Mariya International Schools (MIS) was founded in 2007 in the city of Jubail, Eastern Province of the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia. The schools was initiated to cater for the massively growing Expatriate Community of Jubail Industrial City. The beginnings of the schools were really humble. Only 43 students with a handful of teachers and admin staff, six rooms in a building and a small play area, were the constituents of the schools. Once the schools was licensed by the ministry of education, KSA, it started to grow exponentially. In the last three years, the schools has relocated in the newly built campus consisting of three huge buildings covering an area of over 5000 sq. Meters. According to the Ministry of Education KSA regulations, there are separate buildings for BOYS, Girls and ADMIN sections. Each of the boys’ and girls’ section building was designed and built to provide ergonomically safe and healthy environment for the students. Over 64 classrooms, 4 Science Labs, 4 Computers’ Labs, Library, Audio-Visual (AV) rooms, 2 indoor play areas and 2 outdoor play areas are the main facilities in the schools. The schools has a huge, all indoors, Multi-purpose hall which is shared by both of the sections. A huge size outdoor playground in the Girls’ section and a smaller outdoor playground for the boys’ section is another feature of the schools. Football (soccer) is the main sport within the schools, yet physical education, basketball and cricket are also promoted and encouraged among the students.
To ensure the safety of the whole student population and the staff, a state of the art Closed Circuit Television Camera system is also installed. Manned security entrance-exit system is also operated to enhance the safety aspect. 60% of the student population uses schools owned and maintained Transport system that consists of 35 brand new buses that cover the whole of the city. Almost 90% of the staff, also, commutes via this transport system. The KG students are provided with BUS assistants in every trip that they have, to ensure their safety, to and from the schools.
During the last three years, a lot has been achieved in MIS. Firstly, the NEW schools premises has been designed and built according the needs of the schools. The whole building has been designed to make sure that the environment provides the safest and easiest day to day running. Health & safety and information Technology infrastructure and administration strategies have influenced the design. Furthermore, a comprehensive and achievable schools improvement plan has been formulated and initiated that covers all aspects of improvement in education quality e.g. the syllabus has been scrutinized and adjusted entirely on the guidelines of British Cambridge international Examination (CIE) frameworks, across the board. The books and publications used to teach the syllabus were examined and only publishers recommended by CIE were contacted to supply them. Also, the schools applied for and received Association from CIE and British Council. The project based learning methodology applied within MIS was further enhanced to incorporate more Student Centered Learning. The Academics department designed and implemented, an entire new lesson planning strategy in which student centered learning was at the pinnacle. To tackle the issue of locally hiring teaching faculty, this was under the influence of the constant relocation of the staff, resulting in retaining the staff, policy was designed and implemented to hire foreign staff under the authorization of Ministry of Labour and Ministry and Education. This staff would be sponsored by the schools and will guarantee a prolonged contract to ensure the standards of teaching. Yet more focus was given on the development of Digital / Technological learning environment within the schools.
For the first time in the schools’s history, external standardized exams were conducted within the schools under the supervision of Cambridge International Examination, known as the Cambridge Primary Checkpoints. These exams were conducted on the 12-13 years old students (the end of the primary stage schoolsing according to Cambridge International Examination board). The proficiency in the subjects of English, Mathematics and science was measured by the compilation and comparison of the results of the checkpoints and internal schools standardized exams. MIS also applied for accreditation with AdvancED and after the formal application and the first readiness review, achieved CANDIDATE status, undergoing SELF-ASSESSMENT and INTERNAL REVIEW.
In the next three years, the Schools improvement Plan will be fully implemented encompassing all departmental and educational strategies that will be according to AdvancED assurances, standards and the newly introduced Schools Quality Factors. Special attention will be given to the complete transposition of Teacher centered learning with the Student Centered Learning. Digital learning will supersede any other type of learning within the schools as a huge special budget is allocated to reform the whole schools digital technology infrastructure. SMART boards are replacing the Chalk Boards in the whole schools. Over the years, this cutting-edge technology has proved popular for students of all ages. The interactive board turns a typical classroom into a fun learning environment. It enriches classrooms in several ways by providing hands on collaboration and creating the perfect learning setting. MIS schools improvement plan enforces that ALL classrooms should be equipped with SMART boards; all teachers will be trained in using these boards so they encourage all student population to adopt the digital inquiry method using these boards.
We welcome any suggestions, feedback and questions from you. Your opinions are of the highest value to us. Together, we shall make Mariya International Schools, one of the Best schools in our region.