes and many spoke of sports in which they participated,
both in and outside of school.

Attendance was very good across all phases. Students were mostly punctual in arriving at school and for
lessons throughout the school day.

Understanding of Islamic values and


awareness of Emirati and world
cultures

KG

Elementary

Acceptable

Acceptable

Middle
Good

High
Good

Most students could identify Islamic values and its impact on the daily life in the UAE. They
mentioned mosques as places of worship, and major landmarks in the UAE. Students, especially
in the high school, were aware that these symbols are an integral part of life in the UAE. Students
across the school considered that the UAE is a diverse Muslim country and identified respect and
honesty as two of the major values of Islam.

Students in higher grades reflected an understanding of UAE culture and heritage. They expressed
a sincere appreciation of what Emirati society has given them, compared to their home countries,
especially safety, security and freedom of belief. They also expressed an appreciation of the
modernity that defines Dubai compared to other Emirates.

Students, particularly in the middle and high school, were aware of their own cultural roots and
identities. They were happy mixing with others from different backgrounds and beliefs, and
appreciated celebrating different cultural traditions.

Bradenton Preparatory Academy - Inspection Report 2015-2016

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KG
Social responsibility and innovation
skills

Good

Elementary

Middle

Good

Good

High
Good

Students were proactive and responsible members of the school and the wider community. They
participated willingly in activities, and frequently initiated and led them. The student council was
an active and dynamic part of the school life, giving a voice to students from upper elementary
to Grade 12. The student council raised awareness about activities in the wider community, such
as Dubai Cares Walk for Education. It also raised money to buy solar lamps for a Kenya visit
during the Week without Walls. In Kindergarten, children regularly discussed helping each other
and being kind, and a specific lesson on respect focused on being a social contributor to improve
the well-being of all.

Students demonstrated a strong work ethic. They believed in hard work, determination and dedication.
During the weekly advisory sessions, teachers led students in discussions about issues that would prepare
them for life. Students appreciated their teachers' dedication to the after-school activities program that
supported students learning after school hours.

Students across the phases demonstrated commitment to environmental conservation. Students cared for
their school and found ways to improve its environment. For example, they each had their own water
bottles to refill, they saved plastic bottles for recycling and taps in washrooms were regulated to conserve
water. Children in the Kindergarten understood the concept of reduce, reuse, recycle.

3. Teaching and assessment


KG
Teaching for effective learning

Good

Elementary
Good

Middle
Acceptable

High
Good

Most teachers had a thorough knowledge of their subjects and how students learn best. This enabled
them to use multiple teaching strategies in lessons, which ensured that students made good
progress. However, in Arabic, teachers did not have adequate teacher training or pedagogical skills, and
therefore student progress was limited.

Lessons were well planned and aligned closely to the Common Core State Standards. Learning outcomes
were consistently written into plans and shared with the students. Teachers usually created interesting
learning environments and used time and resources effectively. Across much of the school there was a
purposeful learning atmosphere in which students were focused and showed a good work ethic. This was
not as evident in the middle school, where teaching was less consistent.

Relationships between students and teachers were strong in all phases. Teachers used appropriate
questioning to check for understanding and to engage students in meaningful conversations to promote
reflection and to clarify next steps in learning.

Most teachers recognized that students had different ability levels and some planned for this in
the lessons. However, challenge and support was not always evident through more personalized
focus questions, activities or other modifications.

Bradenton Preparatory Academy - Inspection Report 2015-2016

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Teachers encouraged students to take responsibility for their own learning by providing
opportunities for both collaborative and independent projects and activities. Some used questions
skillfully to encourage further thinking, as well as allowing time for reflection. This resulted in the
systematic development of critical thinking, problem solving and research skills in some subject
areas.

In Arabic, teachers had adequate subject knowledge. However, they had little awareness of how
to apply it. Lessons were generally not planned adequately. Few resources were used apart from
the text book, teacher talk and handouts in every class across the phases. The learning
environment did not promote any curiosity. Teachers were not skilled at using questions.
Questioning did not promote critical thinking. Teachers did not differentiate planning, teaching
and assessment. Teachers did not give students enough scope to develop their own approaches
to learning and how to think for themselves.

