Local school or international school?

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Local school or international school? Empty Local school or international school?

Post  Boa73 on Wed Apr 11, 2012 7:16 pm


We are possibly relocating on an expat mission and I would love to hear your opinion on whether to choose a local school or an international school? How did you choose whether to "go native" or not? What should I take into consideration when choosing the school? Sorry for the vague question, at this point I'm still just thinking about the question on a general level.

I would also love to hear how you've kept your native language alive for yourself and your children on an expat mission...

thanking you in advance,



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Local school or international school? Empty Local or international school

Post  Admin on Wed Apr 18, 2012 6:47 pm

I am currently writing a relocation guide for Nairobi - so am quite well up on the school situation here. Not sure if this is where you would be based.

Basically, you will end up choosing a private school for your children - with the best will in the world - government schools are only really an option for the lowest income bracket in Kenya and most people in Nairobi choose 'private' schooling of some description according to what they can afford. There is a huge, growing middle class in Kenya, where parents have opted out of the local '8-4-4' system and instead chosen a British or International curriculum school - which will then slot their children into university overseas, if they choose to follow this route.

When you choose a private school, you will find that (regardless of the religious denomination of the school) there are Asian, African and some Western students enrolled at the top end schools - so it will be a highly international experience for your kids, whatever you do.

There are actually specifically subsidised mission schools here and many other private schools also offer favourable fees to missionaries - so don't be discouraged by the high fees of some establishments. (Mission schools - Rosslyn Academy, www.rosslynacademy.com - West Nairobi School www.westnairobischool.org). Kenton College offers a special rate for missionaries.

The private schools range widely in price - but they offer a good quality education. Many of them follow a British curriculum. I am thinking of putting school listings on my blog - keep checking. If you want any more specific information then let me know.

My kids go to a private primary school - their friends are Kenyan, Indian/Asian and European - they mix on an absolutely equal footing - I guess because all of the parents come from a background where they can afford the school fees on some level. (many parents are on double income, for instance both professional/lawyers etc)

Hope that this clarifies things a little.


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