International schools in Thailand are something you will quickly notice when arriving in the country and there are plenty to choose from no matter where you make your abode. These are schools that follow British, American, Australian, and Singaporean curriculum and where English is spoken as the primary language. The fact that that English is spoken is mainly the reason why expats want to send their children to these schools. Also, graduates from these schools usually go off to college in western countries having been prepared for further studies that equip them to do such. These schools provide the highest quality education and here are some other useful bits of information on them.
The Benefits on International Schools in Thailand
Besides being a place where your child can be taught in English, there are other distinct advantages to international schools. Because these schools are privately funded through tuition, they generally have more money to put back into resources, teachers, facilities, and equipment. Teachers are paid better at these schools than anywhere else in Thailand so you naturally get better quality. International schools are also up on the latest trends in using information technology in order to facilitate classroom learning therefore they tend to have modern servers and software.
Thailand international schools are also accredited and there are accrediting organizations that come annually, study the school, and then make recommendations to management. They are also regulated by the Thai Ministry of Education to ensure that children receive Thai cultural training which is critical to having a better quality of life here.
Another important benefit is that students attending these schools get an education in a multi-cultural environment. The student population does not just come from the United States and United Kingdom. They come from all over the world since English is the universal language.
What will it Cost?
Thailand international schools are pricey so you should make sure that you get what you pay for. The prices range from around 100,000 THB to as much as 500,000 THB per year. They also have registration fees that can be between 5,000 THB and 75,000 THB. The bottom line is that pricing depends on the school. Practically all of these schools have a website and publish their prices.
Expect to pay lower tuition for beginning grades and to pay higher as your children get older. If you have more than one child, there may be a discount for that.
What to Look for in an International School?
There are some international schools in Thailand that miss the mark when it comes to quality. It could be for several reasons. Remember that these schools are a business and if their enrollment is low it will more than likely affect how much tuition can be put back into them. Nonetheless, there are details to look for when evaluating an international school for your child.
First, the school should promote and insist on English as the primary language used. Many affluent Thai, Korean, Indian, and Chinese families also send their children to international schools and insist on English as well. An international school teacher should never be providing instruction in anything other than English.
Second, you want to look at the facilities. Are they well kept? Are classrooms clean and organized? Are classroom sizes reasonable? Are they air conditioned? Do washroom facilities have soap and tissue (you would be surprised that some do not)?
Another question to ask when choosing among Thailand international schools is if there are scholarship programs available. Many of these schools award scholarships to top performing students each semester and it is a way to save if you have a child who works exceptionally hard in school.
One way to determine if the school is giving a quality education is to look at how many of the graduates are attending universities in places such as the U.K., U.S., Australia, or any other top-name school outside of Thailand. You also need to look at the kinds of standardized testing students are being administered in their junior high and high school years such as the SAT (Scholastic Aptitude Test).
Another way to make sure your child gets a well-rounded education at an international school in Thailand is to look at the after-school programs offered. These are offered at an additional fee however their prices are not unreasonable. These could be courses in dance, guitar, Thai language, and even other world languages.
An international school in Thailand, in order to be accredited with the Thai Ministry of Education, must also instruct children in Thai language and culture. This is a definite plus because it allows your children to get more out of their Thailand experience. Get all the facts about these schools prior to your departure from your homeland and find the best among Thailand international schools that meets your needs.