What are the Top International Schools in Shanghai China?
Are you looking for the "Collège Alpin International Beau Soleil" ($93,158/year) of Shanghai? Or how about the "Institut Le Rosey" (which runs just short of $100,000 USD for a boarding student annually) of the biggest city in China and the world? Or do you want to send your child to the school which reports it has the highest SAT scores of all the International Schools in Shanghai?
Regardless, this report attempts to answer the question or at least provides the starting point for any prospective parent or child that is seeking out the best private education opportunities in this city of 23.57 million and an area of 2,448 sq miles.
Current State of International Schools in Shanghai
"The education landscape for expats in Shanghai has improved dramatically over the years. There are now 32 international schools in Shanghai that offer global curricula, multi-lingual teaching and multicultural experiences.
More than 30,000 overseas students from nearly 40 countries and regions are now studying in international schools and local elementary and secondary schools. That’s almost a six-fold increase in the last decade."
And 27 of these private schools in Shanghai are listed in wikipedia here around August of 2013. They are:
"From next year Wellington, a boarding school in Berkshire, will compete for Shanghai’s pupils with Dulwich, a south London day school, which already has a franchise there." according to the Economist.
Offices: No. 688 Ji Yang Road, (near the Oriental Sports Center), Pudong New District, Shanghai 200126
In Chinese: 上海市浦东新区济阳路688号, (靠东方体育中心), 邮编：200126, Tel: (+8621) 2028-2966
School Campus, Wellington College International Shanghai
Yao Ti Road, (near the Oriental Sports Center), Pudong New District, Shanghai 200126
In Chinese: 上海市浦东新区耀体路, (靠东方体育中心), 邮编：200126
There's a large (East China) Sea of Information regarding International Schools
As you could see from the aforementioned, there's a lot of schools you can peruse through and decide if it is the best school for your child. However, are those the only choices. We have a few more here:
From an expat housing blog, here's some more choices to choose from:
Shanghai Experimental School makes up a ten-year program from elementary to secondary education with flexible grade categories and a focus on reform. The plan is that students graduate from this research-oriented institution at age 15-16.
Located in Xuhui District and in Lujiazui area, Pudong District.
Shanghai Shangde Experimental School is a boarding school with a mission to provide a challenging and secure learning environment. Like most of these schools, Shangde includes comprehensive modern facilities while also creating a “unique cultural atmosphere.”
Located in former Nanhui District in Pudong.
Shanghai Jianping Experimental School combines elementary and middle school into a nine-year program. This school focuses on Confucianist values outlined as “love, filial, credit, faith, and polite.”
Located in Jinqiao area, Pudong District. (Note: website only in Chinese)
Qixiu Experimental Middle School, states that they implement a people-oriented school of thought that facilitates moral education and social ethics. The institution focuses on spoken English.
Located in Xuhui District. (Note: website only in Chinese)
Baoshan Shanghai Experimental School has themes of rationality, harmony, and initiative, with general principles ranging from research philosophy, active development, creative teaching, to encouraging everyone to make the initiative to learn.
Located in Baoshan District. (Note: website only in Chinese)
Jianqing Shanghai Experimental School complies with a code of conduct that demands a strict teacher training system. Jianqing also cooperates with various other institutions including their Australian sister school.
Located in Changning District. (Note: website only in Chinese)
Resources and Details of International Schools to Decide on the Best Private Schools in Shanghai
In the U.S. there are great websites to scour through and rate the Private/International School options.including the Private School Review, or lists that some larger publications like Forbes produces regularly, or one of my favorite website that gives you good information about schools and education: Great Schools. But here in Shanghai, the English lists are few and far between.
We did find two "biased opinions" that may help at least in the beginning of one's search.
1. From a former SMIC Private School instructor by the alias 'jys390' on Shanghai Expat & posted a while back in 2005 (Fri May 20, 2005 11:23 pm to be exact):
As an experienced teacher in Shanghai (at the SMIC Private School) with familiarity with many of the other international schools, here is my breakdown of schools with truly western curriculum (to the best of my objective abilities)
Best Overall (Puxi): Shanghai American School (SAS) – Puxi Campus
There is a reason why this is the most difficult school to get into. They have a large waiting list because this school is the nearest thing you can get to a well-rounded, American curriculum. The management and facilities are top-notch. With a sprawling campus, SAS feels like a unique American retreat isolated from the rest of China – not unlike the gated communities for expats in the middle east. If you want your child to emulate the exact same lifestyle as he/she had in your home country (especially USA) and price is not an issue, then this is your first choice.
- drawbacks -
Price: USD20,000, distance from city center, long waiting lists, "wild" upperclassmen
Best Overall (Pudong): Concordia International School
A great management team with that creates a positive, structured curriculum. Much smaller than SAS, the school has a excellent facilities, and the entire campus (a beautiful, quaint office-building architecture) is hooked up to wireless Internet (all students are required to purchase a laptop for classes). It is a Lutheran based school, so there is more moral structure for the students (student uniforms, strong values educations). Smaller class sizes also help individualize learning. Also based upon an American curriculum, they offer nearly all the standard electives and college counseling as SAS Puxi.
