International schools prepare your kiddo for educated globe-trotting and being an informed global citizen. There are so many fantastic schools to choose from, and one of the most important criteria for making that choice is the type of curriculum the school teaches. The British, UK or English National Curriculum is a highly structured, incredibly globally popular curriculum developed to ensure, first and foremost, a degree of uniformity through a general framework prescribed by the UK government.
However, the global community does allow for some flexibility. For example, British education is divided into Key Stages, but this is sometimes lost on the global level as many schools offer different curricula simultaneously or combine them to provide an even more comprehensive approach. We at Little Steps wanted to let you know exactly what was on offer in Hong Kong, so we comprised this guide.
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KEY PRIMARY/SECONDARY CURRICULUM TIPS AND SCHOOLS HONG KONG:
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The rigorous curriculum is followed by a rigorous selection of teachers who get to teach it. Needless to say, only the best of the best can meet the teaching standards. The efficiency of both the curriculum and the teacher's performance is regularly reported on for each student and each subject through evaluation forms and the collected data is used to help the students flourish individually further. The curriculum prepares students for GCSE and A Level senior school qualifications, and the ultimate goal of premium UK higher education, through compulsory subjects taught at an age-appropriate level. These include:
Wycombe Abbey School Hong Kong offers a British Prep School education for UK Year 1 to Year 8 with a quality holistic education based on the British National Curriculum of England and Wales complemented by an extensive Chinese language syllabus drawn from the Chinese National Curriculum. This enriched curriculum prepares all children for entry to the best secondary schools globally. Wycombe's teaching methods, experience and heritage enable them to offer an education for each individual pupil that balances academic rigour with an integrated focus on mental and physical well-being. Applications for Year 1 to Year 8 are now open for the 2021-2022 and 2022-2023 Academic Year. Limited spaces available. To book a school tour, visit https://wycombeabbey.
Offering an enhanced “Intelligently British” Curriculum, Oxbridge School delivers an inspiring primary education for children aged 5—11 in Hong Kong. They are dedicated to providing a high-quality education that not only inspires a love of learning but also celebrates students’ individual strengths and achievements.
One of the leading co-educational boarding schools in the United Kingdom, Shrewsbury School is a new edition to Hong Kong's international school scene. The freshly opened school is a co-educational Primary School capable of accommodating more than 850 international students aged 3 to 11 years. Shrewsbury is fairly selective as its goal is to bring together exceptional humans, whether they're they be exceptional in the classroom, concert hall, sports field, on stage or simply in person. However, they understand the pressures extraordinary people are under and protect them at all costs! They are a community that looks out for one another and provides opportunities to expand their interests and talents further!
Shrewsbury International School, 10 Shek Kok Road, Tseung Kwan O, New Territories, Hong Kong, +852 2480 1500, www.shrewsbury.hk
Nord Anglia International School is part of Nord Anglia Education's global family of 56 premium international schools from 27 countries, which directly benefits the kids in the form of a Global Campus that provides them with countless online, in-school and worldwide experiences that connect them to their peers and experts. Their unifying philosophy is their ambitious belief in their students; according to NAIS, there is no limit to what they can achieve. This may seem like a fairy tale, but their expert team and huge global community are in place and ready to provide them with endless support and opportunities along their personally chosen way of making a difference. It's not impossible when they have access to the extraordinary.
Nord Anglia International School, Primary & Secondary, 11 On Tin St, Lam Tin, Kowloon, Hong Kong | Early Years, Red Hill Plaza, Red Hill Road, Tai Tam, Hong Kong, +852 3958 1488 | Early Years campus: Sai Kung address: 285 Hong Kin Road, Sai Kung, Hong Kong, www.nordangliaeducation.com
Discovery Bay International School is nestled amidst the greenery of the beautiful and tranquil island of Lantau which, along with the community of Discovery Bay, strongly inform the way the school operates in its philosophy and practice. They pride themselves on being perceived as different from other international schools in Hong Kong; despite the school using a British curriculum, it's learning the environment, and the experience it offers are highly personalized and creative and come with a wide range of extracurricular activities, as well as extra support.
Founded over forty years ago as a Not-for-Profit Association to provide a high-quality British style education for the English speaking community in Hong Kong, Kellett School made sure to build its principles on the very best of British education while taking into account their unique position in South East Asia at the gateway to China. The school follows the English National Curriculum, but their version structured in a way that enables students to meet or exceed the expectations of the English educational system. Kellet is committed to the well-thought-out cycle of providing their students with challenges, offering opportunities and entrusting them with responsibilities with the ultimate goal of instilling in them a "love of learning and confidence for life."
