Admission & Fees
Welcome to Durham School for Girls Admissions. We are happy to know that you are interested in joining our Durham Family. Due to high demand for places, please make sure you fill in an application form as soon as possible in order for us to arrange an assessment and interview if we have places or to join the waiting list and secure you place for future vacancies.
Durham School for Girls Doha is an All-Girls British school based in Doha, Qatar and is a sister school of Durham School UK.
Offers of places are based on a judgment about whether a child will thrive in our educational environment. Thus, the later the stage in a child’s school career when an application is made, the more likely it is that there will be a requirement for existing proficiency in spoken and written English.
Children may be admitted to any year group provided that there is space, though entry into either Year 11 or Year 13 needs to be approached with caution since these years are the second phases of two-year courses.
For the purposes of entry applicants’ ages are calculated according to the English National curriculum custom, with a 1st September date watershed. In cases where applicants apply from a different education system or country, the year group on entry will be considered sequentially according to their previous education system.
In exceptional circumstances, an applicant may have fallen behind in his/her education due to illness, time spent abroad, etc. In such a case, the School may offer a place in a year lower than the applicant’s age would normally imply. Parents will need to sign a letter saying that they consent to this. Once a girl is placed in a lower year group, they will then not be able to skip a year in the future and return to their age range class.
Parents or guardians will be consulted before such an offer is made, but the decision as to the appropriate year for the applicant, taking into account all the relevant circumstances, is a matter for the Head, whose decision is final.
This policy and its procedures have been authorised by the Board of Durham School for Girls Doha. The Board delegates authority to the Heads of the schools to identify applicants whose academic and other abilities appear to match the ethos and standards of the schools, and whose personal qualities suggest that they have the potential to contribute sufficiently to the school community and benefit from the many opportunities that are offered.
This policy is for guidance and will be adapted by the school from time to time as circumstances require.
Most sections of this policy apply to all Durham Schools. The sections covering procedures vary slightly between schools.
The British Curriculum is a highly structured curriculum designed to meet all students’ needs—challenging brighter children and providing support to those who need additional help through differentiated teaching and learning activities.
It focuses on a breadth of knowledge across various subjects, guiding children towards globally-recognised GCSE & A Level examinations. Throughout the British Curriculum, there is a focus on core subjects, such as maths, English, and science. As children progress through their education, they are able to narrow subject areas, which allows them to excel in areas in which they have higher interest and ability.
In the Primary years, the curriculum remains as broad and balanced as possible, with a strong focus on child-centred learning. Teachers continually assess and adjust plans as they teach to meet the needs of their pupils.
The British Curriculum structures learning in a way that guides students through a variety of subjects including not only ‘core’ subjects such as maths, science, and literature, but also the arts, humanities, and more. Starting in the early years, students focus on the fundamentals of their subjects, and as students progress, the curriculum dives deeper into these subjects, exploring not only the more nuanced and complex aspects of the subjects, but also how they relate to other areas of study.
Unlike other systems, the British curriculum planning is not fixed. Teachers adjust their plans to meet student needs, understanding what must be covered by the end of the key stage.
The British system is organised in well-defined blocks known as ‘Key Stages’. The first stage is the Early Years for students from 2 years old through 5 years old. Once the student enters primary level, they start with Key Stage 1 (KS1), from ages 5 to 7, before moving on to KS2, which lasts from age 7 to 11.
After completing the primary Key Stages, students begin the secondary stages with KS3 and KS4, which are for ages 11-14 and ages 14-16, respectively. Students who plan to continue to university may then begin the pre-university KS5, where they will study from age 16 to 18. Since the stages are explicitly defined and students are assessed at the end of each Key Stage, the stages provide a simple, clear overview of the progress a student has made.
Throughout the admissions procedure Durham School for Girl’s policy is to ensure the best interests of the pupil educationally. To this end:
All prospective pupils must undergo a selection process which varies according to their age (see information below on the different sections within the school).
The selection process is to be carried out with the full knowledge and participation of the Heads of the appropriate feeder schools (if appropriate).
Following this selection process, admission to the school requires the approval of the Head of Durham School for Girls.
