An International School is defined as a school which promotes ‘International Education‘ in an international environment by adopting an international curriculum or by following a national curriculum which is different from that followed in other schools in that country. These schools were originally designed to cater for students who were not nationals of the host country and were children of staff working in international businesses, international organizations, foreign embassies, missionary programs or missions in another country.
The first few international schools were established in the latter half of 19th century in Japan, Switzerland, and Turkey catering to children of parents who were constantly on the move. American diplomats and missionaries set up schools to educate their children based on American Curriculum while French diplomats and business families founded similar schools based on French Curriculum. The United Nations International School-UNIS was established in 1947 by a group of parents to promote international education for their children while preserving their diverse cultural heritage.
According to a survey conducted in 2007, there were as many as 4,179 ‘English speaking International Schools’ in India. With globalization influencing many spheres of life, this number has only been growing. Many parents aspire to put their children in these international schools to give them an opportunity to learn foreign languages like French, Spanish, and German and so on and to obtain qualifications for seeking employment or higher education in a foreign country.
In a global economy, improvement of life for future generations is not restricted to national standards alone. Education likewise can not exist solely on a national level. It is accepted globally that the best performing education system internationally will provide the benchmark for success. With an increase in the number of people moving all over the globe for employment, a need has been created for a generation of children growing up and residing in foreign countries. This has created and expanded the market for international schools which can cater to their educational needs.
Like other schools, international schools teach subjects including mathematics, arts, science, humanities, information-technology, physical education and design technology. Parents should be cautious while going through the ‘Prospectus’ of the international school.