International schools: Which countries offer the most affordable international education?
February 3, 2017
International school fees are steadily rising and when choosing the best schooling for your children. you should not only consider the school fees but also other hidden costs, such as inflation and incidental costs (meals, uniforms, etc.).
The last Expatfinder.com results on international school fees have shed light on the difficulties that expats might experience when choosing an international school for their children. After having surveyed more than 707 international schools across 98 countries, the study shows that the cheapest countries for international education are Chile, India, Zambia, Ireland and Qatar. On the other hand, the most expensive international schools are found in China (US$36,400 annually), Switzerland (US$28,300 annually) and Belgium (US$27,800 per annum).
Among the several factors that can contribute to these prices, there is “school nationality”. According to the study, American schools tend to be the most expensive ones, while Spanish schools the most affordable. The location is also a key factor as prices can vary heavily depending on whether the school is placed in the capital or in a smaller town. In the case of France, there is a 100.2% price increase between international schools located in Paris and international schools in Lille, in the north of the country.
Based on these results, three recommendations can be made:
1) As school fees increased 3.43% in 2016 compared with 2015, it might be worth to ask the prospective schools the expected fee rise for the upcoming years before making any final decision.
2) When considering the costs of international schools, not only take into account the fees (application, registration, admission), but also other additional costs such as meals, transport or extracurricular activities.
3) Due to the fee increases, many families consider alternative schooling options such as local schooling (sometimes with additional private tuition in the country of origin language). Some parents also decide to take charge of their children education by doing home-schooling.