Be Picky about School
School is the next step. Take your time with this, as there are all sorts of school options in Mexico from which to choose. Public, private, international – your location and budget may determine which is the best fit for your children.
International schools cater to families who have traveled in from another country, and who want to give their children an advantage when it comes to a post secondary education abroad. It’s not uncommon to hear multiple languages spoken in the halls. However, the language of instruction is preset. If you’d like your children to have a post secondary option in an English-speaking country, you may want to consider the many American schools located across Mexico. The coursework may be more aligned to what your children is used to in their home country. International school administration eases the transition for you and your children by creating opportunities to get involved socially as well as academically.
Private and Public Schools
Private and public schools are great for immersing your children in the Mexican language and customs. They will experience fresh perspectives that could open doors academically and later in life, professionally. The downside may be that your children might feel isolated at first. But not to worry. The school, and expat community, can offer help and resources to help during the transition.
The key is to do your due diligence when looking for a school, and to do it early. Research as much as possible. Ask questions until you and your children are satisfied. This will be particular helpful if you can do it as early in the moving transition as possible. Below is a checklist of items to consider when speaking with a contact at a potential school:
- The school's approach to education
- School culture
- Student/teacher ratio
- Student population
- Documentation needed to enroll (birth certificates, school records, letters of recommendation, etc.)
- Tuition, if applicable
- Referrals from other parents
Act Like a Tourist, Live Like a Local
There will be a lot to do when you first move to Mexico as we mention in How to move your children to Mexico part I , but be sure to take the time to enjoy your new area. Do all the things a tourist would do. Eat in specialty restaurants. Go zip lining. Ride horses. Rent four wheelers and head up the trail to a hidden beach. Treat it like a “stay-cation,” especially since you've worked very hard to move to Mexico. Eventually, you'll start to live like a local, connecting with nationals and local expats to share tidbits of successful living in Mexico.
Relax and Enjoy
It will take about one year to truly settle in, so enjoy every day, birthday, holiday and season as it comes. You're in this together, and the memories made during this time will last a lifetime. Enjoy all of the wonders and sensations of your new country, and watch how fast you and your children will reap the benefits of this family-bonding adventure!