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An overview of the tuition fees of international schools in Thailand

The pandemic is challenging for any type of industry, the education industry is no exception. The structures within the educational system were not made to cope with a pandemic. If the system is not adjusted, it will be unable to bear the burden of expenses.

Modern day parents want to choose a quality school for their children to secure a bright future for their offspring. They’re willing to invest expensively in education. Therefore, international schools can largely profit from these type of parents.

Prachachat Business, a company that surveys the rates of international school tuition fees, found that these schools have high tuition fees. By extensive desk research through different websites, the company found that most of the tuition fees of these schools start at hundred thousand baht per year. Some places ahave even higher fees reaching to almost a million baht per year. This is a list of the ten international schools in Thailand with the highest tuitions fee for starting students:

  1. Verso International School 900,000 baht/year
  2. International School Bangkok 850,000 baht/year
  3. King’s College International School 735,000 baht/year
  4. Harrow International School Bangkok 729,000 baht/year
  5. Brighton College International School Bangkok 721,400 baht/year
  6. Denla International School Denla British School 704,007 baht/year
  7. Basis International School 685,000 baht/year
  8. Wellington College International School Bangkok 645,000 baht/year
  9. Ruamrudee International School 630,000 baht/year
  10. Bangkok Patana School 628,300 baht/year

Assistent. Prof. Dr. Toyot Paladejpong from DBS International School Executive Director, said that tuition fees at international schools are up to 4 times more expensive than government schools or private schools. However, compared to international schools in other Asian countries like Singapore or Japan, Thai international schools are less expensive.

Dr. Toyot

Overall, the international schools listed above are in the same quality range. The focus is on teaching and learning structures are adapted to children’s needs. Additionally, the competition between international schools is increasing. Recruiting good teachers is key, but that’s not an issue for Thailand since it is proven to be a top choice for foreigners because of the interesting food culture.

“At the moment, the educational system is suffering. Thailand used to have more than 30,000 schools… The amount of schools are gradually decreasing as the amount of child births decrease. The birt rate is currently at 500,000 per year. People are not willing to have a lot of children anymore, for financial reasons.”

“If the birthrate would increase to 800,000 births per year, this problem would be non-existent. But we cannot force people to have children… We can only adapt and change our ways in order to support the 500,000 aspiring students. Additionally, it’s the duty of the educational institutions to develop skiled staff and to build confidence in parents.”

The highest family expenses are children’s tuition

– Dr. Toyot

Dr. Toyot further said that modern day parents pay more and more attention to investing in their children’s education, trying to do the best to their ability for their children. I talk to parents and they reflect on it as well, saying that the highest family expenses are the children’s education. You can tell that Thai parents focus on this. Therefore, most parents, if they can afford it, will choose a school of the highest quality for their child.

Thai international schools have been growing over the years. Back in the days, Thai citizens that held a Thai Passport didn’t have the right to study at an international school. Now we see that Thai schools are flourishing with Thai students thanks to Ms. Anand Panyarachun, the former prime minister and the former Permanent Secretary of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs. She has unlocked Thai families’ access to international schools. As a result, in 1990, Thai international schools gradually started growing.

Dr. Temyot Paladejpong, executive director of DBS Denla British School International School, added that over the past five years, 10 more ingternational schools have opened their doors in Bangkok. With an average growth of 9%, according to the International School Association of Thailand, Bangkok has the highest growth number of all Thai international schools in Southeast Asia.

Dr. Temyot Paladepong, Executive Director of DBS Denla British School International School

“Currently, there are more than 200 international schools, of which 73 are premium schools, or 36% of them. It is expected that there will be further growth in the future. As modern parents tend to invest more in education for their children. Some of them are popular with international schools. because they are confident in laying the foundation for children to develop their potential to become adults who are ready to compete in both business and life,” says Dr. Temyot Paladejpong

Dr. Temyot continued that modern day parents open up and encourage their children to find their own strenghts. There has been a shift in mentality from the past that they would send their children to any school when they were young, then when they grow up, they will send them to a good university, but now they think they need to invest from the start. They have more of a ‘Invest now to harvest in the future.’ Which means investing in education for your children today and provide children with knowledge and skills in all areas from young on. So that they can grow out to be quality individuals, well-equipped in all areas in life, and highly successful.

When asked about the criteria of the current school market that influence decision-making Asst. Prof. Dr. Toryot revealed that there are three main aspects:

1. Location, especially parents with young children. They don’t want their children to travel more than 30 minutes, no matter how high the quality of the school is.

2. Curriculum Not all international schools are regulated as to what courses are taught. But most of the most popular courses are those from England. More than 50% are used, followed by the American curriculum and the German education system’s IB (INTERNATIONAL BAACCALAUREATE) program. The latter two courses are similar in popularity. When parents choose an educational institution for their child, they need to look at the details of which one to choose.

3. Continuity of education Study long term from kindergarten to high school. I think the 3 most important points in terms of advantages.

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