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Documents Needed When Applying to a School

If you are moving to Dubai with your children and they are going to be attending school in Dubai start collecting all the documents you will need to make the procedure hassle free.

Here is a list of documents needed when applying to a school in Dubai.

Make sure you also check the schools official requirements!

  • Photocopy of your child’s passport (in which the residence visa is, or will be, stamped)
  • Photocopy of your child’s birth certificate
  • Copy of latest school report
  • Passport Photos (can be up to 6)
  • Transfer/Leaving Certificate from previous school

Important: An Original Transfer Certificate from the previous school is required to register a child with any school in the United Arab Emirates. Without a Leaving Certificate a school is unable to register a student with the Ministry of Education and the student will not be able to attend school in the UAE. You should note that the certificate must not be dated more than three months prior to the date of entry to the new school.

The original Transfer Certificate must contain the following information

  • Date of enrolment at your childs previous school
  • Year group placement at previous school
  • Date the child left the previous school
  • School stamp and signature
  • The Transfer Certificate of students from schools located in any country other than Australia, Canada, Europe, New Zealand, USA and UAE,MUST be in English or Arabic and Attested by:  • Ministry of Education • Ministry of Foreign Affairs • UAE Embassy for the country in which it was issued.

For students transferring from schools within the UAE, a Ministry approved Transfer Certificate is issued.

NB: The corresponding year group is of vital importance and the Ministry of Education may refuse the child entry if the year group does not correspond with that of the new school.

When offering during the year, schools also must follow KHDA regulations and can only offer places that start within the dates listed below:

• Moving within Dubai From a different curriculum September to mid November
• Moving from outside Dubai – from a different curriculum September to mid November
• Moving within Dubai From the same curriculum September to end January
• Moving from outside Dubai – from the same curriculum September to mid May

Have a look at our list of available curriculum’s, school directory,  and age comparisons for different curriculum’s.

19 Responses to “Documents Needed When Applying to a School”

  1. Siddique says:

    What if I withdrew my child near the end of the academic year and enrolled him in the UK (homeschooling). Now, I want to move him to a new school but his former school will not release a TC (claiming money owed). I have informed the KHDA to no avail. I have his end of year results from a UK homeschool. Can he register or should we continue with homeschooling? (He needs a social life too).

    • Louise says:

      As you need the transfer certificate to register the child at the new school under Ministry of Education rules I suggest you go in person to the KHDA to discuss this urgent matter bringing with you all receipts showing all monies were paid to the last school.

  2. Melissa says:

    Yeah, that’s the ticket!

  3. Simi says:

    hello, I am planning to move to Dubai this Oct. I want to my kids to go to a Dubai school. I’m in Canada and they do not issue a transfer certificate, instead they just gave the report card and another index short form with all the student details.

    This is the only they stuffs they provide. So what should i do?
    thanks simi

  4. Louise says:

    Hi, please find a link here from the KHDA which explains exactly what needs to be typed on a transfer certificate so you can ask your school to do this for you.

  5. sam says:

    my son’s school in UK have refused to issue him a transfer certificate. he is now in school in dubai and i have tried to get the certificate but they still refuse, is there another way round this?
    any ideas?

    please help if you can


  6. katya says:

    Moving to Dubai from UK this January. Have two children still don’t have school do you think there will be a problem to found one for January?

    • Louise says:

      To be honest – yes it will be hard however it does all depend on what years your children are in as some year groups are more busy than others. I urge you to contact all the schools in the next couple of days before they close for the holidays. Please see the school directory on expat echo dubai. I also advise you to take a place at a school you get offered a place at even if it is not your first choice and if a place becomes available in your chosen school in September you can then move them. Hope this helps.

  7. Mario says:

    I am transferring my two children to Dubai schools. We come from Mexico.

    Problem is, local Ministry of Education (SEP), refuses to attest Transfer Certificate as it is a non-officila document. Sincé SEP does not attest the document, Ministry of the Interior (SEGOB), refuses to attest it, and finally, Ministry of Foreign Affairs (SRE), will not even take a look at it.

    Please, anyone has any suggestion for this scenario?

    • Louise says:

      We are not familiar with such a case.
      We suggest you contact the school in Dubai they are going to and see if they will accept not attested transfer certificate..

      May be they want your documents to be attested by the UAE embassy and MOFA in the issuing country.

  8. ana says:

    the school is asking us to get the transfer certificate from the old school in gaza palestine stating only the first and the last name..the problem is ..schools in arab countries are writing the first name ,fathers name,,grandfathers name and then the family name .the old school doesnt want to issue the transfer cert,with only 2 names..the reason of the new schools is that the report card names which on their birth certificates are different from their names on their passport and resident card as they have a filipino passports.. philippine passports are using the first name…maiden name and family name we showed all the supporting documents ..birth certificates..marriage contract. etc .what should we do ? please help

    • Louise says:

      I advise due to the complexity of this matter that you contact the Knowledge and Human Development Authority.

  9. Raj says:

    I am transfering my son from South Korea to Dubai,we are getting transfer Certificate attested By Foriegin Affiers and UAE Embassy in Seoul.But Ministry of Education will not attest this since its an International School. UAE Embassy in Seoul understands this and will stamp the tranfer certificate.But school in Dubai is asking Ministry of Education Stamp.Is it required to have this stamp if we are stamping the other two stamps?

    • Louise says:

      As per the experience of consultants at Move One Relocations it is necessary to have it stamped by Ministry of Education.

  10. mildred says:

    How long it will take for us students to received our certificate? And what is the process..

    • Louise says:

      You will have to check the time period with the school in the US issuing the transfer certificate.

  11. Mike says:

    Dear Louise

    I am intended to bring my family from London next summer. They are attending schools in West London ( Local Schools). Here in the UAE they are asking for certificates to be attested from the ministry of Education.. The school belongs to the local council how can it be attested from the Ministry?


    • Louise says:

      If you are applying from a school in Europe (UK) it does not have to be attested by the Ministry of Education that is only for schools outside of Europe, Australia etc as per article. Which school is asking for that?

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