GESS returns with its 16th edition

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The event will focus on supporting the demand for the growing number of international schools in the Middle East, which has reached a record high of 2,068 in 2023 

Dubai, Sept 11, 2023: Global Educational Supplies and Solutions (GESS) Dubai, organised by Tarsus, is returning with its 16th edition from October 30 to November 1, 2023. The largest education exhibition in the Middle East region will focus on supporting the demand for the growing number of international schools in the Middle East, which has reached a record high of 2,068 in 2023.  

To be held at the Za’abeel Halls, Dubai World Trade Centre, the event aims to equip educators with the best tools to succeed in shaping the education landscape for more than 1.9 million students in the region. 

International schools’ growth  

According to data compiled by ISC Research exclusively for GESS Dubai, the last decade has witnessed a substantial 54.6% increase in the number of international schools worldwide, rising from 8,771 schools in January 2013 to 13,564 schools in January 2023. Among continents, Europe accounts for 14.3% of the global international school market, while Asia takes the lead with around 57.1% of the market share and 64.1% of student enrollment.  

Within Asia, Western Asia, which encompasses the Middle East excluding Egypt, stands out as a hub of international education with 2,068 institutions. The UAE, at the forefront of this educational wave, boasts 769 international schools or a significant 37% of the total. As of January 2023, the region is home to 1.9 million students attending international schools, reflecting a 7.9% increase over the past five years.  

Factors driving growth 

Several factors have contributed to the growth in international education within Western Asia. These include a surge in expatriate populations from China, Russia and Ukraine, and those from South and Southeast Asian countries; the return of Western expatriate professionals since the pandemic; and rising numbers of Saudi nationals opting for international schools, driven by young parents who have experienced international education themselves. In the UAE’s city of Dubai, with a population that is expected to almost double within 20 years, these schools are being located to support distinct community suburbs that are emerging as the city continues to expand. 

Highlights for 2023 

One of the main attractions of GESS Dubai 2023 is GESS Talks (Live Stage), the latest addition this year presenting a curated lineup of speakers and guests from GESS podcasts and webinars. Attendees will have the unique opportunity to engage with these thought-leaders in real-time, facilitating in-depth discussions and insights following each session. 

This year the event’s comprehensive CPD accredited conference programme focusses on sustainability, which aligns with the overarching conversation at the upcoming COP28 hosted in Dubai, emphasising the need for education to empower future generations to drive positive environmental change; (b) EdTech; (c) Wellbeing; (d) and the Transition from K-12 to Higher Education.  

The exclusive Leaders in Education Conference is tailored towards principals and other members of the Leaders in Education community. It delves into the intricate challenges confronted by school leaders, spotlighting the essential skills and attributes needed for effective leadership and triumph in senior roles. 

The Wellbeing Space is a dedicated panel where attendees can learn about international research and explore cutting-edge methodologies for holistic growth, fostering well-being within both educators and their educational communities. 

Through Skills Development, the immersive workshop-style sessions and in-depth talks, participants will be able to engage in comprehensive discussions and demonstrations crafted to provide a hands-on and practical avenue for leadership teams to acquire new skills and techniques.  

In addition, at Education Innovations, participants will be able to explore the seamless integration of emerging technologies and transformative trends that will shape the future of education and unravel the possibilities they hold.