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Choosing the best school for your child is a major decision. Such should not be taken lightly. The future of your child is at stake and you should give it all you’ve got to ensure that your child gets to live the life that he or she deserves and wants. This post is perfect for you if you’re choosing between enrolling your child in a national school or an international school. After reading this, you’d be well aware of the following:

  • What a national school is
  • What an international school is
  • The five main differences between a national school and an international school

Fully understanding the main differences between a national school and an international school will allow you to confidently decide which one is best for your child. 

What is a national school?

A national school is any educational institution that caters to the needs of the people in a specific country. Any school that mainly teaches children living in their own country is a national school. National schools can either be public or private. Public national schools are run by the government while private national schools are run by private educational institutions. The government of the country where a national school is has a say in its curriculum regardless if it’s public or private. A public national school will strictly follow curriculums provided by the government while private national schools will be given minimum standards to comply with.

What is an international school?

An international school is any educational institution that teaches both local and international students. As the name suggests, it caters to an international community. Expatriates from different countries have their children enrolled in international schools. Children of ambassadors, plenipotentiaries, diplomats, and foreign entrepreneurs are always enrolled in international schools. An international school is not run by the government. It is run by private educational institutions that comply with the following requisites of the International Association of School Librarianship (IASL):

1. All subjects are taught in English. English is the school’s primary language.

2. American and British curricula are followed. Some international schools observe the following curricula:

  • Edexcel
  • International Primary Curriculum
  • Cambridge Assessment International Education
  • International General Certificate of Secondary Education
  • International Baccalaureate

3. Like Bangkok Prep International School, an international school must be accredited by the Council of International Schools or the Council of British International Schools.

4. Admission is fair. No student is given special treatment. Admission is granted to any student with skills and abilities that are compatible with the curriculum.

What are the main differences?

Parents with a specific goal in mind when it comes to the future of their child should take note of the following differences between an international school and a national school.

Difference # 1: Curriculum

As you’ve read earlier, international schools follow a different curriculum. A kid enrolled in an international school has better chances of getting admitted to schools abroad as they will be equipped with pretty much the same training that other students from other countries that follow American and British curricula undergo. Students from international schools have an easier time when it comes to being admitted to top universities across the globe. If you have plans of having your child study abroad for college, you should definitely consider enrolling him or her at an international school.

Difference # 2: Socialization

International schools allow for a more diverse and globalized community. Your child will fully develop his or her social skills by interacting with children from different cultures. International schools mostly have foreign students while national schools solely have local students. If you want your child to mainly interact with kids from the same background, then you should opt for a national school. But if you want your child to be open to different people with different cultures, then you should be opting for an international school.

Difference # 3: Career Prospects

If you want your child to be a global citizen with choices of career prospects from all over the globe, you should have him or her enrolled in an international school. International schools offer diverse curricula that will allow your child to fully zone in on his or her interests while building a solid curriculum vitae. If you want your child to have more career opportunities abroad, then you should have him or her enrolled in an international school. You should opt for a national school if you feel that your child will excel more if he or she will be having a career in your own country.

Difference # 4: Educators

International schools recruit expert teachers from all over the world. If you want your child to be exposed to different instructors from different countries, you should opt for an international school. You should opt for a national school if you want your child to be taught by local teachers with nationalistic values. 

Difference # 5: Population 

National schools are populated with students from all over the country while international schools have limited students. With a limited student population, international schools get to fully monitor each student. Each class is small and not jam-packed. Such a set-up allows teachers to fully interact, observe, and evaluate the performance of each student. If you feel that your child will excel more in a fully monitored classroom, you should opt for an international school. Opt for a national school if you feel that your child would be better off if surrounded by many students.