Meet the principal: Darren GaleNovember 9, 2016, 9:30 am GMT
Darren Gale is no newbie to the UAE's education sector. Having moved to the UAE 10 years ago as director of learning and teaching at Jumeirah College, Gale was recently appointed principal of Kings' Nad Al Sheba.
"I have been fortunate to be part of two 'start up/developing school' projects so I am already very aware of the demands and challenges that this entails," Gale states.
However, considering his experience in the region, Gale is well aware of the challenges he faces. He notes: "I feel the greatest challenge is for us to take our place alongside more established schools. Developing schools have to work harder and in a very short timeframe to get established. Quite rightly, the communities' expectations are very high. Competition for places amongst schools and attracting children and families is a challenge. There is no room for complacency. Schools are now forced to think differently; what makes you stand out from other schools in Dubai?
To this end, Gale says he will focus on "maximising the learning potential of all children" with new facilities the school is expected to launch this year.
"Maintaining and exceeding the high standards and quality of learning and teaching is one of our top priorities for this academic year; ensuring our curriculum extends opportunities for all children to enjoy and achieve. In a relatively short period of time, we pride ourselves on the fact that our children are happy," he says.
Due the school's growth, Kings' Nad Al Sheba has also recruited several new class teachers and specialists, and retaining staff will be a priority too, Gale adds.
"Getting the balance right between professional and personal support is key along with providing professional learning opportunities which can be more evident in developing schools. We will be working hard to ensure that our leaders and managers strive to put people first," he explains.
Darren Gale started his teaching career in 1999 in Wiltshire, England. Following a variety of leadership posts in the UK, he joined Jumeirah College as the director of learning and teaching in 2006. In 2009, Gale joined Aldar Academies, as the head of secondary in Abu Dhabi. He was later promoted to principal, and under his leadership the school was twice rated a Band A school and further accredited by British Schools in the Middle East (BSME) as 'well above the standard'.
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