There was a point in time that schools in Thailand advertise themselves to be International schools, but lack the qualifications of being one. It was used as a marketing tool to get more enrollments. That is why in 1994, the International Schools Association of Thailand was formed. This is mainly to set standards and validate institutions who claim to be International Schools. To be admitted a member of this association, the school must teach International Curriculum, either American or British among many others. Secondly, there must be a high percentage of non-Thai students attending the said institution. And lastly, there must also be a high percentage of non-Thai instructors and educators teaching in the institution. To be standardized as an international school, Bangkok, the capital city of Thailand, has followed these simple guidelines to make sure they do not mislead foreign nationals seeking international studies.
For people looking for an international school, Bangkok standards in the present surely do not disappoint. As more Thai parents aspire to get their children taught with international approach and style, they condense international schools lessening the general percentage of Non-Thai students. To counter this, secondary schools called ‘bilingual schools’ were put up. Not to confused with international schools, bilingual schools do not necessarily follow international standards but adopt some of its systems and still have international style taught.
What makes a school international, in detail, varies, and even arguable at times. Many institutions expressed disagreement with the criteria. They said that it is still possible to produce global citizens even without meeting the technical guidelines. Even though many institutions echo the same sentiments, the criteria are still in place to produce a strong distinction between International Schools and other schools. And the more criteria is met, the higher the tier is. After the technicalities have been met, the approach varies. There are a handful of different curricula that can be adopted. However, the International Schools Association of Thailand has one different approach. Though different languages are taught to comply with international standards, they still aim to establish a good command of the Thai Language. This is to maintain a strong representation of Thailand in the international community.