British or CBSE for my child ?

My baby will turn 4 on Jan 9th (Jan 9 2019). We are totally confused in choosing right curriculum for her.

Which one is best for a child?
Why people these days choose British over CBSE?

Please advise.

Saneehhasan Default Asked on May 29, 2022 in Curriculum.
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1 Answer(s)

Further to your message, the choice of curriculum is in part based on the background of the family and their experience, but also on availability of school places for children entering at KG and also on the future plans and ambitions they may have for their family.

The CBSE or ICSE curricula are highly regarded and the majority of families from the sub-continent will automatically consider one or other of these two Indian curricula as the natural choice for their children.  In reality, the number of Indian curriculum schools is much lower than the number of British curriculum schools in the UAE and historically, families have ended up in a British curriculum school for reasons of availability of places, but also because Indians are familiar with the British curriculum to some degree, given the historical associations.

Indian families also seem to feel that the CBSE curriculum (the vast majority of Indian curriculum schools offer this) is more rigorous, and for families who intend their children to carry on to university in India, this is again the logical choice. The British curriculum is often regarded as not as rigorous as there has not generally been the exam culture in true British curriculum schools that there is in the Indian.

However, the CBSE and ICSE curricula are evolving; moving away from testing and examinations until much later stages in the education process – it is notable that increasingly, Indian curriculum schools are adopting a similar approach to the British curriculum Early Years Foundation Stage, for KG children, which is play-based learning, and the practice of rote learning (memorisation and repetition) of which the Indian curricula have long been known, is being replaced by a more enquiry-based approach, where students learn to research and investigate to work out the answers themselves.

There are many British curriculum schools that are in essence still Indian schools, in so far as the leaders and teachers are predominantly from the sub-continent, and in choosing a school, it is important to understand whether the teaching methodology is a more updated one, using current techniques, or whether it is still the more traditional.  The KHDA inspection reports and also the reviews on can shed light on this.

Finally, if you are considering sending your child to university outside India, s/he will find it easier potentially to find a place overseas with an international school qualification such as British or IB, as both are recognised worldwide.  Having said that, by the time your child reaches the age to consider university, the type and way of delivering their education, under whichever curriculum, is likely to be very different to today.

At this stage, the curriculum is probably less relevant than finding a school which you feel is right for your child, taking into account location (so your daughter is not going to spend hours on a bus each day) and fees.  We always recommend that parents visit the schools they are considering to get a real sense of the look and feel of it.  Rather like buying a house, there are many that may fit the criteria, but often only one that feels like home.

WhichSchoolAdvisor Head of Department Answered on May 29, 2022.
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