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Varee - International school

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I hear this and that about programs and curriculum and The sort. Whatever happened to Common sense being encouraged and Common respect among the people. I find that odd in this day and age that there are still people oblivious to this concept. 

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I don't know how the licensing/regulation works in practice but it seems that anyone can call their school an international school. No surprises that smart investors are on to this because they understand that they can charge huge fees for an 'international' curriculum. ($20,000 US pa is commonly the lower end of the scale charge for sending your children to this type of 'international' establishment...though let me stress I do not know what Varee charge). And there are carpet baggers coming into schools simply as investors expecting to cash in quickly with little regard for any ethical considerations.

 

Many schools of this type will say they are seeking accreditation with the International Baccalaureate (IB) etc as evidence of their future intentions - it is therefore interesting to note  that IB or equivalent accreditation does not currently feature as part of Varee's goals ... although this may be something they will address in the future. However Varee's website claims "Cambridge" accreditation, a statement which is pretty meaningless on its own and to the uninitiated, ( ie prospective parents trying to secure a decent education for their minions)  is designed to mislead - in the sense of suggesting approval and/or quality.

 

Let me stress I am not challenging Varee's right to say it is Cambridge accredited, I am sure it is, but simply saying it doesn't amount to very much. Critically 'Cambridge accreditation' does not actually provide any means of assessing any aspect of the school's quality or performance . It simply is a descriptor - it means this school can teach the Cambridge curriculum and can enter students for Cambridge exams. As far as I know the 'accreditation' process is little more than a desk top review, as opposed to a detailed inspection following an extended process of continuous assessment  over two years, as in the case of the IB. The proof of the pudding will be the performances of those students when the IGCSE candidate students take the exams; that is if the school enters them. Perhaps further down the line some parents will learn their children have not made adequate progress and so will not be entered. Ouch!

 

There is sadly a lot of cynicism in all of this but this is the niche market in which I work and over the last few years I have seen things going down in schools that once would have been unimaginable to me.

 

On the matter of unruly children in a school as per  @Robert Schueller, it is always evidence of poor leadership and management, if there is a distinction between the two. It's actually quite simple to stop students galloping around a school. It needs management support. In these types of schools, however, let us call them aspirant international schools, cash is king and usually nothing will be countenanced by school owners and their managers that might result in a  parent taking a child away from the school. At $20,000 US a pop this is big money. (One student probably pays for 3/4 of a teacher.) Staff on the ground quickly sense this so they turn a blind eye and the students continue to maraud around the school. Of course the students clock this rather quickly as well and soon learn that they can do whatever they want. I really don't know whether this is indicative of what's happening in Varee but it does sound familiar.

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48 minutes ago, gerryBScot said:

I don't know how the licensing/regulation works in practice but it seems that anyone can call their school an international school. No surprises that smart investors are on to this because they understand that they can charge huge fees for an 'international' curriculum. ($20,000 US pa is commonly the lower end of the scale charge for sending your children to this type of 'international' establishment...though let me stress I do not know what Varee charge). And there are carpet baggers coming into schools simply as investors expecting to cash in quickly with little regard for any ethical considerations.

 

Many schools of this type will say they are seeking accreditation with the International Baccalaureate (IB) etc as evidence of their future intentions - it is therefore interesting to note  that IB or equivalent accreditation does not currently feature as part of Varee's goals ... although this may be something they will address in the future. However Varee's website claims "Cambridge" accreditation, a statement which is pretty meaningless on its own and to the uninitiated, ( ie prospective parents trying to secure a decent education for their minions)  is designed to mislead - in the sense of suggesting approval and/or quality.

 

Let me stress I am not challenging Varee's right to say it is Cambridge accredited, I am sure it is, but simply saying it doesn't amount to very much. Critically 'Cambridge accreditation' does not actually provide any means of assessing any aspect of the school's quality or performance . It simply is a descriptor - it means this school can teach the Cambridge curriculum and can enter students for Cambridge exams. As far as I know the 'accreditation' process is little more than a desk top review, as opposed to a detailed inspection following an extended process of continuous assessment  over two years, as in the case of the IB. The proof of the pudding will be the performances of those students when the IGCSE candidate students take the exams; that is if the school enters them. Perhaps further down the line some parents will learn their children have not made adequate progress and so will not be entered. Ouch!

 

There is sadly a lot of cynicism in all of this but this is the niche market in which I work and over the last few years I have seen things going down in schools that once would have been unimaginable to me.

 

On the matter of unruly children in a school as per  @Robert Schueller, it is always evidence of poor leadership and management, if there is a distinction between the two. It's actually quite simple to stop students galloping around a school. It needs management support. In these types of schools, however, let us call them aspirant international schools, cash is king and usually nothing will be countenanced by school owners and their managers that might result in a  parent taking a child away from the school. At $20,000 US a pop this is big money. (One student probably pays for 3/4 of a teacher.) Staff on the ground quickly sense this so they turn a blind eye and the students continue to maraud around the school. Of course the students clock this rather quickly as well and soon learn that they can do whatever they want. I really don't know whether this is indicative of what's happening in Varee but it does sound familiar.

great post and as you say many points not specific to Varee, you seem like somebody who is well informed

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1 hour ago, Robert Schueller said:

I'd have to agree with Stament 100%. Well said , Every Developed Country with English as it's Primary Language varies in Curriculum and Etiquette. However when you are used to A Public school that not only Rivals but surpasses a School like Varee International School with it's academic achievements and Carries the weight of proper etiquette and Manners like common courtesy you have to wonder why is it even worth paying for? Again it's because the establishment is solely ran to make money regardless of the Teachers pay scale. Someone is making alot of money and portraying the school to be High and mighty when it's far from that. The truth of the matter is it should be an establishment that focuses on the Child's Safety and Education hands down. If you are missing one component it's obviously an incident prone school just watch and see... The Administration is the one to blame. Not the Children not the Students. The parents are as well for allowing them to do what they please with little to no background check on this place. 

