9 Best International Schools Outside Of Bangkok

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I have a school age child whom I want to get the best possible education. We also want her to have a calm, idyllic, healthy upbringing in a close-knit local community. We don’t want to live in an overcrowded, dirty, traffic jam. The air pollution alone in Bangkok will reduce a child’s IQ

So here are the best K-12 International schools outside Bangkok where your little one can get a world class education and you can all have a great lifestyle. Most of these schools have summer programs which is the best way to test if a school suits your family. I have had my little one attend school or summer programs in 3 of these schools. 

Read our list of the 4 best summer school programs outside Bangkok.

These schools are ordered from highest fee to lowest fee, which is an okay approximation of quality and educational results. 

1. Rugby School Pattaya

Best campus and facilities outside Bangkok

– Curriculum: British
– Student population: 1020
– Average yearly fee: 704,500 baht
– Summer program: Yes, from 7 years old

By name, Rugby is the most prestigious school outside Bangkok. I can’t say how good of a school it is but I can tell you the campus and facilities are amazing and second to none in south east Asia. Everything is big and high quality, spread out over more space than any Bangkok school could dream of. The campus pictured at the top of this post is more than twice the size of Bangkok International School or Harrow Bangkok.

The teachers are recruited directly from the best possible sources in the UK. The only question mark is the school culture which they have to prove over time. Rugby was banned from their inter school sports league for being naughty. Does this school have a caring heart like its cross town rival, Regents Pattaya (detailed bellow), does?

Again, this goes for all schools that have a summer holiday programs. Putting your kid in a summer holiday program at a school is the best way to test it, and Rugby does have a summer holiday program.

2. Singapore International School Chiang Mai

Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics

– Curriculum: Singapore
– Student population: 200
– Average yearly fee: 669,600 baht
– Summer program: No

The Singaporean curriculum is the best in the world, particularly for STEM. Some people think the kids are overworked and don’t have enough fun and creativity. There is a lot of math homework. Your kid might be miserable but at least they will be good at math!

3. British International School Phuket

Best school in the south

– Curriculum: British and IB
– Student population: 900
– Average yearly fees: 650,000 baht
– Summer program: Yes, from 7 years old

BISP is the best school south of Hua Hin with one of the most western student bodies of any school on this list. They have a solid foundation with almost 30 years of history.

4. Hua Hin International School

Top quality education with a close community

– Curriculum: IB
– Student population: 357
– Average yearly fees: 591,563 baht
– Summer program: No

Lovely supportive school of the highest quality. Mostly British teaching body with an amazing lady head teacher. A very western student body. Local expats will tell you Hua Hin is a village, you see the same people all the time. For parents Hua Hin International School is at the center of it all. This is certainly the best school close to Bangkok if you don’t want to live in Pattaya.

5. United World College Thailand

One global village of brotherhood, sisterhood and non-binary siblinghood

– Curriculum: IB
– Student population: 360
– Average yearly fees: 596,500 baht
– Summer program: Yes, from 7 years old

UWCT is the most alternative, creative and least formal school on this list.

6. Regents Pattaya

Very good in every way

– Curriculum: British and IB
– Student population: 1000
– Average yearly fees: 553,375 baht
– Summer program: Yes, from 4 years old

Wonderful school populated by the best of Pattaya’s international community. The school leverages external partnerships like Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) for STEM and the Juilliard School for performing arts. 

They have a strong sports program and do amazing overseas school trips. Regents Pattaya is the oldest school on this list having been founded in 1995 and you can feel the 30 years of institutional knowledge.

The campus’s indoor and undercover spaces are wonderful. The only complaint is that the campus is a tad compact, particularly when compared to the amazingly expansive campus of the cross town rival, Rugby School. 

7. PREM Chiang Mai

Great education with an understanding of Chinese language and culture

– Curriculum: IB
– Student population: 489
– Average yearly fees: 547,200 baht
– Summer program: Yes, from 4 years old

PREM sits on a beautiful expansive tree-filled campus in Mea Rim just outside Chiang Mai. It’s a great school allround but the defining characteristic is that about 90% of the student body are Chinese. That will help your not-chinese child to prepare for our future Chinese dominated society and help their Chinese language. It will not help their English language and western values though.

8. Community School Udon Thani

High quality Christian school deep in Isan

– Curriculum: American, Christian
– Student population: 175
– Average yearly fees: 401,250 baht
– Summer program: No

Community school’s parent school in Bangkok is excellent. Like the next school on the list CSUT offers a western style education in a very Thai broader environment. The location deep in Isan makes this the best school for hundreds of kilometers in every direction.

9. St Stephens Khao Yai

Good teachers and great lifestyle only 2 hours from Bangkok

– Curriculum: British
– Student population: 180
– Average yearly fees: 359,850 baht
– Summer program: Yes but only for ESL

The best thing about St Stephens Khao Yai is that it’s in Khao Yai! Pak Chong is an idyllic setting and a lovely local community only 2 hours from Bangkok. Because St Stephens is the only international school in the area it is the center of the local hi-so community.

SSKY can not compete with the big names and big prices at the top of this list for outright quality of facilities, staffing and organization. All the same it is a serious and good school. Other schools in Korat which call themselves “international” send their students to SSKY to sit exams, because those other schools don’t have the required certifications that SSKY does.

Being in Pak Chong there are very few western kids and the wider environment is very Thai.

Honorable mention: Montessori 

Most of the towns mentioned here have excellent Montessori schools. I suggest you check out the Montessori school in your preferred location.

PREM Chiang Mai