[Renamed, update] The Glenelg School Abu Dhabi review

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[Renamed, update] The Glenelg School Abu Dhabi review

Postby shawarma » 04 Jan 2009, 15:09

The Glenelg School in Abu Dhabi - information page.

[edit]There might be a Glenelg School teaching job scam to watch out for (similar to some other Abu Dhabi school hoaxes). Sounds like it's not something from the school, but someone else or another organisation claiming to be from Glenelg School. Contact the school directly to confirm if any job offers you receive are legitimate. If you don't, you are unlikely to get a job, and likely to lose money. Typically these scams ask you to send money for visa processing fees, which is illegal under UAE law.[/edit]

A new American curriculum school which opened in September 2008 with segregated campuses for male and female students, unusual for western expat schools in the UAE but not for schools with predominantly Asian or Arab students. One description said Glenelg (GSAD) was intended to be a school for Emirati students, but the school website says they accept other nationalities also. School might expand to primary level.

If anyone knows more about the following, reply here with updated information.

  • Description of school location: Between Abu Dhabi Golf Course and the Petroleum Institute, after Al Maqta Bridge when leaving Abu Dhabi.
  • Executive Body/Owner: Is ADNOC? Petroleum Institute (PI)? Both? Neither?
  • Principal / Headteacher name: Kofi Agyeman according to the GSAD website, but Ollis Miller was appointed as Head of School according to Search Associates information?
  • School is profit making or non-profit:
  • School day start and finish times for students:
  • Number of students (approx): Started with about 400 students in total? Has facilities for up to 800 (400 girls, 400 boys)
  • Nationality of most students, or nationality breakdown: Mostly Emirati?
  • Number of teaching staff (approx):
  • Nationality of most teaching staff, or nationality breakdown:
  • Email: No general email address found.
  • Qualifications offered: Advanced Placement (AP), not clear if currently offered or expected to be offered in the future
  • Teacher salary range per month (and details of package - accommodation, flights, medical): The PI pays well so presumably Glenelg does also? In excess of 20,000 dhs per month?
  • Any other comments which would be helpful for students, teachers, and/or parents:
Please use the forum for questions, not the PM system.
Posts: 3451
Joined: 27 Sep 2007, 00:39

Re: The Glenelg School Abu Dhabi

Postby UmmRashid » 13 May 2010, 15:02

It's a non-profit school.

Teachers are on ADNOC payroll.

Great school for students who take their studies seriously.
Posts: 3
Joined: 13 May 2010, 14:58

Re: The Glenelg School Abu Dhabi

Postby UmmRashid » 13 May 2010, 15:05

School days end at 3:15 but they are required to take after school activities 4 days a week.

Students are picked up at 4pm except on Thurs, 3:15pm.
Posts: 3
Joined: 13 May 2010, 14:58

Re: The Glenelg School Abu Dhabi

Postby UmmRashid » 13 May 2010, 15:11

ALOT of homework.

majority of teachers are western, with the exception of arabic and islamic teachers

majority of students are emirati

Teachers seem very happy to me (my daughter attends the school and i have enrolled my son for next school year)


We are access to our daughter's grades on-line and can communicate with her teachers on-line as well.
Posts: 3
Joined: 13 May 2010, 14:58

Re: The Glenelg School Abu Dhabi

Postby Be Careful » 03 Aug 2010, 19:41

One of the faculty who resigned this year is still trying to receive approximately $25,000 due. The teacher fully completed the contract and did all that was asked....
Be Careful

Re: The Glenelg School Abu Dhabi

Postby Um Sami » 15 Oct 2010, 22:08

I would like to know more about this school? is it only for emirati or other nationality? nd is it only for ADNOC staff children or for public? nd can they accept KG boys without complicated? nd do they accept kids from Abu Dhabi whom they lived in downtown city not near school?
Please people who have enough information about all my questions and more if available, kindly provide me and I will be appreciated....
Um Sami

Re: The Glenelg School Abu Dhabi

Postby bob » 08 Dec 2010, 06:25

The Glenelg School of abu dhabi is a low tuition non profit highly academic school. Students in the elemetary go from 8am until 2:30pm. Elementary school has a faculty of about 100 teachers with about 700 students grades kg1 to 5. All nationalities can be accepted but majority is emirate. Students from inside the city can be accepted as well.

Teachers report for duty from 7:30am until 4:00pm. Compensation is very good.

Re: The Glenelg School Abu Dhabi

Postby Laura » 02 Mar 2011, 16:53

The school is poorly run and the staff are not supported or happy with management. The teaching staff are excellent but are not allowed to teach the Western way but more the old fashion way of chalk and talk and paperwork and textbooks. The school looks all shiny and new but it is not safe and some areas of the school are not build with children in mind especially the KG section and there have been some safety issues.

