Archived

This topic is now archived and is closed to further replies.

maxheadroom007

Schools In Koh Samui

81 posts in this topic

Just to reinforce visionquesthai post, I am also a happy Bluewater parent & have been since the start of the school. My wife & I have lived on Samui for 7 years & in that time my daughter has attended four different schools, including a Thai one, but not including Open Gates (a school which I know very little about). It was not until she attended Bluewater did she experience what I would call a proper school environment and it is clear to see that her academic & social skills have developed tremendously in the time she has been there. She is also extremely happy & has made many friends and never once has suggested that she didn't want to go to school, in fact quite the opposite. I would urge anyone to check all the possibilities available for their children's education, but for us Bluewater has proved to be the right choice. Any parents should attend the upcoming open days at both schools & forget about some of the rubbish that has been written on this forum & see for themselves what the various schools have to offer, bearing in mind that all the non Thai schools on Samui are in the relatively early stages of development and also bearing in mind how difficult it can be to deal with the local authorities & how long things can take here in Thailand. I also think it should be noted how profesionally both Mr. Lees & Dr. Meyer have handled this situation.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Just to reinforce visionquesthai post, I am also a happy Bluewater parent & have been since the start of the school. My wife & I have lived on Samui for 7 years & in that time my daughter has attended four different schools, including a Thai one, but not including Open Gates (a school which I know very little about). It was not until she attended Bluewater did she experience what I would call a proper school environment and it is clear to see that her academic & social skills have developed tremendously in the time she has been there. She is also extremely happy & has made many friends and never once has suggested that she didn't want to go to school, in fact quite the opposite. I would urge anyone to check all the possibilities available for their children's education, but for us Bluewater has proved to be the right choice. Any parents should attend the upcoming open days at both schools & forget about some of the rubbish that has been written on this forum & see for themselves what the various schools have to offer, bearing in mind that all the non Thai schools on Samui are in the relatively early stages of development and also bearing in mind how difficult it can be to deal with the local authorities & how long things can take here in Thailand. I also think it should be noted how profesionally both Mr. Lees & Dr. Meyer have handled this situation.

As a parent of twins :D currently being educated on Ko Samui i would like to add my opinion of their current school as that is what the OP has asked for.

:o Firstly, my qualifications are as a parent and holder of a BA Hons degree (that's honours for those in any doubt!) I have lived here on Samui for over 5 years and first visited here over 20 years ago.

:D Secondly, i have no vested interest in any educational establishment on the island other than as a parent searching for the right environment and education for schooling my twins.

In the last two years i have been astounded and surprised at the very high standards being set and met by their teachers .

I have been very impressed with my children's continual improvements in both educational and social skills far above and beyond what we would have expected.

I have only every witnessed teaching of a remarkably high and truly inspirational level.

But please don't take my word for it ask my children who never ever want to miss a day of school ever even when they do not feel well enough to go!!! :D In two years there has not been one morning with screaming children shouting " i don't want to go to school" That to me only serves to highlight the fantastic job that the teachers are doing there. In a time when education itself has been badly maligned how refreshing to find that a school can instill pride passion and respect in the children , the staff and the parents . I would like to take this opportunity as a parent to say Thank you to those who through their commitment and desire have restored a lot of my faith in an education system and have done so at all times with their heads held high

Thank you. My Children attend Bluewater School :D

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Interesting that some adults still behave as children, and island life seems to make this even worse!

At the moment, there is by far the most choice of education for expat children on Samui then there has ever been, and most of this is a fairly recent development, so it is important to recognise that all "International" schools on this island are still in their developing stages.

It is most important that the schools are visited and the teachers who will actually be teaching your children are met in advance of any decisions being made, you can get a fabulous looking school with all the facilities (or promises of facilities), but if the teacher is no good, it will be a total waste of time.

Beware of promises on Koh Samui, if something is not actually in place (ie, facilities, qualifications, curriculum etc), then there is quite a strong chance that it will either not actually happen or will take so long that it will be too late by the time it is put in place. This may seem cynical, but after living here for years, it is the only way to judge anything.

Regarding fees, Samui is still cheaper than Bangkok, but in general, the salaries are less here than up there, so it balances out somewhat. Further to this, fees do not neccessarily reflect the quality of the teaching, the school or the facilities available.

