Secure a place in a Foreign School
There are times when it may be necessary for you to relocate aboard, be it for work or personal reasons and in doing so it is important to look at the aspects of finding and securing a place for your child in a foreign school should the need arise.The first thing to remember about placing your child in a foreign school is the difference in curriculum. We have a specific article dealing with this, which you can find on this website.
ConsiderationsFirstly it is wise to find out about the schools in the locale you are moving to just as you would if you were placing your child in a school in the United Kingdom. Once you have chosen your list of schools – and again it is a good idea to have more than one choice given that places will be limited and more than likely offered to local students before they will be to foreign students – you can contact the schools directly and ask for information on their selection processes and also the process of admittance for foreign students.
Again it is important to note that not all foreign schools can – or will – cater for the introduction of foreign students so therefore in some countries and locales the choices of school is greatly limited in this regard. Speaking with the consulate and liasing with the country to which you are moving will be advantageous in that they will be able to provide you with a list of schools offering something resembling the United Kingdom’s National Curriculum.
Once you have done this it is worth visiting the schools in the locale to which you are relocating. Obviously you will have already – or will be in the process of – visiting the place to where you will relocate to view potential homes so coinciding this with a visit to the schools on your list is a worthwhile endeavour also. Again this is something that needs to be done well in advance of your child actually commencing school abroad, the longer you leave it the lesser your chances of securing that place for them.
You will need to spend time talking to the teachers and head teachers at your chosen schools and if your child is already in education in the United Kingdom it is important to find out how easily they can make the transition from being taught at National Curriculum level to being taught at the level of the education system in the country you are moving to.
Again it is also important to find out if your child’s lessons will be taught in English as many countries abroad teach English as a second language and therefore this will present a major obstacle in your child’s education if they are constantly met with a difference in languages.
Also try and find out if there is an Ex-Pat’s Association in or around the area into which you are moving. If you can find such an organisation you will find the help and advice they have to offer invaluable as most of them will have been through the same experiences as you as a parent and will be able to point you in the right direction. They may even be able to recommend a school and perhaps make an introduction, which may prove fruitful in your attempts to place your child in a school abroad.