Vancouver, B.C. – May 24, 2011 – Greater attention to standards, accreditation practices, and branding is essential if Canada is to maintain its lead in delivering curriculum overseas to meet the growing demand for high quality education at the K-12 level, especially in Asia. Of the 70 Canadian curriculum schools abroad, 77 percent are located in Asia, according to a report published today by the Asia Pacific Foundation of Canada.
In Canadian Overseas Schools: A Unique Approach to the Export of Canadian Education, author Lia Cosco, a former post-graduate research fellow with the Asia Pacific Foundation of Canada, argues that Canadian overseas schools are one of the country’s most unique engagements in international education, yet remains one of the least understood or supported.
Canada is the only nation with a fee for accreditation and certification structure for overseas schools. There are seven provincial ministries involved (British Columbia, Alberta, Manitoba, Ontario, Nova Scotia, New Brunswick and Prince Edward Island) in the accreditation of 70 Canadian overseas and international schools around the world.
“The 56,000 students taking Canadian K-12 curriculum in schools around the world are an important aspect of Canada's global presence, and a unique feature of Canadian international education exports,” said Mr. Yuen Pau Woo, President and CEO of the Asia Pacific Foundation of Canada. “Provincial governments have a special responsibility for ensuring that the practices and standards of these schools are of a very high quality and must work together -- along with the Federal government -- to incorporate overseas schools more fully as part of Canada's international education brand.”
The report found that 63% of Canadian overseas schools are located in China, Hong Kong and Macao. There are at least nine more schools being planned in China in the coming years.
Each province is responsible for defining the accreditation and inspection of overseas schools as part of their broader international education strategies. Currently, British Columbia has the most overseas schools with 22, followed by Ontario with 20, and Nova Scotia with 11.
One of the challenges voiced by Canadian school administrators is the ineligibility of overseas schools to be included in the federal government’s international education marketing brand Imagine Canada.
The Canada-Asia Agenda and Research Report for Canadian Overseas Schools can be viewed by going to the following links:
Canada-Asia Agenda (Summary)
Research Report (Full Report)
About APF Canada
The Asia Pacific Foundation is an independent resource for Canadians on contemporary Asia and Canada-Asia relations. As a national not-for-profit organization established by an Act of the Federal Parliament in 1984, the Foundation brings together people and knowledge to provide the most current and comprehensive research, analysis and information on Asia and on Canada's transpacific relations. It promotes dialogue on economic, security, political and social issues, helping to inform public policy, the Canadian public and Canada’s Asia practitioners. The Foundation is funded principally through an endowment from the Government of Canada and by corporate and individual donors.
For additional information, please contact:
Asia Pacific Foundation of Canada