The all-new Mandarin International School, set to open in August 2021, is the first major educational facility in Thailand that has been approved to offer an accredited Mandarin curriculum.
There was a time when international schools had a fairly straightforward sales pitch: if your kids learn to speak English, they’ll have much better job prospects. However, as we progress further and further into the 21st century, it’s abundantly clear that being able to communicate in Chinese is an essential tool for today’s children who hope to become tomorrow’s successful global business leaders and entrepreneurs.
For parents wanting to steer their child’s education in this direction, it comes as welcome news that Mandarin International School (MIS) will be opening the first school in Thailand that has been approved to offer an accredited Mandarin curriculum. Set to open its doors this August, MIS will be offering a unique programme within the burgeoning international schools market. For native Mandarin-speaking families living in Thailand, being given the opportunity to study at the same levels as their peers in China is highly desirable, but non-native Mandarin speakers, and those wishing to learn in the same way as the over one billion people living in China, are also showing keen interest.
The founding of MIS was spearheaded by Li Min, President of Zhanjiang Cunjin Education Group and the Asia International Education Group. Having already successfully opened Zhanjiang University of Science and Technology in China’s Guangdong Province, Li Min has now set out to offer the same high standards of Mandarin tuition here in Thailand, and the school has been approved and recognised by both the Office of Private Education Committee of the Ministry of Education of Thailand, and the Embassy of the People’s Republic of China in Thailand.
A total of 60 brand new classrooms will cater to Early Years, Primary School, Lower Secondary, and Upper Secondary levels; all contained within a state-of-the-art campus that measures an impressive 13,200 square meters and is ideally located on Ramkhamhaeng 68 , in the Hua Mak district. Applications are already well under way for what is an 18-18 school, wherein students begin their education at 18 months, and graduate when they are 18 years old. Along the way their journey is guided by highly qualified, experienced native speakers who have a passion to challenge and develop young minds.
The outstanding Chinese, American, British, and Thai instructors will systematically provide continuous, high-end Chinese international courses for both Thai and Chinese students, as well as children of other nationalities. One of the advantages of teaching the majority of courses in Chinese is to establish long-term cooperation agreements with multiple Chinese universities, thus creating an open lane for students to travel to China for further post-secondary studies. The school will also be upgrading its curriculum annually to ensure that it keeps pace with societal and technological progress, and is always on the cutting edge of Chinese educational trends.
As students move from the Early Years to the Primary levels, MIS will introduce the Cambridge syllabus, leading to IGCSE’s and onwards towards the International Baccalaureate Diploma Programme in Years 12 and 13. The English teachers on staff will be bringing with them internationally recognised qualifications, as well as plenty of experience teaching in international schools in the UK and the US. These English-only classes foster a fully immersive language experience, providing a clear path for students wishing to apply to prestigious universities in Europe or North America. In addition, Thailand’s own Srinakharinwirot University will provide top-level Thai language courses to students, thereby helping them adapt to multilingual environments with their mastery of multiple languages.
Of course, there’s more to a child’s education than just learning languages, which is why another innovate aspect of MIS is their Science, Technology, Engineering, Art, and Mathematics program, otherwise known as STEAM. In order to enhance students’ ability to integrate so much multi-disciplinary knowledge, the school is working in cooperation with the China standardised STEAM curriculum system, which was formulated with the primary cooperation of the University of California, Beijing University of Aeronautics and Astronautics, Southeast University, Thonburi University (Thailand), and other universities.
STEAM education allows teachers to mix and match different areas of science and deliver knowledge through practice and experiments. During this process, students can master learning methods, become more creative and curious about things, and develop hands-on ability and logical thinking. In other words, they don’t just spend their days simply memorising figures and formulas.
Finally, it’s worth noting that MIS has numerous recreational facilities for students to use and enjoy; including a library, art room, sports pitch, athletic track, assembly hall, and two swimming pools. In addition, the purpose-built Early Years Foundation Stage (EYFS) building features one of the largest indoor activity areas of any school in Thailand, allowing over 300 youngsters to experience ever-changing activity zones.
Creating a school where Mandarin is not considered simply a ‘second’ or ‘additional’ language is a big part of the overall philosophy at MIS, but building character is just as important. Here, students are instilled throughout the years with three fundamental values: Mastery (mastering the acquisition of knowledge and transferring it to real-life situations); Integrity (knowing what is right and acting accordingly); and Success (recognising it, and learning from each new opportunity). In the end, your child will be more than prepared for the boundless possibilities the future has in store.
This story first appeared in the June 2021 issue of Prestige Thailand.
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