International Schools Winning Over Expats - Survey

Expat survey shows huge potential for the growth of international primary and secondary schools in Thailand, as schools take lion's share of expat children.
International Schools Winning Over Expats - Survey
By Carli Allan
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A survey by Thaivisa also revealed that 56% of parents choose to send their child to an international school in the country, rather than to a local school or overseas. 

87% of expats currently living in Thailand have at least one dependent child, and 36% have two or more.

Over four in 10 of those surveyed (42%) in May said they will need to find a school for their children to attend over the next three years. The figure increases slightly to 46% in Bangkok where the majority of international schools are located. Some 67% of expats living in Bangkok already send their children to an international school, or plan to do so.

Much of the growth in the international school sector has come in the last two decades.  In the early 1990s there were just five international schools in Thailand. Today, there are more than 180 international schools educating more than 60,000 students, with the most popular offering a British, US or IB curriculum.

More are coming. Four new international schools are already known to be opening over the next two years, including Rugby School Thailand (prep and senior schools), Shrewsbury International School City campus, Wellington College International School and BASIS International School Bangkok.

Existing schools including Grace International School, Krabi International School, BCIS Phuket, and Hua Hin International School are expanding with new campuses or additional year groups.

Read more about international schools in Thailand here.

More than one in five expats living in Thailand plan to spend more than THB 400,000 a year to send their child to an international school. This figure increases to more than one in three families living in Bangkok.

Thai international school fees are among the lowest in South East Asia – they are 21.7% cheaper than Singapore, for example. While there are international schools with fees of around THB 400,000, Bangkok’s top tier schools, including NIST International School, Bangkok Patana School and KIS International School, have fees of more than THB 500,000 from Year 1.

Primary tuition fees for Year 1 range from THB 67,000 at Glory International School to THB 805,700 at International School Bangkok. The average cost is THB 320,000. Secondary tuition fees for Year 7 range from around THB 8,100 at Adventist International Mission School to THB 904,000 at International School Bangkok. The average cost is THB 385,000. This rises to an average of THB 456,000 for college, Years 12 and 13.

You can read more about the cost of an education in Thailand here.

The survey was conducted by Thaivisa with responses from 350 expats. 29% of respondents live in Bangkok and 68% represented working parents, compared to the national average of 44%.

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