British schooling is popular all over the world and is ranked as the academic gold standard. Tuition fees at a traditional British boarding school in the United Kingdom range from 3,555 £ to 16,663 £ per term. The dominance of British schools in the global educational market is determined by centuries of experience, a stable teaching staff, excellent boarding houses located on English estates, caring staff, a high level of accommodation and food. Many parents dream of such an education for their children, but not everyone can afford to send their children to England.
Today, there are over 4,300 UK International Schools located outside the UK that teach curricula in whole or in part UK recognized in English and maintain the spirit of the English school. These educational institutions make up more than 45% of the international school market. But is the level of education in them really comparable to studying abroad, in an English boarding school?
How British Schools Abroad Work
The growing interest in English education is due to a number of factors:
- The emergence of a confident middle class in developing countries
- Lack of own high-quality education in these countries to meet demand
- Growing globalization in education and employment.
Today, there are 57 overseas British school campuses, with 15 more planned to open soon. The growth in the number of representative offices of English schools abroad is associated with the development of franchising. Richard Gaskell, director of schools at ISC Research, notes that the UK market did not have an opportunity to increase the income of independent schools, and they were looking for additional ways of income. One of them is selling franchises or opening a campus abroad. This allows us to offer more scholarships to promising students, reduce fees, relieves the stress of the leadership, which is constantly looking for sources of funding.
He explained that most private schools use a “franchise” model, whereby an investor or management company pays a fixed amount annually - similar to royalties - to the school to use its name, brand or experience. The British school - the "mother ship" - sometimes receives a percentage of the tuition fees on top of the franchise fees. For example, Harrow School has opened campuses in Thailand, Beijing, Hong Kong. Many schools, starting with one, create a second and a third, receiving ready-made infrastructure abroad.
British schools in Russia
British international schools have been operating in Russia for 24 years, the programs in which correspond to British standards. Students receive an IGCSE certificate - a certificate after grade 11, students can continue their education in grades 12-13, take exams for an IB Diploma or A-level certificate. Students from more than 65 countries of the world study in British schools. The cost of the programs is from 13,200 € / year.
To what extent does an education according to English standards in Russia correspond to the experience that a student will receive while studying in England? The teaching staff of the franchised schools are native speakers, but often they do not have much experience in educational institutions in Britain. Academic courses meet the IGCSE and A-level standards, but the level of extracurricular work that boarding schools provide is difficult to implement in a daytime setting. As a way to get an international certificate and the opportunity to enter universities abroad without leaving home, British schools in Russia are a good option. But such an education will not be a full-fledged substitute for studying in England with experienced, carefully selected teachers, with the opportunity to live, study, get to know the country long before entering one of the British or world universities.