Schools & Raising Kids in Ecuador

Ecuador is a beautiful country with a rich history and culture, that’s why many people choose to live there as expats. If you’re moving to Ecuador with children, one of your top concerns will be finding the right school for them.

Additionally, raising children in a foreign country has its unique challenges, but it can also be a rewarding experience.Schools and Raising Kids in Ecuador

In this article, we’ll explore how it is to raise children in Ecuador and the different types of schools in Ecuador, including public, private, international, and homeschooling, to help you make an informed decision.

Raising Children in Ecuador

We interviewed Jason, an Australian digital nomad, and Michelle, an Ecuadorian with 15 years of experience in the tourism industry, to share their experiences raising children in Ecuador.

Cultural Differences

One of the most significant cultural differences that Jason has faced is how much children are adored in Ecuador. Everywhere they go, people flock to children, which can be nice but takes some getting used to.

Breastfeeding is another aspect that Jason and Michelle noticed, it is a natural part of human evolution that no one will scold you for doing. In Ecuador, breastfeeding is openly accepted, and people will even give you pointers on how to do it correctly.

The “machismo culture” is another aspect that Michelle brings up. Although it is changing, there is still a significant difference in how women and men are treated, and the same goes for boys and girls. For example, it is still common for people to tell boys not to wear pink because it is for girls or to tell girls to help in the kitchen because that’s what girls do.

Jason and Michelle Expats Ecuador

Parenting as a Blended Family

Michelle and Jason are a blended family, and one of the most significant challenges they face is needing permission from both biological parents to travel outside of Ecuador with their children.

It is a real sticking point for them, as they need the father’s permission to take the children on a family vacation to Australia.

Activities for Children

There are many different activities for children in Ecuador, with soccer being the most popular one.

Other activities that are gaining popularity include aerial yoga, which is not traditionally done by males in Ecuador, making Michelle’s son’s choice to do aerial yoga an excellent example of breaking stereotypes.

In addition, there are many cultural events, including festivals, parades, and concerts, that children can attend.

Types of Schools in Ecuador

Public Schools in Ecuador

Raising Kids in EcuadorPublic schools in Ecuador are free for all students, but they’re not the best option for expat children. The quality of education is low, and the infrastructure is poor. Teachers also rotate frequently, making consistency difficult to achieve.

Additionally, most public schools require students to speak Spanish, which can be a significant barrier for non-spanish speakers.

Private Schools in Ecuador

Private schools in Ecuador are the most common choice for expats. They offer better infrastructure and a higher quality of education than public schools.

However, they are more expensive, with tuition fees ranging from $300 to $1000 per month. Most private schools require students to learn Spanish, but they also offer personalized education to help expat children overcome the language barrier.

International Schools in Ecuador

International schools in Ecuador are the most expensive option, with tuition fees of up to $1000 per month. They offer a more comprehensive education that includes subjects in English and other languages. They’re an excellent choice for expat children who plan to attend university in their home country or elsewhere.

However, they’re not necessary for most children, as private schools offer an excellent education at a more reasonable price.

Homeschooling in Ecuador

Homeschooling is becoming increasingly popular in Ecuador, especially during the COVID-19 pandemic many schools were forced to switch to virtual learning.

It allows parents to control their children’s education, providing a personalized curriculum that includes emotional intelligence training, which isn’t always recognized in Ecuadorian curriculums.

Homeschooling is also an excellent option for expat families who want to travel frequently or live a more flexible lifestyle.

However, it’s essential to note that homeschooling is a life-changing decision that requires a significant commitment from parents.

Private Schools in Manta, Ecuador

We also interviewed a family from the United States who live in Manta and send their child to a private preschool.

They explained that in Ecuador, parents can get high-quality education at a fraction of the cost compared to the United States. Private schools in Manta, such as Glenn Doman and Leonardo Da Vinci, offer a great education for children from preschool to high school.

The Leonardo Da Vinci school is a bilingual school, and they teach three days of Spanish and two days of English. This is a great opportunity for children to become bilingual and learn a new language at a young age.

Enrollment in private schools is simple, and parents will need to make an appointment with the school, go through an application process, and meet with the school director. This is also an opportunity for parents to ask questions and ensure that the school is the right fit for their child.

Private schools in Manta have smaller class sizes ranging from 10 to 25 students per class, with a focus on basic subjects and additional courses like computers, electronics, and tablets.

The schools, whether public or private, are inclusive of families, and they often host school functions that bring parents and students together. This is a great opportunity for parents to meet other parents and make new friends in the area.

While private school tuition fees are significantly lower in Ecuador than in the United States, parents should also be aware of additional costs associated with schooling, such as school supplies.

Final Thoughts

Ecuador is an excellent place to raise children, but it does come with its unique challenges. By being aware of cultural differences, finding ways to participate in activities that interest their children, and choosing the right school, parents can create a fulfilling experience for their families.

Private schools in Manta, such as Glenn Doman and Leonardo Da Vinci, offer high-quality education at a fraction of the cost compared to the United States, making Ecuador an attractive destination for expats.

If you would like even more information on this topic, checkout this guide from Jason and Michelle on their blog Expats Ecuador.



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Amelia Basista
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I grew up in the Chicagoland area and spent most of my career working as a sales rep in the commercial lighting industry. I still work online for a company in Denver doing sales CRM administration. YouTube is my part-time gig, but I'm so happy we can share our Unconventional Life and hopefully inspire you live yours!

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