Of all the tasks that must be completed to help your family settle into their new life in this huge city working out how to find the best international schools in Beijing will be one of the most stressful! There you go, I said it! It’s ok, take a deep breath, sit back and think about what it is that you want in a school.
A fool-proof guide to how to find the best international schools in Beijing
The answer could be as simple as asking the wider expat community, the other moms and dads that live near you, or if you have yet to arrive in Beijing, your future employers. Many employment packages have education stipends linked to particular schools, in which case, the decision may already have been made for you. While others set aside a certain amount to cover school fees, or in some cases you might get no financial support at all.
In this case, when thinking about how to find the best international schools in Beijing you need to identify what it is you want for your kids. Whereas some people focus on a school that will ensure the mental wellbeing of your kids, there are also many schools that place physical wellbeing as a top priority.
One of the major downsides of living in Beijing is the air quality. While we can install air purifiers at home, and make sure our kids wear masks on really bad days, we also need assurance that they will be protected from the smog while they are at school. Lots of international schools in Beijing have oxygen tents that cover outside spaces, so that sports and outdoor activities can still go ahead. When drawing up a short list of schools, make sure to ask if they have any equipment to protect your kids on smoggy days, and if not what precautions they take on really polluted days. As well as outdoor purifying equipment, be sure to ask about indoor equipment, too, and whether the school tracks the AQI. Some schools may shut on really toxic days, so another question should be about how parents are informed of this.
The key to how to find the best international schools in Beijing is patience. Don’t be discouraged by the sheer number of options, just be sure to know what it is that you want from schools, and don’t be afraid to ask questions.