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The advantages of studying in Mauritius

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From Xpatweb: For young families, the process of relocating to a new country can be a life-altering adventure. The excitement of immersing themselves in a new culture, new surroundings and a new life, are the earliest elements that form in the mind. Soon after, when the gloss of the potential move has worn off, complex aspects of their decision start to take shape. The first concern is usually accommodation and safety, which is soon followed by the educational needs of their children.

Even for adults who want to tackle the next phase of their education, or those determined to obtain higher degrees, Mauritius makes for an ideal study destination.

Mauritius by the numbers

The most exciting thoughts about moving to Mauritius delivers a sensory overload. Diverse culture, stable economy, island lifestyle and beach views aplenty, are just some of the realities to sink your teeth into. However, a quick look at Mauritian statistics, confirms that there is much more than meets the eye.

Besides an unemployment rate that hangs around the low 7% mark, they also have a low crime rate. According to the annual Forbes Magazine list, as well as the World Bank report, Mauritius was ranked the best African country to do business in, knocking out competitors like South Africa and Nigeria. Both these reports looked at taxation, governance, workforce, banking, infrastructure and more.

With a measly population of close to 1.3 million, there are around 72,000 children of school-going age in Mauritius, with more than 300 primary schools and 170 secondary schools to choose from. Pre-Covid the island recorded a whopping 1.3 million tourists visiting their shores every year. This provides for a bustling hospitality sector year-round.

The Mauritian education system

The education system in Mauritius is diverse and very accommodating. There are many private schooling institutions, all offering a varied curriculum for those who are looking to meet specific criteria. With a couple of tertiary education institutions scattered across the island, there are options for your children when considering their post-schooling education.

Most expatriates opt to keep their children in domestic schools or colleges, though they would have to meet certain criteria set out by the “Equivalence” department of the Ministry of Education. Another available option to parents, is to enrol their kids in one of the French schooling systems on the island, which will introduce them to a new language and social- and cultural development.

The Mauritian government holds the view that everyone has the right to education and advocates for providing access to education. As such, they recently implemented a basic education reform known as the Nine-Year Schooling program. This program offers the full cycle of 11 years compulsory schooling for free at all state institutions, of which 9 years are to be concluded consecutively. The aim of this innovative strategy is to develop a holistic learning program which will secure the future of the Mauritian workforce.

Student Visas in Mauritius

If you are a non-citizen and you are hoping to go to Mauritius to continue your higher studies, then there is always the option of applying for a student visa. This permit will enable you to enter and stay in Mauritius for the duration of your studies, whether full-time or part-time.

To apply for this visa, you will need a letter of admission from a recognized tertiary educational institution or Technical and Vocational Educational and Training (TVET) institution where you have enrolled. The institution you wish to attend must be registered with the Tertiary Education Commission or the Mauritius Qualification Authority. You will also need documentary evidence of availability of funds, as well as accreditation from local establishments regarding the timeframes for the program or course you wish to complete.

Once your studies have been completed, there is always the option of applying for a Young Professionals Permit, which will enable postgraduates to find employment after concluding their degrees.

Another favourable change is that the dependency age of 24 no longer applies. In other words, if your children join you as dependents, they will have more time to conclude their studies or to find their feet after they have finished their schooling. This is also in line with the government’s family-friendly approach to immigration.

Whether you intend to relocate to Mauritius for work and/or seeking schooling solutions for your children before setting off, then it’s best to do a lot of research and to consult an immigration expert who knows a thing or two about the Mauritius relocation process.