KG
Assessment

Very good

Elementary

Middle

High

Acceptable

Acceptable

Acceptable

Internal assessment processes were mostly consistent and aligned to the Common Core State Standards,
Next Generation Science Standards and Washington State Curriculum Standards. They provided accurate
data on student progress. In the Kindergarten, processes included baseline, mid- and end-of-year
summative assessments, and formative assessments using anecdotal notes, checklists and portfolios of
student work samples.

The school used a variety of external assessments to benchmark academic outcomes against international
standards. All students in Grades 3 to 10 took ISA tests, recently introduced as part of the National Agenda
parameter, and these provided detailed information about students' reading, mathematics and science
attainment. MAP tests were taken twice a year, providing a clear picture of students' attainment and
progress over time. The Developmental Reading Assessment and focused tests for English language
learners were also used to track progress and inform next steps in learning.

All types of internal and external assessment data were analyzed, used to track the progress of each
student, and fed back into the schools professional learning communities (PLCs) for discussion and
action. However, the school was not fully familiar with the assessments being used, and some of the
analysis was inaccurate. In the Kindergarten, data was used effectively to provide information about ability
groups and the progress of individual children.

In better lessons, especially in the Kindergarten, the data analysis influenced teachers planning and
instruction. However, this was not consistent in elementary, middle and high schools, and the use of
assessment data to set targets for individuals and groups of students was not evident in most classes.

Overall, teachers had an acceptable understanding of students' strengths and weaknesses. In better
lessons, teaching was adapted to meet students' needs. In a majority of lessons, different forms of selfassessment was evident and used on a daily basis. Students were honest in their assessments and
reflected on their strengths and weaknesses. Rubrics were also used across all phases but were not
implemented consistently in all classes. Well-focused challenge was not evident in a majority of classes. In
the Kindergarten, teachers knew every child very well and planned appropriate activities that included
small focus groups, one to one support, and more challenging work for higher achievers. Teachers
feedback was constructive and helped children to set their own goals and weekly targets.

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4. Curriculum

Curriculum design and


implementation

KG

Elementary

Middle

High

Good

Good

Good

Good

The curriculum was coherent, broad and balanced. It closely aligned to Common Core State Standards,
Next Generation Science Standards, Washington State Curriculum Standards and the UAE Ministry of
Education standards for Arabic and Islamic Education. The curriculum provided many opportunities for the
school to add interest and to develop and apply students' knowledge, skills and understanding. These
opportunities were utilized particularly well in science and English.

The curriculum was planned to ensure smooth transitions, especially between the Kindergarten and
elementary phase, where many similar strategies were used effectively by teachers. Across the school,
the curriculum built on previous achievements, ensuring students had no gaps in learning.

The range of curricular choices in the high school strongly resembled a US high school. Students had
required courses but were also able to choose electives to fit their interests and aspirations. Most students
were pleased with the choices offered and enjoyed the opportunity to learn subjects that interested them.

In most classes, cross-curricular links were planned to enrich and extend the subjects being taught.
Activities outside the classroom provided additional opportunities for students to transfer their learning
between subject areas.

The curriculum was reviewed often to ensure that the adopted state standards were well embedded, and
that new strategies and teaching approaches were used appropriately. The school did not undertake
regular and systematic overall reviews, in which the national priorities and student achievement would
be considered and modifications planned.

The school did not yet teach UAE social studies.

Curriculum adaptation

KG

Elementary

Middle

High

Good

Acceptable

Acceptable

Acceptable

Most students benefitted from in-class support although, in many instances, students had difficulty
meeting the lesson objectives because modifications were not provided to meet their specific learning
needs.

The school offered a variety of opportunities to engage students in innovative and creative activities across
curricular areas, including, an annual Science Fair showcasing student projects from Kindergarten to Grade
12; a Pillars of Islam project, for which students raised money for Dubai Cares, and a solar lamps project
conducted by students who raised funds to purchase over two hundred solar lamps and delivered them
to families in Kenya.

Exposure to Emirati culture and appreciation of the UAE values was integrated into a wide range of
activities. These included, a field trip to the Sheikh Mohammed Center for Cultural Understanding, bringing
in Emiratis to advise staff on lessons, assemblies about Eid and re-enactment of the Haj, and the study of
the architecture of Dubai in the school's photography class. For National Day celebrations, students learned
about the use of falcons, watched Arabic dancing, enjoyed tea in a tent, learned about local foods, and
wrote reflections on the day's presentations and the history of the Emirates.

