As we are drawing to the end of the school year here in Fiji there are lots of decisions that need to be made for schooling in 2018. Whether an International School, Private School or Local School is right for your family. We can give you the information you need to make the right choice and give you a guide for the schools on offer.
Some of the decisions are based on:
- Tradition (same school as parents)
- Availability of places at school
- Friendship groups
- Extra-curricular activities
Moving to a new country can be stressful. Understanding and negotiating a new school system is daunting, especially if you add in a hemisphere change. Find Your Feet can help make this process easier and guide you through the decision making process. The end result is the children in your family can settle quickly and establish their lives easily.
Understanding the School System – International and Local Schools
Generally Public Schools are “full”. As education is free (paid by the government) the schools, especially primary (ages 6-12yrs) are often with class sizes of 40+.
The schools are open for all ethnicities. Yet often they are perceived as one race or another due to geographical and socio-economic norms for the catchment area.
Mostly people moving to Fiji will choose a private school to guarantee a place and the curriculum offered.
The national curriculum is generally good and many high school graduates attain places in overseas universities.
There are a variety of options for private schools in Fiji. Mostly they follow an international curriculum and have 4 terms per year. Some examples are: The Learning Centre, International School Suva, International School Nadi, Suva Christian School, Dayspring Christian.
Moving to Fiji for a short period? Then following an international curriculum can provide easy transition from the previous school and as a result – towards the next school. Choosing the right year level and school is paramount to the family settling into Fiji.
Term Times and Breaks (vacation)
In Fiji the local schools and international schools have different term times. Local schools are on a 3 term year and Private Schools are on a 4 term year. While mostly the longer Christmas period are roughly the same dates, the holiday breaks between school terms do not match up at all.
International School Suva are the only term dates I can find at this stage for 2018, we will update these as they become available. So you can start planning your weekend escapes & longer overseas jaunts here is an example of the 4 term dates. International School Suva and International School Nadi (unaffiliated) both have a 3 week break between terms 2 and 3 to allow for students to travel further afield during Nth Hemisphere “Summer Vacation”. ISS 2018_Term_Dates
Fiji Public Holidays 2018
Public Holidays in Fiji are often aligned with the differing religions of Christianity, Muslims, Hinduism. Also holidays can be for modern Fiji times, like “Constitution Day” and “Sports and Wellness Day”.
Plus the overall “religion” of Rugby – we were lucky enough to have a special public holiday called in 2016 when Fiji won the gold medal at the 2016 Rio Olympics.
In 2018 we will enjoy 11 public holidays as announced by FBC news in August.
To finish with a bit of fun for this post – here is some footage from the public holiday in 2016 celebrating the return of our 7’s team with their gold medals. As you can see, in Fiji we like to celebrate!
Negotiating all of this can be daunting. I can help compare schools and work out the best school to suit your child’s needs. We can map out when the holidays and family time will occur so you can explore your new home. Contact me as soon as possible so we can get started.