Moving your family to a new country is an exciting and challenging adventure. Relocation to Bangkok is no exception. Chief on the list of concerns for most parents is finding suitable family accommodation and international schooling for their children. You’ll want to find the best standard of education possible, in a convenient location, and at a quality school that will meet your child’s educational needs as quickly and effortlessly as possible.
If you’ve done some cursory research, you’ll know that Sathorn is considered one of the best neighbourhoods in the city when it comes to available housing, schooling, and medical care. And so, if you’ve already set your mind on an apartment near an international school in Sathorn, let’s help you settle the question of schooling.
With the wealth of options out there, it’s no wonder many new ex-pat parents feel a little overwhelmed by the situation. While we can’t make the all-important school decision for you, we can provide some helpful information to guide you. Here’s what you need to know with regards to the big three questions: curriculum, logistics, and cost. Work these out, and you’ll be able to choose the right international school in Sathorn for your kids.
Firstly, the most popular language of instruction in international schools is English. If your children aren’t speakers, ensure there is a program in place to get them up to speed as quickly as possible.
Next, you need to choose a curriculum. The standard choices are the International Baccalaureate (IB) or the national curricula of the UK, US, Australia, Germany, France, etc. Perhaps base your decision off the curriculum your child was taught before you moved, where you may proceed to next or where your children will go to university.
Lastly, it’s also essential to check out class sizes, student demographics, additional support (after-school activities) and facilities (sports field, gymnasium, library, tech lad, etc. And, of course, the general ethos and approach to learning at the school.
Next on the list of essential factors to consider is logistics. How far is the school from your place of work? Is it walkable from home? Is it located on a major road with lots of pollution? Does the school offer a bus transfer service?
If you’ve already settled on an apartment near an international school in Sathorn, you can work back from there to figure out your daily routine, as per each school’s operating hours. Many international schools offer before/after school activities. If classes end at 3:00 pm, this can be a real lifesaver. Your child can stay at school until the early evening, and you can pick them up on your way home from the office. When taking into consideration Bangkok’s congested traffic situation, your commute to/from school is a valid consideration.
For many expatriate families, the primary factor in their choice of an international school is cost. If the budget is an important consideration for you, you’ll need to do added research and school visits to figure out where you can get the most ‘bang for your buck’. And keep in mind that ‘yearly fees’ do not reflect the full cost of sending your child to an international school, there are a lot of hidden extras. For example, many schools charge an additional registration fee and yearly fees increase grade-by-grade. Besides, you will have to pay extra for books, learning materials, uniforms, food, and transport. Oh boy, that list has sure added up!