There are numerous factors which may make you choose one school over another, these include (not in any order):

Curriculum

teachers

location

facilities

cost

qualifications of teachers

general atmosphere

future plans

For one reason or another you may find that you have to move schools, this is more frequest than expected over here, as the only real way of knowing what your children are getting is when they are actually enrolled at the school, but at least you have a choice, which can only be a good thing.

Note also that although the "international" schools on Samui follow the British National Curriculum, there are some differences, one being that Thai has to be taught as well as English, and often there is a 3rd language as well, so for younger children, you may find that they are being taught more languages than in the UK. Thus, the definition of BNC is aready diluted, some schools also adopt other pseudo- european/mid atlantic forms of teaching using English for tuition, this combined with lack of resources, and the Thai gov't requirements pushes the curriculum even further away from the British one.

From experience, with two previous schools on Samui, what was actually taught beared little resemblance to what was promised and laid out in the curriculum.

For the record, my child is attending Blue Water school and I am more than happy with the quality of education and welfare offered, but it has taken a few years (often at the expense of my child's education) to get to this point.

Great Post!

I think the most important thing to keep in mind is the education of the students. Lets make sure that Both Bluewaters and Open Gates are doing an excellent job in preparing the youth of the world!

I am a school teacher at Open Gates. I moved to Koh Samui about 8 months ago. I applied to work at Both Open Gates and Bluewaters. Bluewaters would not do an interview with me despite the fact I have a masters degree in Education because I am American.

I dont really know much about Bluewaters but I do know a lot about Open Gates and I would like to share that with you:

I am proud to be teaching at this school.

Our teachers and their qualifications are posted.

We teach Thai lessons here for both native and non native speakers.

Our prices are lower than Bluewaters.

We are building a brand new facility for our 2008-2009 school year.

We are close to having our international status.

We do not charge additional fees for after school activites.

We work with the British curriculum.

We have a great staff.

I think Bluewaters has many similar characteristic. Regardless of where your children go to school, lets make sure they are being treated and taught well.

Thanks! :o

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

A lot of brand new posters. I wonder why.

In the end it will be the parents duty to research schools thoroughly.

You can always evaluate after a few months. It is not only if the school system is right but also the teachers, and other students. And to evaluate those, real time spend at a school will clear up many things.

I have spend a lot of time researching it and for me it was out of my budget to send the kids to a proper school. The ones within my not too small budget were very swiftly removed from my list.

Just having a chat with some teachers and looking at some class rooms. (Ask to see the ones on the right when they guide you to the left sometimes does the trick.)

In Bangkok i had more choice but even there i was not happy with the choices.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I am a parent of a student at Open Gates, who has been in attendance there for 2 years, after 2 wasted years at Dulwich (Samui) and Greenhouse (Samui)..these schools eventually became Bluewater.

I think this thread is a little bit of a back stabbing excercise, but some of the posters are correct.

After a slow start at Open Gates, my child is now progressing very well, and catching up the lost years at the previous schools...he is happy there, and i am happy with his progress and his development...I am also thoroughly happy with the efforts of Dr Claus Meyer to strive for improvement on an ongoing basis, he is clearly a man with a vision for the future, and i am not sure that there is a better person on the Island to achieve the goals he has set.

I think it would be helpful for the schools to have closer ties, and hopefully the meeting between Mr Morris and Mr Lees will be beneficial to better relations between the 2 schools.

We should all remember that Rome wasnt built in a day, and things have improved drastically since i first came here 4 years ago...long may it last ....personally i am sure there isnt a whole lot between the 2 schools, but OG is substantially more cost effective, and has a magnificent new school to look forward to after christmas

I suggest you visit both schools and ask some of the parents...I cant see that many would complain, and all would say that they have their child in the better of the 2 schools, as nobody is going to want to think they are not doing their best by their child....ignore the gossip, base decision on fact

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Hi, hate to get caught up in all this, but there are only six fully registered schools on the island. Open Gates is a registered English Language centre but this only allows them to offer english courses. Bluewater is a private buisness, none of the teachers have teaching workpermits. Ask any of the two schools if you can see your teachers Thai teaching licence as unfortunatley the Pgce or whatever Bluewater are screaming about doesn't give anyone the right to teach without being veted by the country you want to teach in. I would also challenge the everyteacher is fully qualified as I know for certain that they have people teaching who do not even have a degree.

