Will a Chinese boarding school be coming to Federal Way in the future?
In December 2017, Kidder Mathews Federal Way helped close a purchase deal worth about $4 million for the vacant lot at the northeast corner of South 320th Street and 1st Avenue South, located across from the Chamber of Commerce building. The vacant site currently includes homeless encampments.
The purpose of the deal was for the buying couple, Chao Qiang Yuan and Hao Yuan, to construct a Chinese school, said Mark Clirehugh, senior vice president of Kidder Mathews.
Clirehugh said that according to the broker of the deal, Dien Le, the property’s buyers own multiple boarding schools in China and want to build a similar one in Federal Way. Dien Le was unavailable for immediate comment on the matter.
From Clirehugh’s understanding, the school would not be built for Federal Way residents. Rather, it would be a boarding school for students from China, he said.
An article from The Economist reports that sending children to boarding schools is much more common in China, in both rural and urbanized areas.Because of the high importance Chinese culture places on education, as well as the typical nuclear one-child families, it is more common for parents and their children to live apart while the children are in school.
Because no construction has started on the Federal Way school and it is unclear when construction may begin, Clirehugh said he has speculated this may be an investment purchase.
According to a November 2017 report in the Seattle Times, there has been an increase in interest from homebuyers in China. King County has become a sought-after region for purchasing homes or investing. Some of the reasoning for this could be the quality of local school systems, the cleaner air and renowned companies like Boeing and Amazon, according to the report.
More information on the potential Chinese boarding school will be released once it is available.