Expats in Jakarta will have a wide variety of schooling options available. While public schools are not a popular choice among expat families, the city boasts an impressive array of international schools. These cater to expat students from a number of countries, including the United Kingdom, the USA, France, Germany, India, Japan, South Korea, New Zealand, Russia and Singapore. Many international schools also offer the International Baccalaureate (IB) programme.
Public schools in Jakarta
Public schools in Jakarta are administered by the local government and follow the Indonesian curriculum. The teaching language at these schools is Indonesian.
Due to the poor standard of education at local public schools, as well as the language barrier, expats moving to the city with children generally send them to one of the many excellent international schools instead.
Road traffic is an important consideration when it comes to choosing a school in Jakarta, as traffic can reach epic proportions in the city and commutes to and from school can take hours. Some schools may also provide a bus for their expat students, while many expats choose to hire a private driver.
Private schools in Jakarta
Private schools in Indonesia usually offer an international curriculum in combination with the local Indonesian curriculum, and classes are generally in English rather than Indonesian. The International Baccalaureate is commonly taught in these schools.
While the majority of students at private schools are Indonesian, some expat parents choose to send their children to these schools due to the lower fees compared to international schools and the opportunity for more cultural integration for their children.
International schools in Jakarta
Though international schools can often be expensive, they usually offer a good standard of education, and also have the advantage of allowing children to continue with a familiar and internationally recognised curriculum.
There has been some confusion with regards to the status of international schools in Jakarta in recent years, with new legislation being passed that no longer permits schools to use the word “international” in their title. This has forced some schools to change their names. Children at international schools are also now expected to take part in the national examinations that students at state schools undergo, in addition to their school's examinations.
These changes have all been a part of government efforts to tighten regulations surrounding the international schools operating in Indonesia and prevent low-quality schools charging a premium for education by merely adding the word “international” to their title.
►For an extended overview of Indonesia's education system, see Education and Schools in Indonesia
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