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The SABIS® Educational System

The SABIS® Educational System

The SABIS® Educational System is a comprehensive academic program that has been developed and refined over a century.  With a balance of academics, self-development, and life preparation, the SABIS® Educational System prepares its students for success in college, fosters a lifelong interest in learning, and develops responsible world-class citizens. It blends quality education with traditional values of hard work and responsibility for oneself and for others.

The SABIS® Educational System consists of a demanding, international curriculum that is updated regularly so that it remains relevant to the age, the international community, and to the global environment.

Philosophy and Goals

SABIS® believes that a university education is academically accessible to nearly all students. SABIS® also believes that the success of an educational institution should be measured by the value it adds to each individual.

SABIS® Network schools aim to achieve the following academic goals:

  • To qualify every student for entrance into colleges/universities around the world
  • To provide a well-rounded education based on a mastery of English, Arabic, and Mathematics
  • To enable students to benefit from a trilingual education system
  • To train students in logical reasoning and critical thinking
  • To prepare students to be able to sustain intellectual efforts for long periods
  • To generate excitement for lifelong learning

Non-academic goals in SABIS® Network schools seek to prepare graduates who:

  • Uphold high standards of ethical, moral, and civic conduct
  • Make informed decisions on social issues
  • Defend convictions and reverse negative peer pressure
  • Participate in extracurricular  activities, school management, and community work
  • Foster tolerance, cooperation, and teamwork
  • Understand the people of the world through an appreciation of differences as well as similarities

In an increasingly competitive world, a university education is an essential component contributing to future success. Practically all students educated in SABIS® Network schools go on to graduate from reputable universities, and a large percentage of them go on to pursue advanced university degrees. As all SABIS® Network schools implement a non-selective admissions policy, SABIS® attributes its success, and that of its students, to the philosophy, goals, and high standards of efficiency and accountability that the SABIS® Educational System requires.

What makes this System Different?

SABIS® believes that an intelligent approach produces better results. Excellent results are achieved by:

  • Planning and preparing
  • Teaching methodically and comprehensively, using SABIS® teaching methods
  • Conducting frequent and regular testing
  • Engaging in continual and appropriate follow-up and support
  • Encouraging active student participation in the education process

Everything possible is done to ensure success. No one who studies in a school in the SABIS® Network is allowed to “fail in peace.”

Planning and Preparing

Thorough preparation precedes teaching. Each course is researched, structured, and described in terms of hundreds of clearly stated objectives called “points.”

A plan for each subject at each stage is prepared. Each plan is complete and includes all of the “points” to be taught and the skills to be developed. It is detailed with precise and measurable objectives.  It is paced so that progress is charted against a time line. Each plan for each stage dovetails with that of the following stage, ensuring that nothing essential to further learning is omitted, and thus enabling the transition from year to year to be smooth and successful.

Teaching Methods

Students in SABIS® Network schools benefit from a system that views a successful learning environment as one in which students can learn the most in the least amount of time.  Time is seen as a limited resource and one that must be maximized. In delivering instruction to students at all grade levels from first grade through high school, teachers in SABIS® Network schools implement the SABIS® Point System of instruction, which is based on the precise identification of measureable learning objectives, called “points,” for every lesson and actively engages students in a community of learners.

In the SABIS Point System®, teachers present one point at a time and then ask the class to demonstrate their understanding of the concept through the completion of a written exercise. Next, moving from teacher-led instruction, the class engages as a community of learners, checking each other’s work in small, manageable groups. One student in each group is selected to coordinate the group based on academic competence in the subject. This student oversees his/her own micro-community of learners, managing questions and offering further explanations (or looking to other group members to do so), when needed. The group leader also works in close coordination with the teacher, asking for support and keeping students on task until everyone in the group has shown mastery. Once the entire class has demonstrated mastery of the point, teacher-led instruction resumes and the learning cycle continues.

Testing and Monitoring

Continuous evaluation of each student is an integral part of the educational process used by the SABIS® Network. Testing to evaluate student learning and to permit timely positive intervention is frequent and regular.

Testing students in this way has a number of very important advantages:

  • Students are prepared to perform well under the pressure of time constraints and develop the ability to organize available time well
  • Students develop the ability to focus and to sustain concentration for increasingly longer periods
  • The feedback from testing allows close monitoring and follow-up

The proprietary SABIS® School Management System provides many programs that allow reliable and prompt assessment of student knowledge and effective follow-up. One such program, the SABIS Academic Monitoring System® (SABIS® AMS), is used to assess student knowledge of every concept taught. The SABIS® AMS allows “gaps” in student knowledge to be pinpointed as they form. Working as a community of learners, teachers and students then focus their efforts on “filling the gaps.” The SABIS® AMS allows the progress of each and every student to be continuously monitored and problem areas followed up on using student-targeted solutions.

When “gaps” in knowledge are identified and eliminated, a gap-free, cohesive structure is built in students’ minds, allowing further, secure learning to take place. (For the internal examinations taken in SABIS® Network schools, please see the section on School Academics.)


The progress of each student is continually followed up on and all students receive the support needed. Every available means is used to help catch up students who may fall behind.   Students are advised in study techniques, motivated by the academic staff, and encouraged by receiving help from peer-tutors or teachers. In the SABIS® Network, no one is allowed to fall through the cracks.