Physical address: Saadiyat Island, Abu Dhabi, UAE
Telephone: +971 2 497 0000
Gender: Co-educational
Teaching language: English
Curriculum: English National Curriculum, Cambridge IGCSE and A-levels
Ages: 3 to 18

What the school says

"Our educational philosophy focuses on empowering children to become independent thinkers and inspired learners by encouraging them to explore and discover for themselves. 

"Building community and fostering a sense of citizenship is key and our families have joined together with us to form a powerful and positive spirit and a sense of pride that motivates us all. 

"We are exceptionally privileged when it comes to facilities. Our state-of-the-art campus and location on Saadiyat Island are truly unique. However, buildings are buildings. What really matters is what happens within them and that’s where our focus lies. We believe that what sets us apart is the fact that we never lose sight of why we chose to work in education in the first place – to teach and inspire children."


Cranleigh is a proudly British school, offering the English National Curriculum for students aged 3 to 18.

The school is split into four sections:

  • Pre-prep: Ages 3 to 7
  • Prep: Ages 7 to 13
  • Senior: Ages 13 to 16 (culminating in Cambridge IGCSE)
  • Sixth Form: Ages 16 to 18 (culminating in A-Levels)


Fees for the 2021/2022 school year range from AED 65,000 (FS 1 to Year 1) to AED 96,333 (Year 12 to Year 13).

From the senior leadership team

“Our philosophy is very simple. Put the children first. Always. 

"As a school, Cranleigh Abu Dhabi is very serious about academic performance and results show that our pupils perform well above average. However, if top grades are all a child leaves school with then their education is only partially complete.

"As educators, we need to continually innovate to provide children with the kind of education they need in our high-speed, online world. The days of ‘teaching to the test’ where pupils simply reproduce rote-learned facts to tick the exam box are long gone. If schools continue to focus on grades at the expense of other developmental areas, children won’t be equipped with the kind of critical thinking and problem-solving skills so necessary for 21st-century life. Information is available at the click of a mouse; knowledge evolves at a staggering rate. If children don’t know how to think on their feet, learn from mistakes and collaborate with confidence, the fact that they have excellent grades won’t be enough. 

"Cranleigh has a much broader outlook, aiming to prepare pupils for the real world. Not all children are Ivy League or Oxbridge material – and the world doesn’t need them to be. What it needs is a generation of assured, well rounded, emotionally intelligent young adults. Academic results remain a primary driver for us, but not the only one. We are determined that a Cranleigh education will maximise our pupils’ academic capabilities, but our ambition is to give them more than that. We want to develop their sense of enquiry, their interpersonal skills, their moral compass and their capacity to prioritise in this demanding digital age. We want our children to leave us as motivated, tolerant, confident individuals capable of managing the pace of change that adult life will throw at them.”

From the parents

“Some time back I read an article on: ‘What makes a good school?’

The following 7 things were listed:

1. High expectations for the school, teachers and students
2. Dedicated teachers
3. Effective discipline
4. Variety of instructional techniques
5. Individualised instruction and approaches to students
6. Leadership


7. Students want to be there

Cranleigh Abu Dhabi provides them all.”

– Parent

“We are starting our fourth year at Cranleigh and we are happy we chose this school for our children. The school focuses on developing the whole child and that is exactly what we want for them.”

– Parent

Further reading​

►For more, see International Schools in Abu Dhabi