When bringing children on an international assignment, finding the right school is one of the top challenges to be managed. We’ve put together a list of questions we believe are important to address before choosing from the existing schooling options.
Is the right curriculum available?
Most larger assignment destinations do have schools with the most common curriculums, such as The International Baccalaureate or the American High-School curriculum. Yet, for assignments at other, smaller, destinations the only available school might be a public school with the local curriculum.
So, what to do if the assignment destination doesn’t offer the preferred curriculum? This is a situation that occurs from time to time. Perhaps more often when older children (rather than young children) accompany their parents on an international assignment. In some cases pupils can switch from one curriculum to another.
But. It is always up to the school to decide whether this is possible or not. If not, it might be needed to discuss the possibility of letting the children stay in the home country to finish their studies.
What if the school only offers a two-year curriculum?
Sometimes switching from a four-year curriculum – such as the American High-School curriculum – to a two-year curriculum such as the IB-program is necessary. Yet, it can be associated with some challenges. Getting the timing right is very important. To avoid gaps, try to match the start of the assignment with the school-start. Or, if that is not possible, try finding another solution. Mabye its possible to move ahead of the rest of the family for a period of time before school starts.
When to apply for schools for an international assignment?
It might take time to find the right school, with the right curriculum. Therefore, make sure to check what is required as early on as possible and prepare the necessary documents.
Things to consider:
- What kind of school papers need translation to another language before applying?
- Do the children’s grades need to be translated from the current school system, or curriculum, to the other?
- Do the translations need to be validated by a third party?
Does the company cover the costs?
The compulsory starting age for school differs between countries, ranging between five and seven years old. Find out from what age the company supports with school during the assignment and what limits that might apply.
Private school vs public school during the assignment?
In some countries the public school system is comparable to the private schools. At other destinations the only plausible alternatives are found in the private sector. The costs associated with sending children to school, of course, differ substantially. Public schools are, normally, more easy on the wallet. Yet, private schools are in many cases more aquatinted with the needs of international students.
Want to know more?
Please don’t hesitate to contact us if you need more information regarding schooling.