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5. The protection, care, guidance and support of students

Health and safety, including


arrangements for child protection /
safeguarding

KG

Elementary

Middle

High

Outstanding

Outstanding

Outstanding

Outstanding

The school had a clear and detailed child protection policy in place, and made arrangements to ensure
that all parents and students were aware of its procedures. All staff received the appropriate training on
child protection as part of their continuous professional development program. The school had been very
effective in protecting and safeguarding students from all types of abuse, including psychological, physical,
verbal, and online.

The school had highly effective procedures to ensure that students were safe at all times on campus and
on school transport. The school met all legal and regulatory requirements, including emergency evacuation
drills.

The school premises were kept in a fully hygienic and functional condition. The school
operations department kept comprehensive maintenance and incident records, and the clinic kept
detailed health records for all students. The school's medical staff shared student health records with
teachers as needed, to ensure their safety in the classrooms.

The school premises, facilities, and resources were highly suited to the educational needs of all
students, including those with special educational needs. These enabled students to feel safe, at ease,
and highly motivated to learn.

The importance of healthy living was systematically built into the life of the school. The clinic promoted
healthy lifestyles through the health education program it developed in collaboration with the teachers.
The school provided students and parents with excellent advice on healthy living and offered a wide
variety of healthy food choices in the cafeteria.

Care and support

KG

Elementary

Middle

Good

Good

Good

High
Good

Positive relationships amongst staff and students created a calm and purposeful atmosphere for all on
campus. Students were very polite and courteous in their interactions with staff, and with adults in
general.

There was a good level of attendance and punctuality overall, due to a strong management system, and
a campus and atmosphere that engaged students.

Students with special educational needs and disabilities (SEND) were identified on entry whenever
possible. The list of students was proportionately low, at about 5 percent of the school's population,
indicating the need for the school to review its procedures to ensure that all students are identified and
provided with appropriate support. The school did not have procedures to identify students who were
gifted and/or talented.

The school had worked to build a strong team to manage the instruction of students with special
educational needs and disabilities, and to provide guidance and training for classroom teachers. However,
modifications to lessons were not evident in many classes observed. There was no program for gifted
and/or talented students and support was dependent on the skills of individual teachers. Some students
were provided with enriched and augmented lessons, while others did not receive appropriate challenge.

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Individual and group counseling for students in need of personal and emotional support was provided
through the coordination of the learning support team and the school's counselors. Extensive guidance
and support was offered through small and large group discussions, with individual counseling sessions
provided as needed to manage behavior throughout the school day. Life and career guidance began with
interest inventories provided to sixth grade students, and progressed throughout the school.

Provision for students with special educational needs and disabilities (SEND)
The overall effectiveness of provision for students with special
educational needs and disabilities

Acceptable

The leadership of the school promoted an inclusive ethos that was evident across the school. They worked
continuously to improve the quality of their policies and procedures in providing for students with SEND.

The school made use of a range of indicators to identify appropriately the needs of students with SEND,
upon entry and throughout the school. However, the system required further refinement to ensure that
all students with SEND issues were identified and had access to interventions and individual plans they
needed.

The school worked closely with most parents in creating a good learning environment for students.

Since the last inspection, there had been improvement in the quality of lesson modifications and
instructional support provided by SEND staff in pull-out sessions. However, appropriate support from
classroom teachers was not always evident in lessons.

Teachers and SEND staff provided evidence of progress over time for many students with SEND. Some
teachers personalized their teaching strategies to meet the instructional needs of their students with
SEND. However, there were many cases of teaching practices that were less well developed and many
students struggled to make expected rates of progress.

6. Leadership and management


The effectiveness of leadership

Good

School leaders had made substantial improvements in some key areas, for example, in curriculum
alignment. They had introduced new strategies in English which had had a very good impact on student
literacy, especially in the Kindergarten and elementary school.

The senior leaders worked well together to give clear direction to the school. However, due to the shared
roles of the Executive Principal and Head of School there was a lack of clarity about who was the key
leader of the school.

There was a positive, purposeful learning culture throughout the school. Most senior leaders, including
section principals, demonstrated secure knowledge of US curriculum and best practice in teaching and
learning.

