Welcome message from the Founding Head

Mr. Tom Farquhar

Welcome to the new paradigm in education. It is my privilege to announce the opening of GEMS Nations Academy in Dubai. Our school pairs innovative teaching methods with new digital communication tools to form a network of connected, creative learners. Offering the American curriculum, enriched by a diverse international context, we take every student on a new journey of academic achievement and self-discovery, going beyond what schools have accomplished before.

Today we all belong to an information age that is radically changing the way we live and learn. Individuals, organizations, and nations are challenged to keep pace. Leadership is redefined as innovation, creative problem-solving, and the use of new tools to achieve ambitious goals. But greatness is using these skills to advance the cause of prosperity, sustainability, and peace—to imagine a future that brings people together and fulfills our highest hopes—for our children and for our nations.

After more than two decades leading prominent private schools in the United States, I joined GEMS Education to create a school that sets the new standard for international education, for student engagement, and for connected learning. In highly interactive classrooms, our students are encouraged to cultivate their exceptional potential in full measure, guided by gifted teachers. A broad spectrum of activities stimulate the many dimensions of each child’s intelligence. Challenge and opportunity, in equal measure, are the natural outgrowth of close engagement of our teachers and students in an environment of intellectual intensity.

A center of excellence where students experience a sense of belonging, Nations Academy gives them the courage to try new things, to take intellectual risks. GEMS believes that we learn from our mistakes as well as from our successes, and it takes a supportive community to encourage the development of curiosity, creativity and imagination. We are ideally situated at this crossroads of cultures in Dubai, a city that, like our students, is dynamically growing, embracing innovation, and creating the future.

Indeed, our students are supported in developing the knowledge and skills to thrive in this new world. But the hallmarks of a GEMS education are our enduring values: leading through innovation, pursuing excellence, growing by learning, and global citizenship. With this holistic approach, we aim to produce not just great learners, but great people.

With the opening of GEMS Nations Academy, we are bringing a fresh answer to the age-old question of how best to unlock the extraordinary potential of every child. The keys are resourcefulness and resilience, imagination and creativity, challenge and support, collaboration, caring, and community. We will always remain relentlessly optimistic as we pursue innovative ways to challenge and inspire. And like our students, we will never stop learning.


Tom Farquhar
Head of School