Private Education in the Absence of a Public Option: The Cases of the United Arab Emirates and Qatar

  • Natasha Y Ridge Sheikh Saud bin Saqr Al Qasimi Foundation for Policy Research
  • Soha Shami Sheikh Saud bin Saqr Al Qasimi Foundation for Policy Research
  • Susan M. Kippels Sheikh Saud bin Saqr Al Qasimi Foundation for Policy Research
Keywords: private education, profit, access and equity, mixed methods, Gulf region

Abstract

In the face of rising demand for private schooling in the United Arab Emirates (UAE) and Qatar, a lack of affordable schooling options, monopolistic behavior of private education providers, and unpredictable government regulations have created a complex and unequal education sector. This research employs a mixed methods comparative approach to explore the ways in which private education providers navigate the regulatory schooling environments and assess the impact on education stakeholders in the UAE and Qatar. The study finds that there are considerable socioeconomic differences in terms of who has access to schooling and that a growing for-profit education sector may be deepening existing inequities in both countries, leaving poorer expatriate families only able to access low-quality education or in the worst cases, unable to access education at all. The promise of non-profit providers as a viable alternative to ensure access is explored. The full text of the article can be found at 10.18275/fire201603021076
Published
2018-12-06
How to Cite
Ridge, N. Y., Shami, S., & Kippels, S. M. (2018). Private Education in the Absence of a Public Option: The Cases of the United Arab Emirates and Qatar. FIRE: Forum for International Research in Education, 3(2). https://doi.org/10.18275/fire201603021076