Private schools in Asia
Private schools offer exceptional approaches to completing a challenging curriculum. Source: GESS – International School

Examining the difference between private and public school education is an essential step to choosing the right high school. College placement rates and class sizes should be considered. Faculty and counselor availability should be evaluated. In many Asian capitals today, private schools are increasing — and surpassing the competition.

They offer exceptional approaches to education. Completing a challenging curriculum here entails taking it at an individualised pace through small class sizes that facilitate personal attention and communication.

At private schools, curious students and passionate teachers are brought together in a learning environment that values action, discovery, collaboration, and hard work. These schools have one common mission: to ignite the full academic potential of every student through rigorous academics, personalised instruction, a diverse global perspective and partnership with parents and the community. 

The value of participation in sports is broad-ranging and life-long, as athletes develop teamwork, organisational skills and leadership competence. Through organised and individual activities, students learn to set goals, develop the discipline required to meet them, and celebrate their achievements.

In Asia, here are four future focused schools that exemplify the best private schools have to offer:

GESS – International School

At GESS – International School, a not for profit institution run by elected parent representatives, all income is invested back to the school. This ensures uninterrupted inspiration.

Here, respect, openness and diversity are celebrated. The result? Confident, forward-looking pupils with the freedom to grow academically and in their areas of interests. “We observe these values in everything we do; from hiring staff, to dealing with multiculturalism in a sensitive way, to creating a safe space for students where we display and celebrate their diversity, and promoting intercultural dialogue,” shares Christof Martin, Principal of GESS.

Private schools in Asia

GESS pupils can take part in a richly-varied afternoon programme with over 90 activities to hone their interests and talents. Source: GESS – International School

GESS students come from over 66 countries, pushing boundaries and work towards their aspirations, big and small. An education here is more than just about shaping minds. GESS offers the German Curriculum and the International Baccalaureate (IB) taught in English. The full IB Curriculum — Primary Years Programme (PYP), Middle Years Programme (MYP) and Diploma Programme (DP) — is catered to international students from two years to 18 years, from preschool followed by primary school, middle school and high school.

There are integrated mother tongue language programmes in German, Danish and Dutch from Primary School to High School. Languages such as Spanish and Mandarin are offered from the Middle Years programme. These empower pupils to become multilingual global citizens.

The school’s Centre for Excellence is an initiative that shines light on all areas related to the sciences, engineering, technology, mathematics, arts, sports, music and more. The initiative trains students to think critically and communicate clearly about scientific topics, by encouraging curiosity and experimentation. Collaborations with Technical University of Munich (TUM) Asia and Junior Engineer Academy Network further expand its STEM offerings. GESS is also the only school outside Europe to offer the Junior Engineer Academy for students aspiring towards that field.

In addition to academic excellence, pupils have a community of support and can take part in a richly-varied afternoon programme with over 90 activities to hone their interests and talents, including athletics, badminton, basketball, football, running and so forth. To learn more about GESS’s proven high-quality approach to education, click here.

Nord Anglia International School Hong Kong

Private schools in Asia

NAIS’s STEAM education is in collaboration with the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT). Source: Nord Anglia International School Hong Kong

Nord Anglia International School (NAIS) Hong Kong is an international preschool, primary and secondary school that provides first-rate education to children of over 40 nationalities. The school is part of Nord Anglia Education (NAE) — a family of over 60 premium international schools in 29 countries. NAIS provides a welcoming and safe learning environment — both indoors and outdoors — in all three campus locations in Hong Kong.

Here, students enjoy a strong community atmosphere and a variety of pursuits in academics, athletics, arts, and service. The school offers an academically challenging international curriculum including the world-leading IB Diploma and IGCSE programmes as well as a selection of sports, creativity and community service activities. NAIS’s STEAM education is also conducted in collaboration with the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT).

Sport and extra-curricular activities foster team building and cooperation among students, as well as honing coordination and other spatial skills. Facilities, such as state-of-the-art science labs, libraries, an art studio, and outstanding sports halls, accommodate students’ passions and leisure activities. These, together with elements of the academic curriculum, are fully supported by up-to-date, well-maintained equipment as well as dedicated learning and practice spaces. 

British International School Phuket

Private schools in Asia

The value of participation in sports is broad and life-long, as athletes develop teamwork, organisational skills and leadership skills. Source: British International School Phuket

The British International School, Phuket is an English-medium, co-educational, day and boarding school in Phuket, Thailand. Everything BISP does is designed to make learning enjoyable and to give every child the opportunity to develop a sense of confidence in themselves. The school delivers high standards of teaching and learning to an international community. 

Here, faculty members teach an extensive and stimulating curriculum covering a wide range of subjects and skills. With a model for holistic learning aimed to develop the whole child, students are instilled with a lifelong love of learning through active engagement from early years to primary and secondary school. BIS Phuket students pursue a rigorous and challenging course of academic study that prepares them for success in the most competitive colleges and universities. 

The school’s community is diverse and facilities are enviable; art rooms, science labs, workshops, sports hall, gym and so forth — all set on a 44-acre campus. Beyond the classroom, BIS Phuket teaches its students to be responsible and caring, both inside the school, and as citizens of the city, nation, and world. 

Seoul Foreign School

Private schools in Asia

SFS prepares a diverse community of students for the lifelong transformation of self and the world with purpose, passion and perspective. Source: Seoul Foreign School

Inspiring excellence and building character since 1912, Seoul Foreign School challenges students of adventurous intellect and diverse backgrounds to think critically and creatively — preparing them for principled engagement in the world. Students are offered an unmatched, diverse educational experience in an environment that fosters self-confidence and the joy of learning.

Ultimately, the school’s charge is to prepare students for the world ahead. Here, students are guided by dedicated faculty members who are committed to excellence in education and provide a rich learning experience. Both the International Baccalaureate Continuum of Programmes and English National Curriculum are offered at SFS. 

Arts and athletics are a fundamental part of the overall educational experience at SFS — teaching students physical and mental skills, creativity and sportsmanship. SFS prepares a diverse community of students for the lifelong transformation of self and the world with purpose, passion and perspective.  

*Some of the institutions featured in this article are commercial partners of Study International