So out of six schools do any of them offer a 'the British system'? The answer is yes Panyadee, besides some peoples' remarks that it is a Thai school, I have never been to a Thai school were every lesson is taught in English. If they mean Thai as in its registered then they are correct. The teachers at Panyadee are all fully qualifed, they have been assesed by the ministry of education. They have sat their Thai Culture course ( another requirment for a registered school) so all this arguing about which school is better you must remember you are not talking about schools. You are talking about private buisnesses. Panyadee only takes children from 3-11 years old. Which to me is my only complaint, as it means my child will be going to Changmai when they are 11 because I will be surprised if these othe 'buisness ventures' are around in 2 years.

I have 2 children that go to Panyadee. They are 6 years old and 4 years old. I had a 15 year old go to Open Gates but removed her from it last year. I have no experience with Bluewater.

In my opinion ... Panyadee is doing a great job of growing at an appropriate pace. The owner of Panyadee has many other businesses on Samui including a hotel, car wash, music school etc. He is Thai and has 2 children at the school himself. His approach is to grow the school with the children, so every year there is another class added. The curriculum is 5 hours a day English and 1 hour a day Thai and all of the playground speak is Thai. The teachers are well organised and the kids enjoy the school. I feel my children are getting a good education both in the class room and in the playground.

I highly recommend it to anyone that has children at this age, but fully understand the frustration for parents with teenagers.

The sole reason we took our 15 year old daughter out of Open Gates was based on standards or "morals". We found that our daughter was spending more time doing her makeup in the morning than doing her homework in the evening. We found that while they have a uniform it is a red polo shirt and the children can basically wear whatever they like below it like short skirts, ripped denim etc. On a number of occasions we caught our daughter walking down the road with a group of other students in uniform and some were openly smoking.

Now this may have nothing to do with the education, but my wife is Thai, our daughter is Thai, we are living in Thailand and felt that we needed to be educated in the Thai values. Even University students in Thailand have to wear a uniform and there is a lot of etiquette to follow including the "Wai" and the way to speak with peers and elders.

Maybe you say that these things are not for the school to teach, well we disagree and decided to take her out of there.

I fully understand the desire to have an International education but I also hear many people complaining to me in my restaurant about "home" and the way the children are naughty, disrespectful, on drugs, etc. We felt from our own experience that while Open Gates may be trying to be an International education school, they were also too International in their standards and morals for us …

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Vested interest or not, I am only stating facts that can be substantiated and verified very easily. (The headmaster's CV of Bluewater is very misleading of how the degree was actually obtained.)

If I am wrong about something I will be the first to admit it, but I have checked and double checked everything I have written and feel very confident in posting it here.

A child's education is something worth having a vested interest in.

wuuguuwuu

Wuuguuwuu, imho your post are the most misleading garb i have ever read. i.e. making reference to articles that were self written...... it is a well known fact that open gates has been a mess under the leadership of the german, and the recycled unqualified staff. the principle has very little teaching history outside of thailand and as for the Cambridge program....really so what? today it is nothing more than another marketing tool to justify a higher tuition fee and substitute valid school qualifications.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

For your information I am an Opengates parent and have some real major concerns.

First why are the IGCSE results and league tables not published? They are talked about a lot but never published. Publish them on the Opengates website for some real credibility! :D

Second I recently went to the new school site, what's going on, not one stone has been laid? It is obvious the new school will not be ready by January yet you are still telling us and writing all over the papers that it will be? You will soon not be able to continue competing with the other expanding schools on the island.

:o Myself and many other Opengates parents are truely concerned about your future and still unsure how to proceed for September. We all know the best time to move our children is the beginning of a school year. :D

Please reassure and inform us. A concerned parent! :D

Interesting that some adults still behave as children, and island life seems to make this even worse!

At the moment, there is by far the most choice of education for expat children on Samui then there has ever been, and most of this is a fairly recent development, so it is important to recognise that all "International" schools on this island are still in their developing stages.

It is most important that the schools are visited and the teachers who will actually be teaching your children are met in advance of any decisions being made, you can get a fabulous looking school with all the facilities (or promises of facilities), but if the teacher is no good, it will be a total waste of time.