They pretend to run a highly academic school but it is not up to the standards of Western schools in the UAE or at home in America as it doesn't support practices and strategies we use in Western schools, it is very textbook heavy. The children in primary have different teachers for each subject which is nothing like education in the West, as these children do not experience the stability of having one teacher.

All these problems are not teething problems of a new school but bad management. Staff are employed by association/wusta. Admin and management are friends and relatives of the head therefore they are not qualified for the positions and many have no knowledge of how to do their job. It is a mess. The worst run school I have ever encountered. The head does not have any experience or qualifications running a primary school and has very bad management skills. She is a dictator and is narcissistic and staff are scared of her and any ideas or offers to better the school are seen as negative towards the school. It is a very negative school due to admin and management. The head does not care about the students well rounded education, just about how her school looks creating too much paperwork and not enough hands on real life experiences. IT IS NOT A WESTERN RUN SCHOOL, it is run by Lebanese and there way which is not like any western school I have worked in in the Middle East or in my own country of America.

I would send my child to Pearl or Al Kabarait.

Re: The Glenelg School Abu Dhabi review

Postby Sara » 21 Mar 2011, 00:49

This woman has hit the nail on the head! I agree 100% with everything that she has written. The school advertises itself as a western school with American curriculum, but this could not be further from the truth. The administration and much of the staff are Lebanese and they have a very different philosophy of education than do Americans. Every decision that is made is the opposite of what would make sense to an American educator. The staff is treated badly and in general are very unhappy. The teachers are paid well, but work very long hours in return. This job just goes to show that money can't buy happiness!

Re: The Glenelg School Abu Dhabi review

Postby bk » 01 May 2011, 22:32

Any info on how much they pay the teachers. What kind of benefits, and what is housing like? thanks

Re: The Glenelg School Abu Dhabi review

Postby trinity » 24 May 2011, 18:10

Have just been offered a position at the Glenelg Primary school in Abu Dhabi. It seems like a great contract. Any teachers who have experience at the Primary school there- what is your opinion?

Re: The Glenelg School Abu Dhabi review

Postby sentarla » 27 May 2011, 13:00

Not everything that glitters is gold. If you call yourself a good teacher, don't take the job.

Re: The Glenelg School Abu Dhabi review

Postby woof woof » 30 May 2011, 19:34

Been teaching for a good few years in the Middle East. A good teacher can survive many things and still be a good teacher.
woof woof

Re: The Glenelg School Abu Dhabi review

Postby Me too » 07 Jun 2011, 05:31

trinity wrote:Have just been offered a position at the Glenelg Primary school in Abu Dhabi.

Me too but wont sign for 3 years. 2 is my max. You never know, we may meet up.
Me too

Re: The Glenelg School Abu Dhabi review

Postby nonameformee » 10 Jun 2011, 10:32

I, too, have been offered a position at the elementary school there. Any further information would be appreciated.

Re: The Glenelg School Abu Dhabi review

Postby Mr Chips » 14 Jun 2011, 03:54

Try to speak to western staff who have worked at the school for more than 6 months.

If the school delivered on half of what they promise either in rhetoric or in their contracts, it would be a terrific place to work and teach. Most students and parents a joy to work with. Administration ruthless, ignorant and toxic. Don't expect to have your contract (or your expertise)honored.

Caveat magister!
Mr Chips

Be Careful

Postby Former Faculty Member » 20 Jun 2011, 22:38

As a former faculty member, I can only concur with the comments above.

There is a reason that Western teachers leave so frequently: she is the Head of School.

Be very careful if you choose to work there and expect to have the freedom to express your opinions.
Former Faculty Member

Re: The Glenelg School Abu Dhabi review

Postby Concerned » 29 Jun 2011, 21:39

[edit]Text removed by moderator[/edit] As a former employee, I would say to any parent or staff-RUN. Adnoc has let this head of school have to much power without any knowledge of education or leadership and is creating a shell of a school without any heart. If you are not her friend you will be subject to humiliation threats and lies. The students are unhappy and most wish they could leave. This is a a school with some american textbooks, nothing else american about it. As long as the head and her friends and family run the school, it will be a toxic place for anyone to be part of. glenelg is the worst run school I have ever encountered in my teaching career. glenelg employees are not happy.glenelg students are subjected to bad teaching by non qualified teachers.glenelg staff that are any good get out get fired.glenelg curriculum is not american.glenelg head management behaves like a dictator tying the hands of any good teachers and allowing what she thinks are good teachers to be in charge regardless of their knowledge education or leadership.a company like adnoc should know better but whatever wasta is going on allow this bad leadership to go on. [edit]Text removed by moderator[/edit]

Re: The Glenelg School Abu Dhabi review

Postby trinity » 10 Aug 2011, 01:16

Anyone currently set to teach at Glenelg Primary school for September 2011?