Once an application is in process Durham School for Girls Doha may contact the child’s current school for a confidential reference.
The school reserves the right to refuse admission to candidates whom it considers will not benefit from the educational programme offered by Durham school for Girls.
When allocating places, the Head may, at her discretion, also take the following into account (in no particular order):
a) academic performance and potential
b) pupil’s ability to offer excellence within a particular facet of the school’s extracurricular programme
c) pupils with sisters in the school
d) children with one or both English speaking parents
e) children from families who are relocating to Qatar
f) children of former Durham School for Girls or Durham School UK pupils
However, children’s admission to the school is subject to the selection process for the appropriate age group and the availability of places in the appropriate year group.
Entrance to the Infant Department and Key Stage 1 requires an interview with the parents and the child. Where this is not possible or where appropriate, reports from previous schools or Pre- Nursery should be presented.
If it is felt that the child is not progressing adequately even by the time she is in Reception, parents may be asked to find alternative schooling for their child at the end of the Foundation Stage.
Pupils with no prior knowledge of English may be accepted into Nursery and Reception classes and initially are not required to have any extra language support.
Pupils for Years 1 and 2 with no prior knowledge of English can only be accepted if agreed provision is made for an English as an Additional Language Programme (EAL) and parents should expect to be liable for the incurred costs. The duration of the EAL course will be decided by the school. Pupils are not required to have previous knowledge of Arabic.
Entrance to Key Stage 2 requires school reports from previous years and a CAT4 baseline assessment which may take place in their current school for pupils from international schools abroad.
Pupils with no/little prior knowledge of English must agree to a programme of EAL as recommended by the school and parents should expect to be liable for the incurred costs. The duration of the EAL course will be decided by the school.
New pupils are not required to have any previous knowledge of Arabic. Pupils joining the school with a low level or no prior knowledge of the language may receive Arabic as a Second Language classes.
Entrance to the Secondary Department requires school reports from previous years and a CAT4 baseline assessment which may take place in their current school for pupils from international schools abroad. The reports must show consistently favourable progress academically, behaviorally and in terms of effort.
Confidential references are normally sought from the pupil’s current school regarding their academic record and behavior.
All pupils applying for entry to the Secondary Department should preferably have a good level of English and have attended a UK or a British international school. Pupils with little prior knowledge of English must agree to a programme of EAL as recommended by the school and parents should expect to be liable for the incurred costs. The duration of the EAL course will be decided by the school.
Pupils who leave Durham School for Girls Doha for any reason will not be automatically accepted if they wish to return.
Pupils who wish to return after a year should reapply and follow the normal Admissions procedure for their age group.
If a parent plans to remove their child from Durham School for Girls Doha for a whole academic year (e.g. to spend Year 8 in an English boarding preparatory school), then the school can only guarantee readmission via the payment of holding fee of QAR 5000 per term.
All candidates for admission will be treated equally, irrespective of their or their parents’, race, religion or belief, or any disability.
The register of admissions is held securely in electronic form by the Head of Admissions. Paper copies of admissions documentation are also kept securely.
Admissions documentation for candidates who are not admitted to the school is kept for 6 months and then destroyed. Names and contact details of all parents who seek admission to the school are kept electronically for an indefinite period owing to the possibility of another approach to the school at a later date.
Durham School for Girls Doha has some facilities for the disabled and good access and will do all that is reasonable to comply with its legal and moral responsibilities under Qatari law.
Parents of a child who has any disability or special educational needs must provide the Head of Admissions with full written details (including a copy of all reports prepared by an Educational Psychologist and/or other appropriate specialist where available) when registering for admission. A Disability Needs Assessment Form is available from the Head of Admissions.
This information is required so that, in the case of any child with particular needs, the School can assess those needs and endeavour to make sure that facilities can be provided adequately for those needs throughout the admissions process.
The School will consult with parents and their medical advisers about the adjustments which can reasonably be made for the child, subject to the School’s Accessibility Plan and usual routines and budget constraints, both during the admission process and later as a pupil.
