Bilingual private schools in Santiago?

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milita19
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Bilingual private schools in Santiago?

Post by milita19 » Tue Jan 23, 2018 7:14 pm

Hello everyone,

I am new to the board and will be moving to Santiago within the nest couple of months. As many of you I am already so stressed about education as my older will be 4 in 2019 and I understand she needs to apply this year to Pre-Kider...well...I have done my research online but I am looking for a bilingual school that will indeed allow her to truly be bilingual; right now, she speaks mainly English but fully understands Spanish (I am Spanish speaking). I also want a good school with values, either catholic or not and mixed...

I have of course looked at other older threads but prices have changed so much I wanted to ask again based on your now past experiences. I looked at Nido, Santiago College, and others but those seem to be a) super expensive and b) way far from I would like to live, I mean how do you even get there? I think that is the most expensive comuna en Santiago? La Dehesa?

I also looked at others like The Grange that I really liked but it is quite expensive too and they ask for letters of recommendation, I mean how am I supposed to get that if I am not Chilean?

I looked at Saint Gabriel, Andree, Wenlock, Redland, Newland, Dunalaister, SEk and KENT...maybe others too..all of them seem to be around same prices and kind of offer the same...but do you know them? any feedback? which one is really bilingual?

This is kind of overwhelming so I will really appreciate your help!

MILI

paladin
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Re: Bilingual private schools in Santiago?

Post by paladin » Tue Jan 23, 2018 7:53 pm

Education is not cheap anywhere. You’ve mentioned just about all of them. You dont say where you plan to live, when you ask about how people get their kids to school ? There are minibus services to lots of them, if you find its not convenient to drop them off or pick them up yourself. 4 is a perfect age to get them started on bilingual education, and bearing in mind that the school year starts in March, you may find it difficult to get a place for him, as for the popular schools, parents start enrolling them way in advance.
The Grange pride themselves on being snobby and unless you plan to live close, you’d find it hell for drop off in the mornings. If you choose to live in Chicureo, you will find branches of the same good schools that are in Santiago, and are much more convenient for dropping off/picking up. Housing is also a lot cheaper.i]

StrawberryHeartsForever
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Re: Bilingual private schools in Santiago?

Post by StrawberryHeartsForever » Tue Jan 23, 2018 9:04 pm

Hey, just to put it out there, as an alternative there is the Barrie Montessori school. My son will attend there this March. No faffing about with entrance fees, letters of recommendation etc as it is first come first serve. You do have to ring on the day they open for applications though because the spaces go very quick.

http://jardin.barriemontessori.cl

Here is a link to the website where you can see details about how to apply. The whole admissions process for school is so stressful here. So I have chosen to skip all that analysis and bizarre questioning to see if you as a family "fit in" with their profile. Often it is all about what money or job you have or what links you have. That isn't for me.

Good luck with it all!

Donnybrook
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Re: Bilingual private schools in Santiago?

Post by Donnybrook » Tue Jan 23, 2018 10:01 pm

>>I looked at Saint Gabriel, Andree, Wenlock, Redland, Newland, Dunalaister, SEk and KENT...maybe others too..all of them seem to be around same prices and kind of offer the same...but do you know them? any feedback? which one is really bilingual?<<

Of those,in order, Redland, Dunalaister, Wenlock maybe Andree. I am not familiar with Newland. In primary school kids will be exposed to much more English than in secondary. As they grow older the need to prepare for local university entrance takes over.

StrawberryHeartsForever
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Re: Bilingual private schools in Santiago?

Post by StrawberryHeartsForever » Tue Jan 23, 2018 10:21 pm

I have heard from someone who worked there that Andree puts a lot of pressure on the kids to perform well academically and a lot of the kids are in therapy. There are some facebook pages for mums and expats and many have their kids go the schools ypu mentioned. It might be worth getting some insider insight about each one.

Britkid
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Re: Bilingual private schools in Santiago?

Post by Britkid » Tue Jan 23, 2018 11:18 pm

We visited Dunalastair in 2013 and at that time they said that 80% of the classes were in English whereas SEK (also 2013) said it was more like 40%.

For older children, the % may be lower. I think from about age 14 or so many schools in Chile switch most or all the classes to Spanish apart from the English classes.
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Re: Bilingual private schools in Santiago?

Post by Britkid » Wed Jan 24, 2018 12:01 am

I want to put a comment on this thread that may or may not be relevant or useful to the OP, but I think could be useful for someone, and I may as well put it on this thread as any other. So OP, please don't take this as directed specifically at you. Other people will lurk and be watching this thread or find it in the future when searching for old threads on schools.

I reccomend people don't over stretch too much and perhaps keep the school costs at 10-20% of your total family annual spend rather than 20%-30%.

To work this out, you also have to factor in the possibility that prices will increase at 5%-10% per year, that there will be books, after school activities, school uniform and other clothes, food, transport, stationary. So after the matricula, quota de incorporacion and monthly fees have been totalled up you might have to add on another 20% for all the other stuff. Budget 30% though and you should be covered just in case. If it's a more expensive school, expect the add ons to be more expensive also.

You also need to factor in that the school may have a practically obligatory foreign trip one day that costs a few thousand extra dollars that you might be expected to cough up. Well, maybe not, but for budgetary purposes assume that they will. You could ask them, but things might have changed 5,10 years later even if they say now there will never be one.

But then, if you are staying in a school for a long term or for people with older kids than the OP, there is the next level....if you earn a really good salary and give your children a really good life they won't fully appreciate and value that as much if you put them in an absolute top school where all their friends' families are even richer than you. If all their kids' parents have better cars and bigger houses and more lavish parties, they will notice. If you take them to Vina del Mar for summer holidays and when they go back to school in March all the other kids went to Miami or Paris... It's human nature to look at what the neighbours have.

