"One of the most important things we can do for our community is serve and help them achieve success in their lives."
Ms. Janet DesJardins [School Principal]
Ms. Janet DesJardins [School Principal]

My name is Janet DesJardins and I am the Founding Principal of Italian International School Abu Dhabi. I am delighted to join and help celebrate Italian culture together with our community.

My experience with Italy and all things Italian started at a very young age. I grew up in a small city in Northern Ontario, in Canada where over ½ of the city’s population was inhabited by Italian immigrants. Needless to say, I grew up enjoying the best pizza and pasta to be rivaled around the world. Many of my friends were Italian and we frequented local shops and restaurants that were also Italian. I have actually turned out to be a relatively good cook of Italian food. As an adult, I have had the great fortune to travel to Italy many times, and my daughter actually lived and taught in Bergamo, Italy for a short time. There are so many incredible things about Italian culture, and I am quite thrilled to be a part of this amazing project; to open the Italian International School of Abu Dhabi.

Regarding my career in education, I worked nationally in Canada for 15 years as a teacher and Special Education Coordinator, and have been abroad for 16 years. Most of my time abroad has been in senior leadership roles and has brought me to 7 different countries. Each has had its own treasures about it, they have all been amazing in their own way!

I have been in the UAE since 2017, and love the people, the quality of life and most of all, the sunshine. There are so many things that are special about the UAE. I feel at home here to explore my passions including learning, volunteering in the community, nutrition and wellbeing. In addition to being a school leader, I am a Certified International Health Coach helping people live their best lives through education and learning about nutrition.

One of the most important things we can do for our community is serve and help them achieve success in their lives. The Italian International School aims to do just that, to help the children in our school community become the best version of themselves, while they learn and experience wonderful Italian traditions.

We welcome everyone to join in and help us to celebrate this amazing culture. Like, subscribe or share to always keep up to date with the exciting happenings in our school!

Janet DesJardins
Founding Principal


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Khalifa City A, Abu Dhabi, UAE

Phone: +971 50 4472 466

Landline: +971 2 208 4100