With the rapid development of China’s economy and the increase in demand for high-end education, China’s international school market has great potential. China is the world’s largest country for international schools. Based on China’s market-specific conditions, the market demand is still on an exponential rise. As a high-end education model, with the increase in demand, the international school is attracting more and more investors in favor of education.
International School in China
International schools in China can be divided into four categories. International schools in China first appeared in the middle of the last century, the emergence of the early international schools was mainly to provide the children of the embassy staff with relative education, such as the Swedish school and the Korean school. It was not until the end of twentieth Century it began to receive the children of non-embassy staff. These international schools could only accept children of workers living in Hong Kong, Macao, and Taiwan or foreign workers living in China. Later on, schools that both be able to recruit Chinese local students and foreign students appeared. This kind of school uses the international curriculum with the International Baccalaureate Diploma Programme (IBDP) and has independent campuses. In those International School, the curriculum system, the educational ideas, the hardware facility and the student constitution are all international. Such as Guangzhou Alcanta International Preparatory School, which have 30% of International Student, with an IBDP curriculum system and a full English teaching program all by foreign teachers. Private international schools in China reached the number of 256 in 2015. Another type of school, is the International Department of public schools, in the form of Chinese-Foreign Cooperation. The AP (Advanced Placement) curriculum and A-level (Advancement level) are extra training courses for students in China. At present, Beijing and Shanghai have more than 20 projects of this kind and there are 225 programs all over the China. The fourth type is the tutorial center held by foreign institutions or individuals.
China has the most international schools in the world. By 2015, The total amount reached 597. According to geographical distribution, Beijing, Shanghai and Guangdong take predominance in the quantities of international schools as the economy is relatively developed. As for the distribution of grade section, the school that only accept foreign children contains comprehensive education from elementary school, junior high school to high school. Many schools have set up the education system from kindergarten to high school. On the contrary, the majority of private schools are from junior high school and high school, the primary school stage has 59% of the school. Public international classes are all well established in high school.
In 2005, the government issued the “Regulation of PRC for Chinese-Foreign Cooperation in Running Schools”, the public schools began to hold international classes with an explosive growth in 2010. Five years later from, the Ministry of education has begun to restrict the development of the public international class. Now Shanghai and Beijing will no longer approve public international class, so it is quite difficult to hold public international classes for the next few years while Private international schools have recently reached a rapid development stage.
The Rising Demand for International School in China
The demand for seats in the international school has risen sharply. This is partly because most of the Chinese schools do not accept foreign students. As more and more foreigners living in Shanghai, Beijing and other first-tier and second-tier cities, foreign parents have to send their children to international school. Another reason is from the Chinese parents, with strong economic ability. Many Chinese parents take into consideration the English teaching curriculum, with high-tech facilities and high-quality teaching method of international schools.
International School Industry has great potential for Investment
Some capitals flow into international school market recently, such as real estate companies. By 2017, Zhong Tai bridge will invest 1 billion 200 million yuan for the construction of Wen Kaixing International School, and the enrollment rate is expected to reach 100% after 5 years operation with 430 million net profit respectably. Yin Run capital will also invest in two international schools in Beijing. There will be at least ten international schools established in Beijing the next five years. Real estate companies began to enter the education industry. Vanke Group gradually establishes many schools in China, such as Shenzhen Vanke Meisha Academy in 2015. Therefore, the field from the real estate to education will flourish in the next five years.
International Departments of public School transferring into a private school has become a trend. In 2014, Beijing No.4 High School issued an official statement, the original public international class shift to private school as Chia-Lian schools. In future, the outbreak of private schools will come from the capital, the real estate, and the public transfer.
The internationalization of Chinese public education is far away. In the tide of globalization, China needs more talented persons who have an international vision, language abilities, and the understanding of cultural diversity. While the traditional education in China is still in the examination stage, the students generally lack of practice. Indeed, from primary school to university, campus cultural diversity is somehow inadequate.
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