Secondary School

Welcome to Secondary School at GEMS Founders School - Masdar City

We follow for the National Curriculum for England in the Secondary School. The curriculum is a broad and balanced one that gives students the opportunity to develop their knowledge and skills in preparation for Key Stage 4. This approach allows learning to encompass the importance of the physical, emotional and psychological wellbeing of children which we value highly.

Design Thinking Approach

The curriculum is broken down individual subjects with a Design Thinking Approach in everything that we do.

Core Subjects




Arabic (for Arabic Speakers)

Arabic (for non-Arabic Speakers)

Islamic Studies (for Muslim students)

UAE Social Studies

Moral Education



Specialist Subjects


Humanities (History and Geography)


PSHE (Personal, Social and Health Education) – for Non-Muslim students

Physical Education




We believe that in every subject we offer at GFA we allow for development not just academically but also a student’s Communication and Language Development. Personal, Social and Emotional Development, Physical Development and Well-being.


We recognise entering Key Stage 3, is a key moment in a child’s school life. Our mission is to ensure learners are fully prepared and have a smooth transition in preparation for independent learning, curriculum content and application of knowledge. To ensure this transition process is seamless, all students are supported so that they are all aware of our high standards and expectations of them. This enables learners to feel more confident and familiar with the secondary environment early on.

The curriculum in Key Stage 3 is designed to facilitate learners to grow independently, with a Design, Thinking approach in mind in whatever we do. Curriculum content in core and specialist subjects links to GCSE standards to prepare learners for choosing their options and beginning the courses upon moving into Key Stage 4. Lessons are all pitched at curriculum standard within the Key Stage, allowing learners to develop application, analytical and meta-thinking skills in all subjects. Importantly, teachers also offer the opportunity for challenge and tailor learning where support is needed and plan interventions when necessary.

Building on the Foundations 

In Key Stage 3, along with the rest of the secondary school, we assess frequently during lessons. Deep marking in core subjects takes place allowing learners to respond and build on the foundations of their work. Progress checks take place frequently in Key Stage 3, whereby the class teacher takes into consideration progress over time to accumulate a milestone of the level the learner is working at.

Much like entering the Key Stage, learners are also supported and given detailed advice and guidance when in Grade 8 to prepare for moving on into Key Stage 4. This is conducted through a steady process of parent-student option and information evenings, as well as one to one advice from the school counsellor and subject leads about GCSE courses. Particularly in Grade 8, the curriculum reflects the standard expected in Key Stage 4, thus setting our learners up to further their success and surpass their potential when eventually taking their examinations at a later stage in their educational journey with us at GFA.

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