- drawbacks -
Price: USD21,000, distance from city center, a relatively new school with a limited tradition of academic excellence for colleges (not that they aren't building one)
Best Value: SMIC Private School
A even mix of experienced and young, well-educated admin and staff (Yale, Stanford, Northwestern, UPenn, Cornell, Oxford, Harvard), small class sizes and the lowest price among schools using British or American curriculum (around USD6000, including 'management' fees). Has a unique bilingual structure with a completely American and completely Chinese curriculum under one roof (each student chooses one, but not both). Short waiting lists and a more sheltered social life. 2006 Middle/High School principal was Dean of Foreign Language department at Phillips Academy. *Finally, it has an award-winning student newspaper, the only true newspaper among int'l schools in Shanghai (okay, that's my bias: I was the faculty advisor!).
- drawbacks -
Distance from city center, functional but sparce, spartan campus and facilities. limited activities and electives. No academic tradition for colleges (first graduating class will be in 2006). Chinese-style cafeteria foods and small student population often has high schoolers in constant complaint. High faculty turnover rate. Sheltered student social life. Only accredited in China as of now (Chinese govt ceased giving new int'l school licenses in 2002)
Best Location: Yew Chung International School (YCIS) Gubei Campus
Best Chinese Language immersion – SMIC Private School/Shanghai High School-International Division (SHS-ID)/YCIS
Most Beautiful Campus: Shanghai American School (SAS) Pudong (next to the ocean, but very, very far from city center)
Best Academic Tradition: SAS Puxi
Best Athletics and Activities: SAS Puxi
Biggest: SAS Puxi
Smallest: Livingston American School
Worst (Objectively, really): SHS-ID
My experience with SHS students is this: It has too many apathetic local teachers and little to no supervision on the students. Students can go there for 8 years without basic English skills. Non-existent college counseling and planning. This is where excellent students struggle to create a college path by themselves, good students become average, average students go bad, and bad students commit crimes. Really. My understanding is that the management is purely Chinese aparitchik, and all the money from the large International Division used for its excellent Chinese track. Oh, and foreign students are not allowed into the Chinese track. You can get a good immersion in Chinese here, but only because so many 'international' students don't speak English at all. Meanwhile students learn how to sleep in class, ditch school, go nightclubbing, and worse.
One Last Note
On a personal level, I did graduate from what many consider the best international school in Asia – The Taipei American School. Great location in the heart of the city, top-notch academic reputation (5-10 Ivy League/Stanford enrollments a year). To this day they only charge around USD$14,000 per annum. And it is in a much more expensive country, with much less competition from any other int'l schools. So why do most of the Int'l schools in Shanghai charge so much? And all nearly hovering around USD20,000? It's almost like a backroom conspiracy, if I were prone to believe in that stuff. You would think someone would start to drive the market value down.
2. Top10 Shanghai International Schools in Shanghai by EastDay.com
1 Rainbow Bridge International School
Add: 2381 Hongqiao Road, (Shanghai Zoo's East Gate)
2 Deutsche Schule Shanghai
Add: DS Shanghai Pudong Campus: 1100 Ju Feng Lu
3 Shanghai American School
Pudong Campus: 1600 Ling Bai Lu, San Jia Gang, Pudong
Puxi Campus: 258 Jin Feng Lu, Huacao Town, Minhang Dist.
4 Shanghai Community International School
Add: 1161 Hongqiao Road
Lower School Add: 800 Xiuyan Road, Kangqiao, Pudong
Upper School Add: 198 Hengqiao Road, Kangqiao, Pudong
5 Shanghai Singapore International School
Minhang Campus: 301 Zhujian Lu, Minhang, near Lianyou Lu
288, Jidi Road
Xuhui Campus: 1455 Huajing Lu, Xuhui, near Laohumin Lu
6 Shanghai Rego International School
Primary School: 159 Dian Nan Road
Secondary school: 189 Dong Zha Road
7 Shanghai United International School
Gubei Campus: No.999. Hongquan Rd. Minhang
Pudong Campus: 48 Xue Ye Road, Pu Dong District
ShangYin Elite Campus
No.185 Long Ming Rd
8 Sino-Canada High School
Add: Dianhua Lake side, Qingpu District
Shanghai Admissions Office
Address: 2106, West Zhongshan Rd, Shanghai
Tel: 021-51113191 021-29798086 021-29798085
9 The British International School
Puxi Campus Add:
Puxi Primary Campus: 111 Jinguang Road, Huacao Town, Minhang District
Puxi Secondary Campus: 688 Jiyou Road, Huacao Town, Minhang District
Tel: +86-21-52263211 Ext. 1510
Nanxiang Campus: 151 Baoxiang Road, Nanxiang Town, Jiading District
Tel: +86-21-59125755 Ext 2223
Pudong Campus: 600 Cambridge Forest New Town, 2729 Hunan Road, Pudong
Tel: +86-21-58127455 Ext. 1015
10 Yew Chung International School
Hongqiao Campus: 11 Shui Cheng Road
Gubei Camps: 18 West Rong Hua Road, Gubei New Area,
Regency Park Campus: 1817 Hua Mu Road
Century Park Campus: 1433 Dong Xiu Road
Fax: +86-21- 50454725
If you need any help with your childrens' education needs, please contact our course consultants at 021.5432.5782 or firstname.lastname@example.org
**New Pathway does not endorse nor does it rate these schools by any means. It has only republished the information that exists on the internet and organized it in a way that will hopefully benefit all the students that attend or will attend New Pathway.