Every year, many students both in Malaysia and around the globe get admitted to international schools in Malaysia. The parents and guardians of most of these students want their children to get a solid education in well-established private schools in Malaysia.
The reason being that the educational foundation of a child is crucial to their development, lifelong learning and social behaviour. However, there are certain myths about international schools in Malaysia that is simply not true. Here are some of the common myths.
Agreed international schools in Malaysia are equipped with modern facilities that make it easy for international students to adjust to their new life in the school, but that isn’t the primary reason why the schools are expensive.
While a private secondary school will have to spend some money maintaining and upgrading its facilities, most of the budgets are used to cater to teachers that are hired from abroad.
Hiring and retaining qualified teachers with the required skills and experience cost a lot of money. These teachers need to be paid well and their medical insurance and other welfare must be covered if they must leave their country for a job in Malaysia.
One thing that international schools in Penang or other states in Malaysia can boast is the fact that they have a zero bullying policy. The authorities often do not tolerate bullying.
Hence when such cases arise which is rare they are handled quickly and fairly. Students in these international schools are taught emotional resilience as part of their orientation.
They are also taught how to handle and resolve conflict, how to treat others and the acceptable manner of behaviour when in school. The teachers and counsellors also keep an eye on the students, ensuring that they are safe and receive the necessary support to excel academically and otherwise.
Contrary to what some believe, most of these teachers who are hired from abroad are committed to their jobs. They are not just professionals who are seeking an opportunity to leave their country, they are people who are passionate about imparting knowledge. Most of them have a minimum of 5 years of experience and a postgraduate qualification.
Additionally, they have a good salary package, are exposed to great training opportunities, and are provided with a conducive work environment. Since most of these teachers are quite comfortable in their jobs, they often seek an extension for their contract as well.
A good international school will often make room for students to join their school at any time of the year. Whether the student comes in at the beginning of a new academic year which is in September or January or any other month, the student will be received warmly and the transition will be made easy.
The authorities of these schools realize that families may arrive in Malaysia at different times in the year and they would need to enrol their children in school as quickly as possible. So these schools allow students to register at any time as long as the student is not in an examination year.
While it is true that English is the language of instruction in an international school, other languages such as Malay and Mandarin are also taught in these schools. Malaysian citizens who attend international schools are required to study Malay up to Year 12. Foreign students, on the other hand, can choose to study Malay as a second language.
At all grade levels, however, Mandarin is offered as a first, second and foreign language. Some schools offer additional languages such as Spanish and some even run extra language lessons for those who feel that their language classes are inadequate.
So will a student’s fluency in native languages be deterred in a Malaysian international school? Of course not. Clearly, these school’s curriculum aids fluency in local languages.
Now that you know that some of the things you hear about international schools in Malaysia are untrue, get ready to pursue high-quality education in Penang or other states. If you are unsure about how to do it, get in touch with our friendly counsellors for more professional advice.
As per the Malaysian Prime Minister’s announcement on movement restrictions in regards to COVID-19, Straits International School Penang will be temporarily implementing distance learning education from 18 March – 9 June 2020.
We are constantly monitoring the situation regarding COVID-19 and are taking measures in accordance with the national and health authorities guidelines. Our school will continuously keep parents updated on any latest developments.