Kellett School, Pok Fu Lam Preparatory, 2 Wah Lok Path, Wah Fu, Pok Fu Lam, Hong Kong, +852 3120 0700 | Kowloon Bay Prep and Senior, 7 Lam Hing Street, Kowloon Bay, Hong Kong, www.kellettschool.com
Lantau International School is another school that draws inspiration from its surroundings. Boasting a unique balance of Primary English education and the greenest environment of Hong Kong, they take full advantage of the best of both to create a synergistic learning experience for its students. Their surroundings are as green, as their classrooms are high-tech. LIS also has one of the highest teacher per student ratios among international schools in Hong Kong, allowing them to maximize student-to-teacher contact. LIS has existed since 1995, and they must be doing something right since their students began enrolling their own children at the school!
Lantau International School, Reception, No. 22, Upper Cheung Sha Village, Lantau Island, Hong Kong, +852 2984 0302 | Lower Primary, House 113, Tong Fuk Village, Lantau, Hong Kong, +852 2980 3676 | Upper primary, No. 17-19, Lo Wai Tsuen, Pui O, Lantau Island, Hong Kong, +852 2984 0302, www.lis.edu.hk
Harrow International School in one of the leading international schools in Hong Kong and Asia as a whole. It is therefore fitting that they deem leadership a "Harrovian quality" and set out to educate leaders—teach students to contribute to the community, apply knowledge with compassion, solve problems collaboratively, make fair and just choices and face challenges with determination. They follow an adapted and expanded version of the English national curriculum. Harrow truly stands as a giant of education, both through the physical presence of its magnificent campus, and the palpable sense of purpose felt in every student and staff member, corroborated through the results they continuously achieve through cooperation.
Anfield comprises a Primary and two Kindergartens following the Early Years Foundation Stage and the English National Curriculum. It's a private, co-educational, Roman Catholic institution that accepts students from all backgrounds and faiths. They pride themselves on creating a caring, family atmosphere in which they teach students to be globally-minded citizens informed by the positive teachings of Jesus Christ, irrespective (and all the while respectful) of their personal faith. They strive to constantly move forward and be innovative, create an environment that's conducive to learning and be systematic, professional and rigorous without compromising on their caring and support. Anfield achieves the balance by asking a lot of their students' strengths and supporting them in their weaknesses.
Anfield, Anfield International Kindergarten, 5 Cumberland Road, Kowloon Tong, Kowloon, +852 2794 3668, firstname.lastname@example.org | Anfield International Kindergarten and Nursery, L2, Phase 1, Laguna Verde, 8 Laguna Verde Avenue, Hunghom, Kowloon, +852 2766 3882, email@example.com | Anfield School, No. 1, Lung Pak Street, Tai Wai, Shatin, N.T., +852 2692 8823, firstname.lastname@example.org, www.anfield.com.hk
Yew Chung has been providing quality international education to the learners of Hong Kong for more than 80 years. Originally specializing in early childhood education, Yew Chung International School (YCIS) now provides education from early childhood through primary and secondary that draws on the best from international education, with their Secondary program following the framework of the English National Curriculum. Chinese and Western co-principals co-operate at Yew Chung International to create a school culture where Eastern and Western values and education models are equally regarded by the whole school community, thus nurturing bilingual education and inspiring students with the best of both worlds!
Yew Chung International School, Secondary Section, 3 To Fuk Road, Kowloon Tong, Hong Kong, +852 2336 3443, www.ycis-hk.com
The secondary years program at the Singapore International School Hong Kong modeled along the lines of the rigorous Singapore education system, builds on their bilingual primary years program and prepares students for the Cambridge International General Certificate of Secondary Education (IGCSE) examinations at the end of Secondary 4, followed by the two-year International Baccalaureate Diploma Programme (IBDP). All this blends seamlessly into what is ultimately their own curriculum with a focus is on holistic development on 21-century skills in a bilingual environment!
Norwegian International School (NIS) is a school like no other in Hong Kong. It’s a school where you’ll find wide-open spaces, lush greenery, and students who love to spend time learning both in and out of doors. The pursuit of academic learning at NIS is accompanied and strengthened by the school’s focus on character growth and development of international mindedness, with all three elements woven together as integral parts of the International Primary Curriculum (IPC) and International Early Years Curriculum (IEYC). Both are inquiry-based programs that use creative, thematic units to demonstrate how different subjects relate to each other. The UK National Literacy Framework and Australian Mathematics Curriculum provide an important complement to the program of learning at NIS.
Norwegian International School (NIS), www.nis.edu.hk
Since opening in 2012, IslandCA has strived to develop with excellence, building on Generations Christian Education’s over 30 years of experience in Hong Kong and the Chinese YMCA of Hong Kong’s more than a century of educational ministry. Island Christian Academy is proud to be Hong Kong’s first IPC Accredited School and a member of the Council of International Schools. Learning is structured around the inquiry-based International Primary Curriculum (IPC) & International Middle Years Curriculum (IMYC), bolstered by the Australian Mathematics curriculum, UK National Literacy Framework, and Journey 2:52 Christian Studies curriculum.