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9 Differences Between an International School and a National School

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These are the main questions that enter parents’ minds come the time that they need to decide on their child’s education. This is the case because the education that your child will experience today will dictate the brightness of their future. This is why this decision is highly important. It can make or break your child’s potential for success. 

When deciding if an international school is best for your child, you simply need to know the difference between a national school and an international school. This article will do just that. Reading this article will inform you on:

  • what an international school is
  • what a national school is
  • the main differences between an international school and a national school 

What is an international school?

An international school is one that teaches international education in an international atmosphere. They adopt an international curriculum and use English as the primary language in teaching. To be a legitimate international school, one has to comply with the requisites mandated by the International Association of School Librarianship (IASL). A legitimate international school should also be accredited by international organizations such as the Council of International Schools or the Council of British International Schools. International schools are non-discriminatory. They are open to children of all races, gender, or ethnicity. 

What is a national school?

A national school is one that is financed, administered, and managed by a State. It follows a curriculum that is provided by the government. 

9 Differences Between an International School and a National School

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The following are the main differences between an international school and a national school: 

#1: Multi-cultural and inclusive learning.

International school education will allow your child to learn from different cultures. Your child will not be limited when it comes to cultural exposure. International schools expose students to different cultures from all over the globe. National school education does not focus on this and can only ever give this through passages in textbooks. 


#2: Global training.

International schools provide a kind of education that prepares children to become competent global citizens. This is why graduates of international schools easily get admitted to foreign universities like Harvard, Oxford, and Yale. This is the case because international schools offer an international curriculum that greatly matches the demand and level of excellence of foreign universities. National schools don’t use an international curriculum. 


#3: Diversity.

Your child will be exposed to diversity in an international school. He or she will have classmates and teachers of different nationalities. International schools zone in on recruiting expert educators from different parts of the world to ensure that students get used to a lifestyle where people come from different nations, cultures, and beliefs. One example is a British international school in Bangkok, Bangkok Prep, that hires excellent educators from all over the world that come from different cultural, national, and religious backgrounds. Such is not the case in national schools that primarily hire local teachers.

#4: Career opportunities.

An international school education would also open your child to more career opportunities in the future. Through an international school, your child will have access to global networks that offer varied opportunities in different fields. A robust academic network will always back up your child every step of the way. National schools don’t offer many network connections on an international level.


#5: Language Study

International schools offer language subjects that allow students to master Japanese, French, German, Spanish, etc with optimum ease. They hire native expert teachers that can fully train your child in mastering different foreign languages. National schools don’t usually offer such language subjects.


#6: Curriculum

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Your child will not be following a national curriculum if he or she will be enrolled in an international school. He or she will be following a curriculum that students in highly advanced countries use like Edexcel, International Baccalaureate, International Primary Curriculum, and Cambridge Assessment International School. National schools don’t offer such options as they follow ones that are strictly mandated by the government. 


#7: Facilities

International schools have advanced and world-class facilities for students. Students will get to enjoy Olympic-size swimming pools, skating rinks, smart classrooms, multiple libraries, and interactive laboratories. All buildings will be well-ventilated and equipped with top-of-the-line educational tools. Each child will have access to world-class technologies for boosted and advanced learning. National schools are often financed by the government so students cannot expect to experience world-class facilities and advanced educational tools. 

#8: Teacher-student Ratio

Students in international schools are fully taken care of because a healthy level of teacher-student ratio is always maintained. International school students always get the proper amount of guidance, mentoring, and support from all teachers. Smart classrooms in international schools don’t have a large number of students. Such is not the case in national schools as most are highly populated. 


#9: Expense

As international schools use different teaching methods, tools, and facilities, parents who enroll their children in one need to spend more on education. International school education is more expensive than national school education. Some national schools even offer free schooling. Such is not the case with international schools as they require high tuition fees. National schools are the more affordable option when it comes to education. 

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I am a student working as a content writer since my college days. This has often served as my flexibility. I have appeared in many government recruitment exams including SSC, Banking, Railway, WBPSC, and many more. Alas! I have not made it to the final merit list for anyone; I am still an active government job aspirant. The best part is that you have got such a mixed experience of content writing and government exams. I write this content so that lakhs of job aspirants like me can benefit from it. I hope that my government exam material will be the connecting link between aspiration for a government job and the actual selection.

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