Beware of promises on Koh Samui, if something is not actually in place (ie, facilities, qualifications, curriculum etc), then there is quite a strong chance that it will either not actually happen or will take so long that it will be too late by the time it is put in place. This may seem cynical, but after living here for years, it is the only way to judge anything.

Regarding fees, Samui is still cheaper than Bangkok, but in general, the salaries are less here than up there, so it balances out somewhat. Further to this, fees do not neccessarily reflect the quality of the teaching, the school or the facilities available.

There are numerous factors which may make you choose one school over another, these include (not in any order):

Curriculum

teachers

location

facilities

cost

qualifications of teachers

general atmosphere

future plans

For one reason or another you may find that you have to move schools, this is more frequest than expected over here, as the only real way of knowing what your children are getting is when they are actually enrolled at the school, but at least you have a choice, which can only be a good thing.

Note also that although the "international" schools on Samui follow the British National Curriculum, there are some differences, one being that Thai has to be taught as well as English, and often there is a 3rd language as well, so for younger children, you may find that they are being taught more languages than in the UK. Thus, the definition of BNC is aready diluted, some schools also adopt other pseudo- european/mid atlantic forms of teaching using English for tuition, this combined with lack of resources, and the Thai gov't requirements pushes the curriculum even further away from the British one.

From experience, with two previous schools on Samui, what was actually taught beared little resemblance to what was promised and laid out in the curriculum.

For the record, my child is attending Blue Water school and I am more than happy with the quality of education and welfare offered, but it has taken a few years (often at the expense of my child's education) to get to this point.

Great Post!

I think the most important thing to keep in mind is the education of the students. Lets make sure that Both Bluewaters and Open Gates are doing an excellent job in preparing the youth of the world!

I am a school teacher at Open Gates. I moved to Koh Samui about 8 months ago. I applied to work at Both Open Gates and Bluewaters. Bluewaters would not do an interview with me despite the fact I have a masters degree in Education because I am American.

I dont really know much about Bluewaters but I do know a lot about Open Gates and I would like to share that with you:

I am proud to be teaching at this school.

Our teachers and their qualifications are posted.

We teach Thai lessons here for both native and non native speakers.

Our prices are lower than Bluewaters.

We are building a brand new facility for our 2008-2009 school year.

We are close to having our international status.

We do not charge additional fees for after school activites.

We work with the British curriculum.

We have a great staff.

I think Bluewaters has many similar characteristic. Regardless of where your children go to school, lets make sure they are being treated and taught well.

Thanks! :D

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Have you contacted the school directly with your concerns?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

1. Would like to have any idea about the fees of these three schools. Can sb post here?

2. Do the kids learn enough Thai to have admittance to a Thai collegue/university?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Hi ClaudeFeller, I would suggest you try the school websites as I believe it is against the forum's rules to post such information as school fees on here. Not sure of the website addresses for each but I assume they can be Googled. To answer your Thai language question, all schools here need to teach a minimum number of hours of Thai by law in order to satisfy the school license regulations. I assume all schools here have this but be aware there a different kinds depending on the level of education offered eg. primary, kindergarten or secondary. As far as international licenses go, it's harder. This is plenty of info on what a qualifying school must have in order to satisfy the requirements. If you follow this link http://www.moe.go.th/inter_school/index_eng.htm you should find information from the Ministry of Education regarding this issue. From my experience I believe only the new campus of Open Gates School as emblazoned on their bill boards and, if you ask to see the plans in their offices, has the capacity and potential to get this license. I am aware Blue Water School is opening a new building but have yet to see the plans and I am unsure of their availability. Either way I am encouraged to see the prospect of a long overdue international school here to equal that in Phuket. I am not usually a betting man but would put money on the Open Gates school to come home first, after all it seems blatantly obvious this is now a race between the two and their bill board style advertising reflects that of two heavyweight boxers jostling for the crown. I just hope the childrens' education doesn't suffer as a result. As with all forums, you should take what is posted here with a large pinch of salt as posters can quite easily be anyone, everyone and no-one all at the same time. I hope you get your information and would recommend that you contact the schools themselves as opposed to taking some of the clearly tainted and biased opinions on here into account. Good Luck.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
For your information I am an Opengates parent and have some real major concerns.

