US Embassy, Qatar Monitoring Complaints on
Dr. Joseph Ghaly, Model American International School

Soon after the Model American International School (MAIS) opened its doors in late 2008, International Schools Review began receiving disturbing reviews of the school. Through the “contact us” forms on our web site, teachers in distress wrote to tell us they had reported Dr. Ghaly and the Model American School to a variety of agencies. Following are excerpts from those “contact us” forms, all of which were submitted anonymously.

” ….The US embassy has received complaints from staff at this school and they have helped secure passports for teachers trying to leave the country. 

“….Dr. Ghaly has been reported to the Ministry of Education and it is believed they have begun investigating the school. 

“…. The Association for Supervision and Curriculum Development (ASCD), a prestigious US organization, has also ended ALL contracts with Dr. Ghaly/ Ghali.

” ….You should be aware the International Council for Educational Reform & Development (ICERD) is a company owned by Dr. Ghaly.”

We contacted the US embassy in Qatar for confirmation of the information we received from teachers.

Timothy F. Ponce, Consular Section Chief, returned our email almost immediately.

Dear Ben,

  Thank you for your email. Unfortunately, we cannot act as a legal representative against an employer in Qatar or be party to an employment dispute. What we have been doing is monitoring the teachers’ complaints against MAIS and Dr. Ghaly. We are also assisting MAIS teachers who come to us by providing advice on Qatar’s judicial and labor complaint systems and with securing release of passports as needed. If you or your colleagues do learn of any other teachers who need assistance, please forward them this email address, the U.S. Embassy in Doha web site,, or the U.S. Embassy phone number, [974] 496 6000.

Timothy F. Ponce
Consular Section Chief
U.S. Embassy
Doha, Qatar

  We also contacted the ASCD – Association for Supervision and Curriculum Development. Teachers reported Dr. Ghaly had represented the Model American School as an ASCD certified school. The school has been in operation since October 2008. In response to our inquiry, ASCD reported they had been recruiting staff and working in a consulting capacity since February of 2009, but the school will be operated independently of both ASCD Middle East and ASCD at the end of the school year.

Further research revealed Mr. Ghaly and Model American School has been removed from the authorized list of recruiters by at least one agency that asked to remain anonymous. For more on this school, ISR members can Log in and read reviews of the Model American School Qatar.

As always, we recommend teachers research any school before accepting a position. We will keep you up-to-date as we learn more.

Teacher Responses

Many thanks to the professionals at International Schools Review and to the American (and other) Embassies around the world who strive to keep international educators safe from unscrupulous charlatans.

However, I feel compelled to address the statement of ASCD reporting their involvement in ASCD-MAIS beginning February 2009.

I went to the ASCD web site ( today, 2 July 2009, and searched for Joseph Ghaly, Joseph Ghali and ASCDME. There are links to him and ASCDME, including an article from July 2008 noting a relationship with him for over 3 years through ASCD’s “Connected Communities” in Qatar.

I also recall that the initial recruiting site from June 2008 on which Mr. Ghaly advertised for extensive staff for ASCDME-MAIS in Doha and statements that memberships to ASCD would be provided, along with ASCD support and staff development. I find it hard to believe that this was unknown to ASCD.

On October 2008, a two page article appeared in a supplement to the Gulf Times which contained the following excerpts, “ASCD-MAIS Curricula…Model Accredited American Curriculum selected by ASCD Senior Faculty and Authors…”. “Being an ASCD School, it was quite easy to obtain the support of the most prestigious accrediting agencies in the world”. “All of ASCD Middle East School Teachers, Administrators…are CERTIFIED AMERICAN EXPERIENCED Educators selected by ASCD”. The article specifically names certain ASCD individuals as Board Members of ASCDME-MAIS.

The Internet also links ASCD to Mr. Ghaly’s ICERD enterprises out of Redwood City, CA in the translation and publication of ASCD materials, as well as their October 2008 contract with him and the Ministry of Education in Dubai to train teachers.

This man continues to advertise for teachers in the Gulf region. In February 2009, there was an article published in the Gulf Times noting that Mr. Ghaly had a contract with the Ministry of Education in Oman to open schools in that country. Mr. Ghaly/Ghali has also advertised for teachers on a web site called Middle East careers. 

Thank you, again, ISR, for admonishing international teachers to do their homework before selecting positions. Your article regarding this man is the tip of an iceberg.

Name Withheld