In the school year of 2005/2006, six Emirati children were accepted to GISAD for the first time on the basis of the H.H. Sheikh Mohammend bin Zayed scholarship. Since then GISAD has been accepting Emirati students on a yearly basis and we have had two graduating classes with Emirati students achieving the Abitur. An integration program was established which meant to enable an easier transition for non-German native speaking students. In addition to the separate “German as a Foreign Language” (DaF) lessons, the most important component was the introduction of an admissions test and an interview with the parents to evaluate the suitability of the children and the willingness of the parents to support them in learning a new language. Meanwhile, almost 50 Emirati children participate in the integration program.
Tailored DaF lessons are given and homework supervision is offered as part of the program. Emirati school children also show great interest in participating in working groups. The care of the Emirati children and their parents as well as the selection process is carried out in close cooperation with the Abu Dhabi Education Council. The school management decides on the admission of the Emirati children. Since the school year of 2007/2008, GISAD employs an integration officer whose main task is to coordinate the care of Emirati children and their parents and to expand the integration program in line with new requirements. DaF lessons are chargeable for all applicants.
In recent years, a trustful cooperation with the Abu Dhabi Education Council has been established. There is great interest on the behalf of the school community and the Emirati community to generate a success of the integration program and thus contribute to expanding the knowledge of foreign languages and cultures to Emirati children and parents alike.
Our Integration Officer is Ms Ouafa Abadi. You can reach her at firstname.lastname@example.org, Tel.: +971 2 666 8668 Ext. 2.