First why are the IGCSE results and league tables not published? They are talked about a lot but never published. Publish them on the Opengates website for some real credibility! :D

Second I recently went to the new school site, what's going on, not one stone has been laid? It is obvious the new school will not be ready by January yet you are still telling us and writing all over the papers that it will be? You will soon not be able to continue competing with the other expanding schools on the island.

:o Myself and many other Opengates parents are truely concerned about your future and still unsure how to proceed for September. We all know the best time to move our children is the beginning of a school year. :D

Please reassure and inform us. A concerned parent! :D

Hello again,

The scores for the Checkpoint Exams are on our website. The results for the recent IGCSEs will be received at the end of August and will then also be posted.

Here is a direct link to the scores:

/www.opengates-samui.com/news/checkpointnumbers.html

Regards,

Dr. Claus Meyer

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Hi ClaudeFeller, I would suggest you try the school websites as I believe it is against the forum's rules to post such information as school fees on here. ....

What?

Can somebody of the concerned parents please tell me:

- Blue Water fees are ..... THB per year

- Open Gates fees are ..... THB per year

Should not be against any law in the world.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Hi ClaudeFeller, I would suggest you try the school websites as I believe it is against the forum's rules to post such information as school fees on here. ....

What?

Can somebody of the concerned parents please tell me:

- Blue Water fees are ..... THB per year

- Open Gates fees are ..... THB per year

Should not be against any law in the world.

It depends on the ages of the Children..

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Bluewaters fees are listed on their website.

Open gates are not. I don't like that personally.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Recently a friend visited Open Gates and Bluewater. She agreed that Blue Water had better facilities and seemed like the smart choice on the surface, but they actually felt much more at home at Open Gates. I think it is vital that you and your child visit all the schools and that you really listen to your (and most importantly your child's) instincts about where 'feels' right. What is good for one child may be detrimental for another. Relish in the fact that you can choose schools like this rather than being forced to send your child to the school who's catchment area you fall into!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Hi ClaudeFeller, I would suggest you try the school websites as I believe it is against the forum's rules to post such information as school fees on here. ....

What?

Can somebody of the concerned parents please tell me:

- Blue Water fees are ..... THB per year

- Open Gates fees are ..... THB per year

Should not be against any law in the world.

It depends on the ages of the Children..

Wise answer!!

Example, classe 3-6, fees per term:

- Bluewater some 90.000 THB

- Open Gates some ??.??? THB

Why I want to know this?

Poor guys like me need to know the fees before they walk in - OK?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I have just been informed that the School football league on Ko Samui has one notable absence as it is not allowed to join because it is not classed? registered? as a School. Can anyone shed any light on this ? Perhaps then all you need to do is ask which one is missing to end this debate once and for all and to cut through all the smoke screens.

Also has anyone seen the new Open gates building yet ? The one that was promised and featured on big posters all around the island !

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
I have just been informed that the School football league on Ko Samui has one notable absence as it is not allowed to join because it is not classed? registered? as a School. Can anyone shed any light on this ? Perhaps then all you need to do is ask which one is missing to end this debate once and for all and to cut through all the smoke screens.

Also has anyone seen the new Open gates building yet ? The one that was promised and featured on big posters all around the island !

My understanding is that blue water played a couple of the schools i.e. panyadee and opengates but the fall out from parents moving their children to blue water after has made them unwelcome for return matches :o

I was shown a vacant plot with a few bare spots a couple of weeks ago and told that is the open gates new home.

One school that manages to stay under the radar is the samui centre of learning, their new building already has the second floor completed and should be ready to move in by april. this is a very good school with the lowest tuition, real teachers and british curriculum i.e. 2 children 65k per term and they are not affraid to play footbal against blue water. :D

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
One school that manages to stay under the radar is the samui centre of learning, their new building already has the second floor completed and should be ready to move in by april. this is a very good school with the lowest tuition, real teachers and british curriculum i.e. 2 children 65k per term and they are not affraid to play footbal against blue water. :D

What, as opposed to fake one's at the other School's ?? :o

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

  • Recently Browsing   0 members

    No registered users viewing this page.

BANGKOK 24 May 2017 00:09
Sponsors
  • Popular Now