More expat children attending public schools
The number of expatriate children entering the government public school system in the Cayman Islands for the 2011 – 2012 school year has increased “significantly” in comparison to previous years.
That’s according to information obtained from the Department of Education Services as the result of a Freedom of Information request by the Caymanian Compass.
Data and interviews with families conducted by the Department revealed that there are several factors contributing to this shift.
These were listed as, “non-nationals married to Caymanians opting to haver their school-age dependents reside with then in the Cayman Islands; non-nationals with permanent residency acquiring permanent residence for their dependents; children of foreign nationality pending adoption by Caymanian families, children of foreign individuals who are wards of the state; children of foreign nationals who hold refugee status or political asylum; children of families with close Caymanian connections, such as Bay Islanders, Hondurans and Cubans.”
With regard to the number of children moving from private school to public school, the Department said there were no significant increases. “Examination of the data revealed no significant increases in students from local private schools,” read a statement from the Department.
The families of those students who did move to government schools from private schools cited tuition costs and acquisition of Caymanian status as reasons, according to the Department of Education Services.
“Costs to attend a CI government school is relatively less than the cost to attend a private institution locally or overseas,” according to the Department of Education Services.
New students are defined as students entering the government school system for the first time and those students entering the government system for the first time and those students being readmitted after a period of absence for one or more school years.
Under this definition, the total number of students enrolling in government schools for 2011-2012 is 457, inclusive of Caymanians and non-Caymanians.