A qualified international school of Ho Chi Minh City needs to meet international accreditation requirements for its teachers, facilities, curriculum and qualifications. Among them, the curriculum is the most important factor
Ms. Huynh Thanh Phuong (living in Go Vap District, Ho Chi Minh City) spent 2 months looking for a school with international standard for her child in grade 1, in order to start the new school year in time. Phuong shared that she wants her children to become global citizens, be good at foreign languages, and internationally valuable qualifications. However, how to choose an international school to be right, without risk and without interruption while her child is studying, makes Phuong confused.
Based on the curriculum
One of the factors that parents care about when choosing an international school of Ho Chi Minh City is the curriculum, as it reflects the content and learning style of a school.
Independent education expert Bui Khanh Nguyen has done extensive research in bilingual education and international schools, stating that a school is called international when it does not teach the national curriculum in the host country and achieves the international inspection requirements. In theory, in addition to public schools, the education management agency in Ho Chi Minh City only recognizes schools with foreign elements and private schools. In these schools, there are a few that offer an integrated or fully international international program and award foreign degrees, so parents are used to calling them international and bilingual schools.
According to Mr. Bui Khanh Nguyen, parents can choose an international school of Ho Chi Minh City based on the curriculum because it is almost the “heart and brain” of each school. For high school, parents can choose from schools that offer American Baccalaureate, British and Cambridge programs, IB International Baccalaureate programs, and online schools. In particular, online schools are completely unfamiliar to Vietnamese parents, but this is the optimal choice at a time when the Covid-19 epidemic is complicated.
“While international schools directly collect tuition fees in a face-to-face manner, but most still teach online because of the Covid-19 epidemic, online international schools have a clear advantage in terms of attractive tuition fees. The output level is the same, all are British or American degrees or accredited schools. Online international school students also learn with native teachers, using completely standard English, choosing subjects fully and able to interact with friends from all countries” – Mr. Nguyen informed.
Quality of teachers and tuition fees
Besides the curriculum, the quality of teachers is also an important factor to help parents assess whether an international school of Ho Chi Minh City is qualified or not. And an appropriate tuition fee is a prerequisite for parents to choose to stick with the school, avoiding the risks of conflicting tuition fees.
Ms. Nguyen Khanh Hoa, Head of Marketing and Communication Department of International School Saigon Pearl (HCMC), said that prestigious international schools often have strict teacher selection processes. Teachers need not only satisfactory qualifications and certifications, but also global criminal background checks and regular training in child protection, health and safety. Parents can check this information when visiting the school.
Besides, one of the important criteria to evaluate a truly international school is based on whether the school is certified by international accreditation organizations. To maintain this certification, schools must always work to ensure the quality of teaching and other mandatory conditions such as the quality of teachers and facilities.
“There is no best school, only the most suitable school. When choosing an international school, it is important that parents make a long-term study plan for their child, know where their child is and what they need to choose an international school. The school is suitable for the child and family situation in the long-term,” noted Ms. Hoa.
The Principal of an international school in District 7, Ho Chi Minh City also said that parents should learn deeply about the school’s tuition fees and related policies such as the annual increase, the plan to adjust the tuition fee when there are problems occurs, etc., choose schools with appropriate tuition fees that can pay for their children to study for 12 years.
“In fact, international schools tend to increase tuition fees every year, from 10% to 15%/year. Under normal conditions, many parents do not pay attention to this because the increase is within the range of possible. But in the past 2 years, the Covid-19 epidemic has affected the economy of many families, this increase makes parents unable to manage, forced to transfer schools for their children. There are some unfortunate cases. is a student who is “dropped out” because the parents are in conflict with the school when they do not receive the sharing. Therefore, parents should choose a school that is economically suitable to ensure that even in the event of an incident, students can study. Students can continue to study,” the Principal shared.
Choose a school 3 months in advance
According to Ms. Nguyen Khanh Hoa, although many schools enroll year-round, parents should research and choose a school for their children at least 3 months before each semester. Because after applying, students often have to go through entrance tests and interviews before being officially admitted. In the process, if the student is not admitted, the family still has time to find another school for their child.