Re: The Glenelg School Abu Dhabi review

Postby jdmike » 20 Aug 2011, 04:10

So they do not honor a contract? Explain please.

Someone isnt getting paid? Please explain.

What does the classroom look like? Functions like teaching style, kids behavior, planning time......what kind of accountability is here?

What are teachers are measured by....standards?

What does a teacher need to do in order to strive and do well here?

Thanks ahead of time......


Re: The Glenelg School Abu Dhabi review

Postby hemavel » 25 Aug 2011, 11:40


i want to admit my son in this school. we are basically from india. pl. suggest.

Re: The Glenelg School Abu Dhabi review

Postby Mr Chips » 16 Sep 2011, 07:36

In reply to jdmike, I offer the following answers.

Benefits offered in contracts have been denied to staff members after they start work. All who started at GSAD in 2009 had their wages cut after they had accepted contracts at much higher rates of pay, but it was too late for most of them to return to their countries of origin. All those leaving found out that the company would not pay the removal costs promised in their contracts. The school flouts UAE law by failing to pay staff before they leave the country and has informed them that “due to errors in calculation” the payment amount would be less than the school promised and agreed to in writing .

Obligatory government contracts are never shown, or even mentioned to staff. Perhaps this is because they stipulate working hours for teachers in the UAE. GSAD hours exceed this amount. The school exploits its status as an ADNOC spin-off to avoid all accountability under national law, so that staff have no recourse to the law.

Classrooms are well-equipped with latest technology. Although you will have to beg a security guard and sign a special register if you would like a pen for the white-board.

Students are much like anywhere else; some tricky, most lovely, some others: superb. Parents, terrific - just feel sorry for them that they are being fooled by an incompetent woman who cares more about her own prestige than about educating their children. Her insecurity may stem from not having a Bachelor's degree in Teaching or in Education, let alone a Masters, as required by ADEC regulations for her position.

Teachers are assessed by how well they kow-tow to the "Headmaster" (which includes carefully avoiding correcting her appalling English). Teachers are also rewarded for adjusting students’ grades so that no student fails and the children of VIP families remain on Bs and As.

To strive and do well, the quality of your teaching is unimportant. The headmaster has said “I don’t care how good a teacher they are, if they do not have the right attitude, I do not want them here”. Although most people would agree that ”the right attitude” is very important in any position; it is just that this administrator’s concept of the right attitude is the stereotype of that of any other tyrant: obey me unquestioningly, even at the cost of professional standards, and students’ best interests. This person is not interested in debates on any topic related to teaching methods or developments in education as it exposes her ignorance. Spying for her is requested of all trusted staff, and this will be key to your survival at GSAD. Those who decline to spy on their colleagues are labeled “negative”, demoted and pressured to leave.

So, in advance JD, I advise you smile constantly at the head, praise her loudly amongst colleagues, especially those she has brought with her from her previous school (where her position was top Hall Monitor and special friend of the regional director of that franchise) and try not to snigger too loudly [edit by moderator]comment removed, too personal[/edit], this will also get you a long, long way at the school.

I commiserate if you really are a serious teacher about to work in this school. If so, clearly it is best avoided if you wish to practice your profession in an honorable fashion. GSAD is no place for those who value education and students.
Mr Chips

Re: The Glenelg School Abu Dhabi review

Postby notagoodschool » 08 Oct 2011, 13:06

I am currently a teacher at the Glenelg School of Abu Dhabi. This is my second year working there and I have to ask myself daily why I gave this school a second chance! It is a very poorly run school and extremely disorganized. There is very little support for staff members and there is no room for teaching outside of text books and worksheets. Over these two years, the school has added an elementary campus in Ruwais and Madinat Zayed. They have expanded before they could even get what they have right, which created even more disorganization and chaos. The pay is good and the benefits are great, but the hours you put into working there ends up not being worth it. MANY people, including me, working there are unhappy and 13 people ran from the school last year. That should give you a good indication of what the school is about and how it is run. Overall, I would suggest that if anyone in the future wanted to come and work at this school I wouldn't recommend it. It hinders the growth of a teachers career and you are basically a puppet being pulled by strings.

Re: The Glenelg School Abu Dhabi review

Postby Friend of Hinckley » 25 Oct 2011, 03:28

As a former employee, I agree with the comments above: the building is beautiful, and the curriculum is Western/American, but the main problem is the Head of School.

If you are considering working at GSAD, be sure you are going for the money. There is no other reason to take the position....
Friend of Hinckley

Re: The Glenelg School Abu Dhabi review

Postby ccharls » 09 Jan 2012, 23:03

I have heard that the bad headmaster of this school had retired !

wish this school improve!
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Joined: 09 Jan 2012, 22:58


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