Parents to pay more this year
Many international schools are raising their fees for the coming academic year, one by as much as 17 per cent.
Delia School of Canada, one of the few schools advertising available places is increasing its fees from $58,000 to $68,000 at primary level. Secondary level fees will increase 8.5 per cent. According to Jack Saddler, principal of the secondary school, this was to pay for new facilities, in particular IT.
The English Schools Foundation (ESF) has warned parents that they can expect increases in the region of 4.99 per cent, in line with the Government's Annual Pay Award (APA). 'After three years with frozen fees, a rise this year seems inevitable,' said Jennifer Wisker, the ESF's chief executive, in her newsletter to parents. 'We expect to continue our policy of holding increases within the percentage increase in APA.'
The German Swiss International School, French International and Canadian International School (CIS) are among others increasing fees by 6.5 per cent, five per cent and four to six per cent respectively. Chinese International School fees will range from $87,380 in Year One to $104,095 in Year Nine, up from $83,330 and $99,500. Several schools are holding fees at current levels, including Yew Chung International School, which already charges parents up to $128,535 a year. Others retaining current fees are Kiang-su and Chekiang International primary School, International Christian School and Canadian Overseas International College.
Despite the increases, many schools still have long waiting lists for most years, in particular at primary and early secondary levels. Allan McLeod, principal of CIS said: 'We are full at all levels, up to junior high school. There are a lot of people looking for this type of schooling who we cannot accommodate.' His school had applied for a Private Independent School (PIS) site at Shum Wan Road. But the Education Department, which last week announced that the ESF and Independent Schools Foundation had won sites in Discovery Bay and near Cyberport respectively, has not allocated this site because difficulties in developing the steep slope have not been resolved.
'We applied for the site because we thought it was the most logical thing for Hong Kong to have an adjacent school, sharing our facilities and expertise,' he said. 'They would be two distinct schools with a natural affinity.'