Table of International Schools
Below, Thailand Guru has a big table of international schools in Thailand, but before viewing it, you should read all this text above it.
What is called an "international school" in Thailand may not be so international, as there is no black-and-white criteria for a school to be called an "international school". There is a grey area. The main criteria could be:
While many of the schools listed below have a majority foreign student population, many others have less than 20% foreign students but follow an American or British curriculum and style and teach classes in the English language. Many Thai parents want their children to go to a private school and be taught in a foreign style rather than the rote methods in Thai government schools.
As an alternative to "international school", the phrase "bilingual school" has been used for a second category of schools with predominantly Thai student populations taught in English, with varying curricula and ratios of foreign teachers. Unfortunately, many schools have advertised themselves as "international schools" while I would call them "bilingual schools" by my criteria. An advertisement with foreign students pictured could just bee a photo taken from the web for the advertisement, not an actual student there. They may also highlight their few foreign students. My list below does not list many of these bilingual schools, instead emphasizing international schools, but I am open to listing any school which I can visit and get an impression of.
The original Thailand Guru table was compiled in 1999, and I have added and dropped some schools based on feedback from website visitors, reviewing quasi-official lists on the internet (which I double-checked item by item), search engines and indexes (Google, MSN, Yahoo, etc.), and a hardcover book I have on international schools in Thailand (now out of print, but available for viewing in the Thailand Guru office, a few occasional editions, and it's not complete...).
Notably, there are a lot of poorly maintained lists out on the internet. An example is the list of 43 international schools on the Thai government's Ministry of Education website at www.moe.go.th/English/list_sch.htm which doesn't provide website links (just addresses, phone numbers, and tidbits) and misses some major schools in the ISAT list discussed below.
The best list I've found (all considered) has 92 schools, on the International Schools Association of Thailand (ISAT) website, which is a generally informative website at www.isat.or.th, giving you a standard information page on each member school's purpose, student age range, tuition fees, accredited by, and a short summary on each school, plus the key email and website info. ISAT was founded in 1994 and membership has skyrocketed from 19 member schools when I first compiled this school list around the year 2000 to about 92 ISAT member schools by 2013, and it appears that every major international school has finally coughed up its dues to get on the list, some with private gripes about ISAT and questioning what they do with all the money coming in from those dues. (Referencing ISAT here does not imply that I recommend sticking to ISAT member schools. I reference their website simply because it has a standard format for comparing schools, and is an established organization whose mandate is to provide information on multiple international schools in Bangkok and therefore shouldn't be a transient or expeditiously compiled source.) For members of ISAT, I have included a shortcut link to the ISAT page on that particular school.
A problem with kindergartens is that too many essentially Thai language kindergartens are calling themselves "international" even though some are little more than floundering places with nannies. If I included all the "international" kindergartens, my list would be way too long, and indeed I trimmed down the list of kindgergartens to those with decent websites and/or those recommended by parents I've spoken to (especially from our real estate business) and website visitor feedback.
The list on this website is only intended to give you a short list of schools to consider, narrowed down by your home region, child's age, cost, and language or curriculum. From there, you should click on their websites, and of course visit your shortlist of schools and take a close independent look for yourself. You should discuss with them issues such as native English teachers, student nationality mix, staff and management, transport for students, and parental involvement events, which are usually not discussed on their websites.
In person, I can give more customized feedback, but I really don't want to put much in writing here because if I expand to another level of detail for some schools, then I may as well write a book on international schools here in order to be fair to all of the schools, but I don't want to reinvent the wheel. (I have such a book in my office, on international schools in Thailand, written by a fairly unbiased professional. Unfortunately, it's out of print and a few years old.)
On another website, I have a map of Bangkok to show the relative locations of international schools in Bangkok. However, these two websites are not linked.
This is all a lot of work, so the feedback is appreciated in more ways than one!
Below is a table of more than 100 international and quality bilingual schools -- all of those which I have become aware of and tracked for more than 10 years (minus some which died or otherwise don't seem to me to be of interest to the vast majority of visitors, but please point out to me any good ones I've missed).
Column 3 has the general nationality curriculum and style -- British, American, German, French, etc.
Many of these schools also offer the International Bacclaureate, presumably as approved by the International Bacclaureate Organization at www.ibo.org . I often use the acronym IB for International Bacclaureate.
Browsing the schools' websites, the fees have often been unclear, and this is the one part of my table which I urge you to clarify by contacting the schools directly. Over the years, I have contacted some and clarified things, but then again, fees quickly become outdated.
