Welcome to the Secondary School
The Secondary School education provision is based on the National Curriculum for England (NCfE) and incorporating the UAE Ministry of Education’s (MoE) curriculum in Arabic, Islamic Studies and Social Studies. The school is set up over Key Stages 3, 4 and 5.
We have an excellent staff body composed of experienced leaders and dynamic staff who bring energy and enthusiasm coupled with the latest innovation and development in pedagogy.
Our secondary school is very diverse with more than 70 nationalities reflecting the rich and diverse international community that underpins all that GFM embodies.
The School Day starts from 7:40am and finishes at 2:pm (Monday to Thursday) and from 7:40am to 11:40am on Fridays.
Prayer rooms are available during lunchtime for Muslim students to use in accordance with the Dubai Health Authority Covid-19 protocols for safe use of prayer rooms.
Key Stage 3 (Year 7 to Year 9. Students typically aged 11 -14 years old)
This begins in Year 7 with students making a successful transition from GFM Primary School in Year 6. We also welcome warmly students joining us from other Primary schools in the vicinity and demand for Year 7 is very high. Please refer to the link here for our admissions page.
Students enjoy a broad and balanced curriculum with opportunities to have enrichment and develop skills further supported by the High Performance Learning (HPL) framework.
Subjects studied across Key Stage 3 include Arabic*, Art, Computing, English, French, Geography, History, Mathematics, Music, Physical Education, Science, Food Technology, Textiles, and Moral and Social Studies
In addition, students who are registered as Muslim, will study Islamic studies as directed by the Ministry of Education (MoE) requirements.
* Arabic language is compulsory in all schools in the UAE. This is pre-determined by the UAE MoE criteria. Students based on their nationality will study Arabic First Language (Arabic A) or Arabic as a Second Language (Arabic B). Special approval from the Dubai Education Regulator, KHDA (Knowledge and Human Development Authority) is needed for any change to Arabic A and B and vice versa.
In additional to the core ‘taught’ curriculum, all Key Stage 3 students participate in weekly timetabled Enrichment lesson. This is an important opportunity to develop skills outside of the national curriculum, learn new hobbies and boost their well-being.. In addition, further opportunities are provided both within curriculum time and before school, during lunch-time and after school.
Key Stage 4 (Year 10 to Year 11. Students typically aged 14 -16 years old)
At the end of In Year 9, students make selection for their choice of study in Year 10 for formal qualifications at the end of Year 11. Students will study at least seven GCSEs/IGCSEs/
These are two-year courses based on the British qualification: General Certificate in Secondary Education (GCSE) but may also incorporate the IGCSE (International GCSE) depending on the curriculum leadership plan for specific subjects.
Both GCSEs and IGCSEs are Level 2 qualifications. They are the equivalent to what many used to refer to as O levels. They are recognised by all leading schools, colleges and universities locally and internationally. They reflect the rigour needed to study further Level 3 qualifications i.e. A-levels and this allows access to leading universities around the world.
For selected students, we offer a vocational pathway which is less focused on academic end of year examinations, and instead focused on continuous assessment. These qualifications are known as BTEC (Business and Technology Education Council) and IBTEC (International Business and Technology Education Council) delivered by Edexcel qualification board.
The compulsory subjects to be studied as GCSE are English, Mathematics and Science. Some students will also be able to study English Literature.
Science will be learned either ‘triple’ Science or ‘combined’ (Double) Science. At GFM, we are proud to enable all students to study all aspects of Science ensuring no deficit in scientific thinking and understanding. Therefore, all three disciplines: Biology. Chemistry and Physics are equally valued as either 3 GCSE qualifications or a ‘Double Award’ worth 2 GCSE qualifications.
In addition, as in Key Stage 3, students in Key Stage 4, will also study the MoE curriculum in Arabic, Islamic Studies, and Moral and Social Studies.
All students will also study Physical and Wellbeing Education (PWE).
Optional GCSEs, where students choose based on professional guidance from the qualified staff as well as personal preference by the student/family help determine the choice of study. Our Director of Aspirations will also offer input especially around careers to help ensure choices do not limit or hinder future career ambitions.
Our current options are demand dependent but offer a broad range of skills development and knowledge acquisition:
Art, Business, Computer Science, Drama, Economics, French, Geography, History, ICT, Music, PE, Psychology, ICT, Sociology, and Food Technology
Level 2 IBTECs in Sport, Applied Sciences, Art, Business and IT are also available.
As the school further expands, yet more exciting choices will be available.
Key Stage 5
In September 2022 we welcomed our first cohort to our newly opened and purpose built Key Stage 5 provision (commonly known as ‘Sixth Form’ or ‘Post-16’ in British curriculum schools).
Key Stage 5 is for students in Years 12 and 13 studying either A Levels or level 3 BTECs. As the school continues its expansion we will be offering a greater number of courses to a greater number of students.
What is IGCSE?
GCSE stands for the (International) General Certificate of Secondary Education and is a highly regarded qualification across the world.
GCSE courses are renowned for developing vital educational skills, including recall of knowledge, oral skills, problem-solving, initiative, teamwork and investigative skills. The resulting qualification provides a foundation for higher-level courses, such as A and AS Levels, the Advanced International Certificate of Education and the International Baccalaureate.
What level are GCSEs?
These exams are at Level 2 and are regarded as preparation for A Level exams at Level 3.
Where are IGCSEs accepted and recognized?
GCSE is a high-profile qualification. It has the same value in admitting students to institutes of further education and employment as the UK equivalent GCSE and GCE ‘O’ Level.
GCSE has an excellent reputation among international schools worldwide. GCSEs are recognized as a reliable record of attainment which counts towards entry to universities and colleges around the world.
Are GCSEs accepted for University Entrance?
Having good passes in GCSE examinations certainly enhances a student’s university application. Passes in English First Language and Mathematics GCSE are mandatory for most university courses in the United Kingdom; passes in additional subjects are desirable.