Leadership was effectively delegated, and leaders at all levels were focused on improving student
outcomes. However, high expectations were not systematically established or pursued, resulting in a lack
of challenge in some subjects and classes. The school experienced high annual turnover of staff, which
created a lack of continuity in teaching and learning.

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Senior leaders understood the priorities for school improvement but had not always been successful in
making the required changes.

School self-evaluation and improvement planning

Acceptable

Several SEF judgments had been over-optimistically increased without sufficient supporting evidence. The
school had failed to make the necessary improvements in Arabic that were recommended in previous
inspection reports.

There were clear systems and procedures for teacher appraisal. Heads of section knew their teachers'
capacities well, and most judgments appropriately identified effective teaching and learning. However,
there were some instances, notably in Arabic, where appraisal was too positive.

There were detailed action plans, with an observed impact on some key aspects of the school's operations.
However, other areas had been neglected, notably Arabic.

The school had improved significantly in many areas since last year's inspection. However, the lack of
attention to Arabic, a national priority, continued to jeopardize the school's overall quality.

Partnerships with parents and the community

Good

Communication with parents had increased and parents generally felt involved and informed, although
some felt the school did not take note of their views on important issues, such as the need for increased
challenge for higher achieving students. Parents were not well informed about the UAE National Agenda
priorities.

The school used a variety of means to communicate with parents, for example, the BPA bulletin and the
My Learning portal. Most parents felt informed and involved. Some parents of children with special
educational needs and disabilities felt that they were not involved enough in planning for their children's
learning, and parents of children who were gifted and talented were frustrated that the school consistently
failed to meet their children's needs.

Reports to parents were regular and comprehensive, and included both academic achievement and
personal development.

The school had a variety of links with the local, national and global communities such as, partnerships
with other schools within and beyond the GEMS network; raising funds for Dubai Cares; the Week Without
Walls initiative, and the Kenya project.

Governance

Acceptable

The governing board provided structured strategic and operational support through the GEMS 'triad'
system. Although parents were not formally represented on the governing board, the governing board
encouraged school leaders to take parental views into account.

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The governing board met regularly with the school's Executive Principal and Head of School, and held
them both accountable for school improvement. However, responsibilities of the two key leaders were
unclear to some of the school community.

The governing board had disregarded KHDA directives relating to the Head of School not being approved
as the key educational leader, and the Executive Principal needing to be onsite five days per week. Student
attainment and progress in Arabic as a first language had declined. This was due to
inappropriate application of the curriculum, inconsistent quality of teaching and ineffective assessment.
This had been a recommendation in the previous two inspection reports and the governing board had
failed to take action to address this. The sparsely resourced library and limited ICT provision did not meet
the needs of students, nor match the schools stated goal of improving students' achievement against
international benchmark tests.

Management, staffing, facilities and resources

Good

The day-to-day management of the school's operations were effective and efficient.

The school had many strong teachers, appropriately deployed to have a positive impact on students
learning. However, several staff had multiple roles and were overloaded, and the continually high annual
turnover of staff created a constant recruitment challenge for school leaders.

The campus and classrooms were attractive, spacious and highly conducive to learning. Several areas had
been skillfully converted to optimize teaching space.

Most classrooms and other learning areas were well-resourced. However, the library and ICT resources
did not match the otherwise high quality provision, and Arabic classrooms lacked resources beyond the
basic curriculum documents.

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The views of the parents, teachers and students


Before the inspection, the views of the parents, teachers and senior secondary students were surveyed. Key
messages from each group were considered during the inspection and these helped to form inspection
judgements. A summary of the survey statistics and comments from those who responded to the survey follows:

Responses to the surveys

Responses received
Parents*

Number
2015-2016

141

2014-2015

162

Teachers
22
Students
2
*The number of responses from parents is based on the number of families.

The few parents who responded about Arabic gave very mixed views about the competence of teachers
and quality of progress reports.

Almost all parents felt their children were making good progress in English, mathematics and science.

Almost all parents and teachers believed that students enjoyed school and were kept safe.

A minority of teachers did not feel students gained a strong sense of Islamic values.

A minority of teachers said that the school did not listen to or act on their views.

If you have a concern or wish to comment on any aspect of this report, you should contact
inspection@khda.gov.ae

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