How new Chinese schools are set to Cause UK fee Increases

An article published recently in The PIE News by Patrick Atack outlines how international Chinese schools are changing schooling in their country.

They referenced a report from British research firm ISC Research which outlined how there’s been a move towards “an international style of education” in China, along with a noticeable increase in the amount of Chinese children joining immigrant communities in the new schools.

Strong building programme

The report identified that 228 new institutions had opened during the previous 5 years into 2018, resulting in a current total of 857, with a further 48 scheduled for completion in the next few years.

The above mentioned 5 year period has seen a 64% increase in (245,500) in the number of students enrolled in international private K-12 education in China.

The ownership of the new schools has also hiked the number of Chinese-owned private schools offering an international education to 563.

“The new guidelines provide greater clarity for foreign schools and suppliers wishing to benefit from China’s expanding private education market.

However, investment in schools accessible to Chinese children is only possible by Chinese investors, with the contracting of foreign independent school brands via service agreements.”

ISC Research schools director Richard Gaskell

The enrolment rates discovered by ISC Research as similarly impressive, and explain the rapid school building that took place.

It’s noticeable that within Chinese families private education expenditure has risen, in part due to a rise in prosperity across the country.

Wealthy parents from every country, it seems, are always willing to pay for the best education for their children.

Concerns, exist, therefore, as to whether any step-change in China’s financial situation will have an impact on attendance levels at this many new schools.

All parents want the best for their children

It’s clear that if Chinese parents can secure an international education at a home-based institution, that option will have a significant draw, whatever financial turmoil might affect Chinese corporations.

Changes from the old ‘one child’ policy allied to more Chinese parents recognising the benefits of an international education have occurred parallel to changes enabling foreign investors to become involved with new Chinese schools.

There is evidence to show that the current wave of parents putting their children through schooling have a preference for a bi-cultural or dual-cultural education, as opposed to a strict Chinese-only model.

“Investment in schools Chinese children attend is only possible by Chinese investors”

It would appear that Chinese parents want their children to develop a strong knowledge of their country’s culture and history whilst also developing skills that will serve them well across an international stage.

Key UK private independent schools are leading the field in supporting the development of these new international schools, which is all the more understandable since many have developed links with China over many years already.

It appears that Tier One cities such as Shanghai and Beijing have been the locations for the first new international schools, but that’s now changing, with smaller cities such as Jiangsu and Zhejiang having schools built within them.

What have you noticed?

It’s going to be interesting to see whether over time there is a reduction in the amount of Chinese pupils wishing to attend UK private schools, or whether having the international schools in their own country leads to a net increase in pupils across all schools.

  • Have you noticed any changes in the amount of Chinese pupils at your private school?
  • Are you a Chinese parent (or pupil) and if so would consider a new international school based on Chinese home soil over an international school in the US or UK?

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