Relocating to a new country can be a daunting experience, especially when it comes to understanding the educational system for your children. The educational system in Bangladesh is unique and diverse, offering a range of options for both local and international students. This guide aims to provide expats with a comprehensive understanding of the educational system in Bangladesh, including the main stages of education, enrollment procedures, language requirements, public and private school options, and alternative schooling methods such as homeschooling and online schooling.
What are the main stages of education in Bangladesh?
The education system in Bangladesh is divided into five main stages: pre-primary, primary, secondary, higher secondary, and tertiary. Each stage has a specific focus and caters to different age groups, ensuring a comprehensive and progressive learning experience for students.
Pre-primary education in Bangladesh is for children aged 5 to 6 years. This stage focuses on preparing children for primary school, with an emphasis on developing basic literacy and numeracy skills, as well as social skills through play-based learning.
Primary education in Bangladesh is for children aged 6 to 10 years. This stage focuses on developing foundational knowledge in core subjects such as Bangla, English, Mathematics, Science, and Social Studies. Primary education is compulsory and free in public schools.
Secondary education in Bangladesh is divided into two stages: junior secondary (grades 6-8) and secondary (grades 9-10). This stage focuses on deepening students’ understanding of core subjects and preparing them for the Secondary School Certificate (SSC) examination.
Higher Secondary Education
Higher secondary education in Bangladesh is for students aged 16 to 18 years. This stage focuses on preparing students for the Higher Secondary Certificate (HSC) examination and university entrance. Students can choose to specialize in Science, Arts, or Commerce.
Tertiary education in Bangladesh includes undergraduate, postgraduate, and doctoral programs. Universities in Bangladesh offer a wide range of disciplines, and admission is based on the results of the HSC examination and university entrance exams.
How does a newcomer from a different country enroll their kids in school?
Newcomers can enroll their children in Bangladeshi schools by submitting an application to the school of their choice. The application should include the child’s birth certificate, passport, previous school records, and a letter of recommendation. Some schools may also require an entrance exam or interview.
My children are still learning Bangla, can they enroll in a public school?
Yes, children who are still learning Bangla can enroll in public schools in Bangladesh. However, they may face challenges as the medium of instruction in public schools is primarily Bangla. There are language support programs available, and some schools offer English-medium instruction.
Are there public bilingual schools?
Yes, there are public bilingual schools in Bangladesh that offer instruction in both Bangla and English. These schools are a good option for expat children who are still learning Bangla. Admission to these schools is competitive and may require an entrance exam.
What types of private schools are common in Bangladesh?
Private schools in Bangladesh include English-medium schools, international schools, and religious schools. English-medium schools follow the national curriculum but teach in English. International schools follow international curriculums such as the International Baccalaureate (IB) or the British GCSE and A-levels. Religious schools, known as Madrasahs, offer Islamic education alongside the national curriculum.
Do expats typically send their children to public or private school?
Expats in Bangladesh typically send their children to private schools, particularly English-medium and international schools. These schools offer a high standard of education and have more resources to support non-Bangla speaking students.
How expensive are Private schools in Bangladesh?
The cost of private schools in Bangladesh varies widely depending on the school. International schools are generally the most expensive, with fees ranging from $3,000 to $15,000 per year. English-medium and religious schools are more affordable, with fees ranging from $500 to $3,000 per year.
Are you allowed to homeschool while living in Bangladesh?
Yes, homeschooling is allowed in Bangladesh. However, it is not very common and there are no specific regulations or support systems in place for homeschooling families. Parents who choose to homeschool their children are responsible for their education and ensuring they meet the necessary academic standards.
May kids attend online school instead of a local school while living in Bangladesh?
Yes, children can attend online school while living in Bangladesh. There are several online schooling options available, both local and international. However, parents should ensure that the online school is accredited and that the curriculum meets their child’s educational needs.