In Sao Paulo, and other cities as well such as Rio, if you want your child to have a good to exceptional future, you need to send them to private school. Many Brazilians, if they can, elect to have their kids attend an international, English speaking school.
On Monday, Day 149 of my challenge to do something Brazilian every day, we went to see the British College of Brazil. Because this is a new school, it actually has less Brazilians attending than the other international options. Brazilian kids make up about 70+ percent of the American and British schools in Sao Paulo. But this one only had a couple families that were pure Brazilians. Might also be because the Brazilians who can pay for this category of private education demand a larger campus for their little ones.
This school is small (because they are still in the process of building), but cute, and the educational program seemed solid. Of course, as are the other international school, and similar to Manhattan, it is ridiculously expensive and there is a waiting list.
The decision between international and Brazilian school has been a difficult one for us. The good Brazilian schools are very good in terms of education, and you really get some mixed reviews from parents on their international contenders. But if we want to ever go back to the U.S., our daughter is going to need to have her education in English. Regardless, the good Brazilian schools are also difficult to get into.
So we put her name on a bunch of waiting lists and leave it up to the hand of fate.