Column 5 is the per "term" or "semester" (/T), or per year (/Y), cost x 1000 Thai baht, e.g., 120-240K means 120,000 to 240,000 Thai baht. There are usually 2 or 3 terms per year, but it varies by curriculum and school, so in some cases I put in, for example, 120K/Tx3 which means 120,000 baht per term x 3 terms.
Most schools also require an "application fee" or "registration fee" for first time students. I've put that with a /R for Registration, e.g., 220K/R
There may be additional textbook, food, computer facility, library, school "development", and other fees. Make sure you find out *all* fees -- one-time up front costs, recurrent per term costs, and any other fees -- on paper or by email, stating there are no more significant hidden costs.
In my table, most records are still unclear about fees, so for 2011 I would like to start soliciting visitor feedback, so that I can clean up that one column of the table, and hopefully make things clearer quicker to newcomers. I've put in what I've picked up from their websites and some phone calls, but some of this information is very old, going back to the turn of the century, whereas other information is relatively recent as of 2013.
To convert Thai Baht (THB) into your own currency, see the calculator at OANDA.
Note: Information on one particular school, St. Andrews, can at first be a little bit confusing in that it's not really a chain in which all six schools are owned or run by the same organization, but is three different groups, kind've a 3+2+1 situation. Three of the St. Andrews schools are operated by the British education company Cognita (which has 65 schools worldwide), which are the Sukhumvit 107 campus (right at the Bearing BTS skytrain station), the Sathorn city center campus, and the provincial Rayong campus, but Cognita has nothing to do with the other three locations. Two other St. Andrews campuses are owned by one group of Thais, The Sukhumvit 71 and Dusit campuses (each having a different mix of Thai owners but are related) and the two locations share a website. The St. Andrews Samakee campus has still different ownership and a separate website from the others, but ISAT has the wrong St. Andrews website for the Samakee campus as of February 2013, erroneously pointing towards the Cognita group. While the St. Andrews expat-to-Thai student ratio is around 60:40 for the Cognita schools, the number may vary for the others.
The table is organized by region.
Central Bangkok schools not far from skytrain: Sukhumvit, Ploenchit, Silom, Sathorn schools
You may also want to browse condos, apartments, and houses near the skytrain courtesy of kkBkk.com
The above website for kkBkk.com is for the main business of mine, which supports this website, ThailandGuru.com , so I would appreciate it if you would give my company, Prado Property Co., Ltd., a chance to find an apartment, condominium, or house for your family to rent. Our main office is located in the Ploymitr Building of Sukhumvit soi 2, but we can meet you anywhere in the greater Bangkok metropolitan region, such as at your hotel or workplace.
Location School Name Curriculum Ages Website ISAT riverside, Charoen Krung Shrewsbury International School British 1-13 314-479K riverside, Charoen Nakorn International Pioneers School British 2-12 65-75/y Sathorn 4 St. Andrews Intl School Sathorn British 2-12 54-139/T Sathorn, Yen Akart 2 Garden International School British 2-18 15-360/y Sathorn, Yen Akart Noddy Play Group 3-6 No Sathorn, Yen Akart 2 Acacia native French, English 1-10 No Sathorn Nang Linchee Learning Home International Kindergarten British 1-5 35-94 Narathiwas New Sathorn International School 0-0 Sathorn International Community School - ICS Prong Jai American Christian 4-18 Sathu Pradit Sarasas Ektra School native English 1-11 No
riverside, Charoen Krung
Shrewsbury International School
riverside, Charoen Nakorn
International Pioneers School
St. Andrews Intl School Sathorn
Sathorn, Yen Akart 2
Garden International School
Sathorn, Yen Akart
Noddy Play Group
Sathorn, Yen Akart 2
native French, English
Sathorn Nang Linchee
Learning Home International Kindergarten
New Sathorn International School
International Community School - ICS Prong Jai
Sarasas Ektra School
Bangkok quasi-central (north): Vipawadi, HwayKwang
There is a section here on Thailand Guru which introduces you to neighborhoods and the environment in the nicest part of the above region near the French Lycee School, Kesinee International School (KIS), and Keerapat School, where there are nice gated neighborhoods with houses for rent.
Bangkok southeast and eastern suburbs: BangNa, Samut Prakarn, SriNakarin, Patanakarn
There is a ThailandGuru section introducing this region of Bang Na and Samut Prakarn, and if you're looking for a place to live then see kkBkk.com which has a list of houses in the Bang Na, Samut Prakarn, and Sri Nakarin region.
There is a ThailandGuru section about this region of Bangkapi and Minburi, and if you're looking for a home to live in, then see kkBkk.com which has a list of kkBkk.com has a list of houses for rent in the Bangkapi-Minburi suburban region of Bangkok.
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