I wasnt happy and acted by moving my boys.. My primary reason was concerns raised several times which werent addressed.  Note this was the billingual not international school but I had enough of an insight and know teachers there at convinced me of my decison.  I would expect better for the cost, and do get better in free schools in England 

 

On another note, I don't feel that the age groups have their own play areas and this was a grief of my son who said the big kids play football at breaks so he and his friends couldn't.

 

Free world though each to their own. 

Edited by stament
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On 2/3/2018 at 2:46 AM, Robert Schueller said:

Every Developed Country with English as it's Primary Language varies in Curriculum and Etiquette. However when you are used to A Public school that not only Rivals but surpasses a School like Varee International School with it's academic achievements and Carries the weight of proper etiquette and Manners like common courtesy you have to wonder why is it even worth paying for

 

You don't come to Thailand for reasons of education. You come for other reasons, and then your comparison education-wise should be in terms of available options here. Not in relation to what's available elsewhere.

 

In my opinion, all schools that follow the Thai curriculum, be them public or private schools, bilinguals etc. are to be avoided.

Now, when you assess international schools, beyond your personal feel for the school, you look at accreditation and performance.

Verifying accreditation isn't done by looking at the logos presented at their marketing material. You want to check that the school is actually listed in the site of the accreditation authority. It isn't difficult to do.

Performance can be verified by international examinations. For example, American schools hold MAP testing 3 times a year, and the results can then be compared to average results obtained by millions of kids who take this test in the USA every year.

Another point is does the school take the kid all the way to last year of high school or do they stop at grade 9 or 10. I don't see a good reason for that except not being accountable for kids' results and universities they enroll in, upon graduation.

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Alfieconn , Any institute or Or Establishment that claims to Perfect are the first to be under scrutiny. Anyone with half a brain would understand this concept. Second any type of feedback I have researched on this School in regards to a complaint has been basically dismissed as something that never took place to begin with. To me that's suspect and shady because no matter how many achievements and awards acclamated to this Institute (and I use reference FROM XGM's comment ) who are they really trying to stand out to? Thai School Standards? It's absurd to act like they are so high and mighty in an underveloped Country with all due Respect to Thailand. It's far from impressive to people who understand this is just Propoganda to make money  regardless if the majority of People here are. 

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Your personal choices are not General commentary, and that's interesting how now all of a sudden you can actually identify the common courtesy concept. Only when you are not on the receiving end of it is it recognized. Any other Contradictions you would like to make?

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11 hours ago, XGM said:

First of all, thank you very much for a fine example of common respect among people :-) 

 

It will perhaps be useful for you to know that I have visited Varee last year and have found it to be not very impressive. We ended up going for another school. My comments above were general. Specifically, regarding Varee, since the whole international section is very new, there is no way to determine past record, performance, and other things I mentioned. You can't tell how successful the graduates are and so on. It doesn't take a lot to understand that.

out of interest what school did you choose?

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On 2/3/2018 at 1:07 PM, Robert Schueller said:

Yes I have been researching Concord International School in Chiang Mai recently. It's based off an American Curriculum where the Education is equally important as the students safety and we'll being. Manners and etiquette are encouraged. Which I believe is essential in the development of the Students anywhere in the world. Look it up online. It seems to be Genuine and not just trying to make a buck of the people like Varee International School in CM

I thought they only opened, or obtained MoE approval, last July. It's still being built, isn't it?

 

It's part of the CEC language school, Little Stars kindi, Ambassadors Bilingual School group of schools owned by very Christian Thais.

 

 

 

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1 hour ago, Loaded said:

I thought they only opened, or obtained MoE approval, last July. It's still being built, isn't it?

 

It's part of the CEC language school, Little Stars kindi, Ambassadors Bilingual School group of schools owned by very Christian Thais.

 

 

 

correct now open dont know about approvals or religion, my boys go to ABS Billingual transferred from Varee.

Edited by stament

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3 hours ago, stament said:

out of interest what school did you choose?

We chose NIS, and are very happy with it so far.

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On 2/7/2018 at 9:44 AM, Loaded said:

I thought they only opened, or obtained MoE approval, last July. It's still being built, isn't it?

 

It's part of the CEC language school, Little Stars kindi, Ambassadors Bilingual School group of schools owned by very Christian Thais.

 

 

 

I don't recommend any schools operated by this business group. Years ago we had our son at Little Stars and found the management, meaning the couple who founded the school, to be extremely irresponsible in all areas except collecting tuition and issuing fundraising appeals. 

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21 minutes ago, Puwa said:

I don't recommend any schools operated by this business group. Years ago we had our son at Little Stars and found the management, meaning the couple who founded the school, to be extremely irresponsible in all areas except collecting tuition and issuing fundraising appeals. 

Each to their own, we all base our opinions on personal experiences and research. So far I am happy since switching from Varee to ABS Billingual this year. The organisation from my own personal parent perspective is much better at ABS than Varee. But with schools the most important thing is the teachers and the quality of teaching not what they look like or even the organisation which whilst important isn't the most important aspect.

 

For now I am reasonably happy but if I wasnt happy of course I would look at alternate options.

Edited by stament
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7 minutes ago, stament said:

Each to their own, we all base our opinions on personal experiences and research. So far I am happy since switching from Varee to ABS Billingual this year. The organisation from my own personal parent perspective is much better at ABS than Varee. But with schools the most important thing is the teachers and the quality of teaching not what they look like or even the organisation which whilst important isn't the most important aspect.

 

For now I am reasonably happy but if I wasnt happy of course I would look at alternate options.

Fair enough

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