Lots of expat families choose to live in Shunyi, as this is where some of the best Beijing international schools are located. This might mean a long commute to work for mom and dad but, by-and-large, many families agree that it is worth it. Not only are the schools a major draw, but there is a real feeling of community in Shunyi and there are lots of opportunities for kids and parents alike to socialize.
Beijing has an extensive range of international schools to choose from, and while many parents feel spoilt for choice it can be difficult to make a decision. Beijing international schools can be roughly divided into three groups. The first offers an environment similar to the education system of a certain country, with Chinese and English as additional subjects rather than the language of instruction. The second will teach predominantly in English but also have a bilingual stream, too, and offer different curricula, so that students can choose the route that is suitable to them. The final group is much more geared toward mastery of the Chinese language and lessons will be instructed more in Chinese as students progress through the school grades.
What’s special about Beijing international schools?
For parents wanting their kids to gain as much exposure to the local culture and language as possible Beijing boasts some exceptional bilingual schools. These schools are perfect for families who have relocated from elsewhere in China, and their kids are already confident speakers of Chinese, or for those who will be in China for the long term.
As a center for business and culture, people from all walks of life move to Beijing, as a result the student bodies of Beijing international schools are renowned for being culturally diverse. This is a great environment for expat kids as it helps them to develop a confident, socially conscious mindset, and reminds them of their role as global citizens. These very important skills will not only help them to succeed academically, but also to excel in their chosen professional later in life.