According to 11th Fleet's recent article, currently there are 22 international schools in Taiwan. A “true” international school as defined by Taiwan’s Ministry of Education requires that the student holds a foreign passport. Note this definition is different from a school that offers an international curriculum and does not require a foreign passport. There are a few schools in Taiwan that fall into this category, which we will cover in Part II of this article.
There are a variety of International schools in Taiwan, American vs Japanese, religious vs secular, and a European school in between.
Of the 22 international schools, there are 2 Korean schools, 3 Japanese, 1 European and the rest, American. The Taipei European School is unique in the sense that it is one school with two campuses (lower school upper school) housing three independent schools—The British, French and German section, with each of the sections running its national curriculum respectively. Geographically, there are 8 schools in Taipei, 1 School in New Taipei City, 2 Schools in Hsinchu, 2 in Hsinchu County, 1 in Taoyuan, 3 in Taichung, and 5 in Kaohsiung.
Who Attends the International Schools?
Unlike other countries where the student body of international schools consist of mostly expat children, Taiwan’s international school is largely composed of Taiwanese who also hold a foreign passport. This in part reflects the job market in Taiwan where there is a scarce expat workforce. However in recent years the international schools in Taiwan have recently become more internationally diverse due to the emergence of offshore wind farm industry, entrepreneurs who have discovered Taiwan as an affordable place to raise a family, and most recently, the rise of Covid-refugees.
Can My Kids Get In?
Even prior to Covid, the international schools in Taipei had sizable waiting lists to begin with. With Covid and the number of returnees/refugees, the waiting lists now number in the hundreds if not thousands at Taipei American School and Taipei European School. Recently, when we called the Taipei schools prior to Christmas break, we were told that there is no room for mid-year entry. However, when we spoke to schools outside of Taipei, some schools still had availability.
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