The GCC has a young, fast-growing population, with student numbers expected to reach 15 million by 2020 – driving significant growth in demand across all levels of private education. In Bahrain, a solid demand has been demonstrated for K-12 education, with numbers of students increasing by 36% since 2013 in the K-12 private education sector (an average of 7.2% per year).
Given this increased demand for private education in Bahrain, we’re very excited to welcome Inspired Education Group, one of the largest British Schools Group in the world, to the Kingdom as the new operators of the British School of Bahrain (BSB).
Inspired Education Group schools offer a fresh and contemporary approach to education by re-evaluating traditional teaching methods and curriculums to create a more dynamic, relevant and powerful model reflecting current attitudes.
Bahrain EDB was able to support the Inspired Education Group to set up the BSB by guiding them through the setup process of licensing and government approval and will continue to support the growth and expansion plans in the Kingdom. The resulting investment of $8 million has led to the creation of 70 new jobs.
Bahrain’s fast-growing population will continue to drive demand in private education. The number of people under 20 in Bahrain is expected to increase by 30,000 over the next five years – around 1.7% annually. Private school enrolments increased by more than 20% in the four years from 2013 to 2017, fuelled by population growth and an increasing willingness to spend on international curricula.
A high mix of expats and an increasing willingness of all parents to spend on education, is boosting demand for international curricula such as those offered by Inspired Education Group through BSB. Furthermore, the higher education market in Bahrain is expected to grow to 48,100 enrolments by 2020 – up from 38,260 in 2015, implying a CAGR of 4.7% from 2015–2020.
In short, the current education sector in Bahrain presents investors with a wealth of exciting opportunities. And Bahrain in particular – with one of the most liberal and pro-business economies in the region, 100% foreign ownership, and an open and diverse society – offers a particularly compelling proposition to international schools and universities seeking to launch new campuses in the region.