I am currently a grade 11 student doing the IB curriculum at NIST.
NIST is a school of around 2000 students from kindergarten to high school level. I think the rough proportions are 40% Thai, and 60% International, including a large proportion of Japanese people in the school. People are not ranked by class really except for the mathematical classes where they group my faculty.
I would describe the school culture as very service and sports focused. Teachers love hardworking students and these are the ones who get the top leadership positions. Parent interference is not an issue at this school. NIST also has a house system, full school assemblies and also sports games which really unite the schools and everyone is very proud of our athletic performance.
Most teachers are willing to help outside the class, and there’s some very good ones who have been around for a long time. They are usually happy to help you outside hours and through email. Our classes are very structured and we use google classrooms which are fine. Teachers also supervise extra-curricular which mean its easy to build relationships with them.
Most people get some kind of tutoring, usually a lot of maths tutoring on the side.
I think one of the downsides is that not many people like to involve themselves in extra-curricular outside the hours needed in the IB diploma. There are so many opportunities and we have so much freedom and support to start our own initiatives but its not as popular. Summer Programs in the US and UK are very popular such as Switzerland and top boarding schools in the US.
Career counsellors start sessions with you in grade 9 and assess your grades and candidacy. We have sessions biweekly but it’s not 1 on 1, but in groups of around 10 students. Some people disregard them and the general perception is that there are pretty average. There’s about 4 counsellors. Thai students usually go to top universities in Thailand while a lot of people go to the US and UK.
I think NIST is still one of the best schools to be in Bangkok after ISB which I think has a more rigorous and organised extra-curricular system especially for people who want to do STEM like me, but I’m happy here.