You then might find your kids are more likely to expect more from you and you are on a vicious cycle of keeping up the neighbours. Adults may not think like this (or may claim not to), but that's easy for us to say. As a teenager trying to survive in high school, it is not so easy to dismiss such concerns. One of my kids' friends was teased about she was virtually the only one in the class that had never been to a Disneyland. So Disneyland for that class of kids was just something expected, and there was nothing special about it. She ending up leaving and finding another school for this and other reasons.

That's why I mentioned some % amounts above even though I don't know much about others' needs and expenses. Because if 10% of your total annual earnings goes to the school (calculating on the basis of what you will pay without cuota de incorporacion, but when you have all your children in school not just the first one), then you are going to find that you are one of the richer parents and none of this will be an issue. It will be easy for your kids to see what a good life you give them. On the other hand if you spend 30% of your income on the school it may mean that virtually every one of your kids' friends will be richer than you and, especially as they get older, it will be extremely noticeable to them every time they look at the cars in the car park or go to a friends' house.

I think, going beyond schools, that people in general in life over stretch. I think most people could benefit to cut their expenses by 10% or so by choosing smaller houses, cheaper cars and so on. That extra 10% of material wealth isn't worth the stress. If a broken down fridge is likely to cause financial stress and a marital argument even though you earn much more than 90% of the people on this planet could even dream of, then something has gone seriously wrong. I'm always amazed how many people I meet sporting the latest smart phone that I would never dream of buying and a car that looks out of my league by far, and then they moan about the price of food and saying they are struggling to make ends meet.

When you choose a school, you are perhaps making a very big decision in terms of future financial stresses, especially if that school means you are going to have to live in a very expensive area of Santiago for housing. It is not so cheap to live here.
In 2014/2015 I blogged about my life in Chile. http://web.archive.org/web/201601121940 ... age_id=268

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Re: Bilingual private schools in Santiago?

Post by admin » Wed Jan 24, 2018 11:31 am

Or, just take all that money and put it in a low costs ETF / trust for your kids. By the time they would have graduated from the University, they will never need to work again. They might be ignorant, but at least they will be rich and ignorant.

Seriously though, I question the value of most of the big private schools in Chile for foreign students for one simple reason: contacts.

Those schools charge what they charge, not for the quality of the education (that may or may not be good). They charge that to insert Chilean children in to certain social circles and built lifetime contacts.

Which, really does pay big dividends in Chile over their lifetime due to the class system in Chile; however, that is of limited use to a foreign child that is planning to leave Chile in a few years, rather work the rest of their life in the Chilean economy. They won't get to cash in those contacts until they are late in their career. Probably not until their 30's, at least.

So have a long think about exactly what is you want out of those schools. If it is just somewhere to park your kid for a year or two, until you move on to another country, probably not worth it.
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Re: Bilingual private schools in Santiago?

Post by Rhodolite » Wed Jan 24, 2018 11:43 am

As a childfree adult with a strong interest in education I would put an elementary-age child in the public system here in uber-rural Chile and supplement that education at home.
I also think Britkid's comment above is one of the most sensible things you will read about education in Chile.
There are public schools with admission by academic exam, for example, Liceo Bicentanario Zapallar in Curico which have very good reputations for preparing children for the university entrance exam.

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Re: Bilingual private schools in Santiago?

Post by scandinavian » Wed Jan 24, 2018 1:20 pm

Many valid points.
As Admin, I would say that it really varies whether you expect your kid to work in Chile at some point. If so, then I am not sure I would agree with Britkid as saving money on education most likely would severely impact your kids possibilities (due to networking and the fact that the most important part of your resume seem to be which school you went to...).
But if here for a few years only, then I would also suggest finding a good public school - Most of the ones in the nicer neighbourhoods seem OK. And that would give the kid a real Chile experience.

milita19
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Re: Bilingual private schools in Santiago?

Post by milita19 » Wed Jan 24, 2018 4:06 pm

paladin wrote:
Tue Jan 23, 2018 7:53 pm
Education is not cheap anywhere. You’ve mentioned just about all of them. You dont say where you plan to live, when you ask about how people get their kids to school ? There are minibus services to lots of them, if you find its not convenient to drop them off or pick them up yourself. 4 is a perfect age to get them started on bilingual education, and bearing in mind that the school year starts in March, you may find it difficult to get a place for him, as for the popular schools, parents start enrolling them way in advance.
The Grange pride themselves on being snobby and unless you plan to live close, you’d find it hell for drop off in the mornings. If you choose to live in Chicureo, you will find branches of the same good schools that are in Santiago, and are much more convenient for dropping off/picking up. Housing is also a lot cheaper.i]


I don't want to leave far away from everything...so I was planning a house (don't want apartments since I have 2 kids and 2 dogs) in La Reina or Vitacura/Las Condes? but those schools at least in the map look really far like by the mountains almost lol.

I really like The Grange but yes it is super expensive...do you have any good feedback about any of the other schools I mentioned?

Thanks again!

milita19
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Re: Bilingual private schools in Santiago?

Post by milita19 » Wed Jan 24, 2018 4:07 pm

Donnybrook wrote:
Tue Jan 23, 2018 10:01 pm
>>I looked at Saint Gabriel, Andree, Wenlock, Redland, Newland, Dunalaister, SEk and KENT...maybe others too..all of them seem to be around same prices and kind of offer the same...but do you know them? any feedback? which one is really bilingual?<<

Of those,in order, Redland, Dunalaister, Wenlock maybe Andree. I am not familiar with Newland. In primary school kids will be exposed to much more English than in secondary. As they grow older the need to prepare for local university entrance takes over.
Thank you for your response, I think Dunalaister could be.

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