Where the School agrees to support the provision of additional services, such as the use of extra staff or auxiliary aids, parents or guardians will be charged for these at a level that reasonably reflects the cost to the school of providing the service or facility.
Registration for the first term, for students resident or transferring within Qatar, will be closed 15th October;
After the 15th October parents must seek permission from the Ministry of Education;
Registration for students applying from overseas will close end of January;
The cut-off date for age at registration is 30th Sept.
Students transferring from one school to another must be placed in the year group following on from the year group that the student was enrolled in at his/her previous school. The guideline for transfer will be the Ministry of Education and Higher Education ‘Guidelines for the admission of students into private schools in Qatar’.
If a place is offered for students applying from overseas, an end of year school report attested by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs in Qatar must be submitted.
For entry to Durham School for Girls Doha, once a place has been offered parents are required to confirm the reservation by making the corresponding payments as set out below:
QR 500 Interview and Assessment Fee
This stage involves a family interview where all your questions will be answered, and we find out more about you. This is followed by an assessment of your daughter(s) to assess their learning style and cognitive abilities. The CAT 4 is used for children entering year 3 and above and for the younger children we use activities to assess their development measured in line with the Ministry of Education UK’s expected milestones. The Interview and the Assessment are held at the school and carried out by qualified admissions or teaching staff.
QR 2500 Registration Fee
This is a non-refundable fee paid for registering the student in the school after she gets accepted.
QR 2500 Deposit against school Fee
Once an offer has been made, verbally or in writing, a deposit against the first year’s fees must be made to secure the place. This payment should be made within 14 days of receiving the offer. No places can be guaranteed after this date. Once paid, the deposit is non-refundable. This payment is deducted from the fees for the first year.
Registration Fees – QAR 5,500
An application for a place in the school may be made by completing and returning the official application form available on the website or from the School Office.
Parents must provide the following documents before their child commences her education at the school:
(Required by Qatar Ministry of Education and British Safeguarding Guidelines)
1. The identification card or valid passport of the student (sight of the original, plus one copy).
2. The birth certificate of the student (sight of the original, plus one copy).
3. Two recent passport photographs.
4. A health record document for your daughter (copies)
5. A copy of a child’s previous record of achievement / school reports (copies)
6. A copy of the ID card of the Parents / Guardians (copy)
Additional for Non-Qatari applicants:
1. A copy of the ID card of the Sponsor (copy)
2. A valid residency permit for all non-Qataris (sight of the original plus, one copy)
3. A letter of employment from the child’s Sponsors workplace (original and copy)
Disclosure of any additional learning or medical needs must be informed to the school at this stage.
PLEASE NOTE THAT ALL REGISTRATION, ASSESSMENT AND DEPOSIT FEES ARE NON-REFUNDABLE
All admissions to Durham School for Girls Doha are considered by the school’s Admissions Panel, which comprises a member of the Senior Leadership Team (Head, Deputy Head, Head of Primary or Secondary) and the Head of Admissions. This meeting takes place upon Head of Admission’s request as and when necessary.
The School will be in a position to offer or reject an application once all the above steps in the admissions process have been satisfactorily completed.
If Durham School for Girls Doha has not received the confirmation payment by the date stated on the offer letter, a place can no longer be guaranteed.
Our Admissions process has shown our school will be oversubscribed, especially in the Early Years Foundation Stage, Upper Primary and Secondary Phases. Re-registering your daughter at the end of each academic year in the timeframe allocated will ensure your daughter remains with Durham School.
We are a fully inclusive school, providing that the school can cater for your daughter needs all of which will be discussed during the admissions process. When classes are full, girls will be placed on our waiting list.
When a place becomes available, places are filled from the waiting list with the following priority:
Siblings of a family already registered in Durham School for Girls Doha
Girls transferring from or with siblings in Durham School UK
New families applying for more places for more than one girl in other year groups
Associated partnership schools & companies.
New applications in order of date of application
A new class will be opened once there are 15 children on the waiting list. The exception to this is our Foundation Stage, whereby there is only a set number of places available and a waiting list is used should another child decide not to join the school. Any queries regarding waiting lists please speak to one of our admissions team members who will be happy to explain this further.