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Why is an International School in Kuala Lumpur Such a Popular Academic Option?

by Aslam Ali

International schools are schools that teach an international curriculum in English. Before, international schools were primarily located in non-English speaking environments, but today, you can also find them in Canada, the United States, the UK, and other English-speaking countries.


The modern international schools in Kuala Lumpur can offer various languages and programs. Different kinds of international schools can suit your child’s needs, from German-language medium schools to schools that follow American standards. In this guide, you will know what an international school is and what benefits it can provide.


History of International Lower Secondary Schools

About 25 years ago, there were thousands of English-language international schools worldwide. In 2020, there were almost 12,000 international schools with a total student body of around 6 million. International schools are becoming more popular daily due to their enhanced value in the domestic market.


The first international lower secondary school was established in 1924, and the concept of this school can be traced back to the 1800s that were set up by missionaries in Africa. International schools were established to provide the children of diplomats the same quality of education that they receive in their home country.  

In recent memory, the international student body has undergone a considerable change, with about 80% domestic students in markets. Most international schools follow the IB or adapted British/American curriculum, with about 80% domestic students in some markets. International schools in Kuala Lumpur deliver other curriculums and a combination of global and local content.


What Are the Differences between International Schools in Kuala Lumpur and Regular Schools?

Some of the differences between international and regular schools are as follows:

  • One of the main differences between international and regular schools, whether public or private, is the curriculum. The curriculum of international schools follows an international model, but children can give more importance to practical applications, socio-cultural studies, and greater independence.
  • International schools also have international staff members, and the jobs at international schools are prestigious, and teachers enjoy the benefits of travel, better access to technology, and better campuses. They also enjoy better pay and employment conditions than expected in their homes.
  • Another big difference between international and regular schools is the class size. Many international schools have a class size of about 20 students. This is much less than regular public and private schools, where the number of students doubles.
  • Another difference between International lower secondary schools and traditional schools is cost. As international schools are private, they are more costly than domestic ones.


In many countries and continents like Europe, education is free for all children, immigrants, and expatriates. The cost of tuition in an international school also differs depending on the country and location; it is costlier than a public school. 


Why Should You Choose an International School?


Other than smaller classes, international faculty, and curriculum, there are multiple reasons why you need to choose an international school for your child. They are as follows:

  • Practicality

If your or your partner’s job is mobile, international school education can be a better alternative for you than a regular school. Most international schools provide a standard curriculum that indicates that your child can continue their studies anytime, anywhere in this world. Though international lower secondary schools may not be ideal for your child’s learning, they can be less disruptive than in and out of local curriculums.


  • Global citizenship

Most students are from mobile families, so the school population is international and can change regularly. Students in an international school are exposed to various cultures, perspectives, and languages.


Students develop a better understanding and empathy for various backgrounds and worldviews. These skills can benefit today’s global community and international marketplace. An advantage of higher student turnover is that students can learn to accept, respect, and support new students in transitioning to a new school and environment. 


  • Quality

Regardless of your child’s country, the quality of education delivered across domestic schools can differ. When choosing an international school for your child, you can be assured that they will receive a quality education. International schools are reputed and have already passed quality testing by COBIS (The Council Of British International Schools), ECIS (European Council of International Schools), and CIS (Council of International Schools). In an international school, you can be assured that your child can be in a safe environment and gain a quality education.


Bottom Line


Enrolling your child in international schools in Kuala Lumpur has multiple benefits. One of them is that they can gain quality education and will mingle with people of different cultures; this will ensure that they will have broader thinking skills and learn to appreciate other people.

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