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Interest in International Schools in Asia is Growing, But Why?
The number of students in international schools continues to grow in recent years. The popularity of international schools has never been in question, and it is more apparent now that they are investing in Asia.
Previously, if you live in Asia and want to send your children to earn an international education, you’d have to look outside your country. You’ll most likely send them to Europe or the United States. Sending them overseas to a boarding school seemed to be the only solution then.
Forget about not seeing your kids for months. If you want to send them to an international school right now, you only have to look at the continuous rise of the number of international schools in your country to know that times have changed. You don’t even have to live near a major Asian city. You will find these international schools tucked away in provinces where they are surrounded by lush greenery.
Why the Sudden Rise of International Schools
There has been a growing concern among affluent Asian families about sending their kids to a boarding school. It used to be that children as young as five years old are sent to boarding schools in Switzerland. Today, they prefer to send their children to a local international school or a private school as long as they can keep an eye on them. Despite the technology that can bridge the gap during their kids’ boarding-school years, parents are realizing the importance of being with their kids during these critical development years.
However, parents still want to send their kids to the best school. And for many Asian families, the best means is Western education; one that is based on either British or American education. In fact, parents would want to enroll their kids in schools that will provide a traditional pathway to get into study destinations in Europe and the U.S. Alas, with the rise of international schools in many Asian countries like Singapore, China, Japan, Malaysia, Hong Kong, and Thailand, parents can give their kids the best international education minus the boarding-school tuition.
The Fastest Growing Economy
Despite the many challenges that face the region, Asia is still the fastest growing economic region. It also has the largest continental economy globally. An international school that wants to expand its services and network will look at the Asian region for a possible investment.
But the growing economy may not even be the biggest factor. About 60% of the world’s population is in Asia. It is also home to many expatriates who want the tropical weather in Southeast Asia. Not to mention, the cost of living is still relatively low in many parts of the region.
The rise in international schools in the region is an answer to a demand for more quality education. This demand comes not only from wealthy families but from middle-income families, too. They dream to send their kids to the best schools. They see the best schools—international schools, in particular—as their kids’ ticket to a better life in the future.
Better Opportunities after Graduation
It is not that students from international schools get better pay and better opportunities (though that is part of the equation). The rise in popularity of international schools is because of globalization. In a globalized world, people who have diverse backgrounds are more likely to survive the dog-eat-dog-world of the industries. Their experiences in dealing with different cultures, languages, and traditions will enable them to carve their own niche in an increasingly competitive job market.
Countries in Asia are realizing that. To empower their citizens and make them competitive, they have to receive the best education possible. International schools understand this need and demand, which shows why they have been expanding to the region. Creating better opportunities for people is not the responsibility of the school alone. It’s the obligation of a truly progressive government. With countries in the region opening their arms to international schools, expatriate and foreign students and local ones are taking notice.
Even amid a global pandemic, the rise of international schools to the top of the Asian region’s education tier did not slow down. Surveys showed there’s even a slight uptick in the number of students enrolled in top international schools in the region. This alone is an indication of how ingrained this educational system is in the Asian families’ mindset. And as the region becomes more powerful economically and politically, the international education system will follow suit.
Images courtesy of Pixabay, UnSplash, and Pexels.
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