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January 13, 2010

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Home » Metro » Education

Population of expat schoolkids in city is growing

DESPITE the economic crisis, enrollment of overseas students in local elementary institutions is still growing, officials said yesterday.

More than 23,500 foreign students were studying in Shanghai kindergartens, primary and secondary schools by the end of last year, compared with 22,000 students in 2008, according to Shanghai Education Commission.

And the trend is expected to continue.

"More foreign students are expected to come along with their parents, with the city's increasing needs for overseas elites," said Yang Weiren, director of the commission's international cooperation and exchange division.

To provide education information for foreigners, the commission has compiled a multi-lingual guidebook to local international schools.

The book contains a colorful introduction to the schools, tuitions and contact information of admission directors.

It's available at local consulates and international schools. An online version is coming, too.

Meanwhile, the commission is drafting a plan to upgrade local education for overseas students.

Most international schools are now in suburban areas and the authorities are studying whether it is possible to set up international schools downtown, where many expats live. The education authorities are also considering whether to add international schools in some districts without such schools now.

"Many overseas professionals consider children's education opportunities as an important factor when deciding whether to come to Shanghai," Yang said.


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