Top 10 Best International Schools in Amsterdam, The Netherlands

Top 10 Best International Schools in Amsterdam, The Netherlands

International Schools in Amsterdam

There are 19 international schools in Amsterdam and the surrounding area, 3 of these are British schools and 7 are International Baccalaureate schools.

About Amsterdam

Amsterdam, the capital city of The Netherlands, has a population of around 850,000 in the city and 2.4 million in the metropolitan area.  Amsterdam is well known around the world for its long, fascinating history and cultural heritage.  It is famous for its unique architecture, extensive canal network and comprehensive system of cycle routes.  Cycling is a very popular and easy way to get around the city, in fact there are actually more bikes than people in Amsterdam.  Public transport, via trains, trams, the metro, bus and ferry,  is also straightforward and convenient.  Amsterdam is a very family friendly city with hundreds of playgrounds and child friendly cafés around the city.  The Dutch, and their children, have frequently featured highly in, or topped, a variety of world happiness ratings.  Dutch families combine traditional family values with mutual respect and a desire to raise independent children.  They also have a good work life balance and parents share their child-rearing responsibilities.  One little known fact about Amsterdam is that it has beaches.  Strand Zuid, Dok and Sloterplas, around the periphery of the city, all have beach restaurants, water and sand.

Amsterdam Schools

The south of the city, Oud Zuid, with its leafy, green neighbourhoods and wealth of cafés and shops, is considered to be the most chic and expensive part of Amsterdam.  There are many residential neighbourhoods with carefully preserved older houses and well built, spacious apartments.  It is bordered by Amsterdam’s largest city park, the Vondelpark and is home to Winford Bilingual Primary School, Lycée Francais Vincent Van Gough, The British School of Amsterdam and Amsterdam International Community School.

Further south is the area of Amstelveen, quieter, greener and yet still within 15 minutes of the city and the airport.  Housing here is a little less expensive and there are more properties with their own garden.  This area contains the enormous Amsterdamse Bos (Amsterdam Forest) and is home to Amity International School, The International School of Amsterdam and Florencius International School.

Further out of the city to the west is the town of Hoofddorp, leafy and green with excellent shopping, plenty of suburban housing and new developments underway.  It is becoming increasingly popular with international families and has excellent transport connections into Amsterdam, Den Haag and the airport.  Frequent trains to the airport take only 4 minutes.  Hoofddorp is home to the Optimist International School and Gifted Minds International School.

To the north of Hoofddorp is the beautiful, old city of Haarlem with its cobbled streets and traditional gabled houses.  Haarlem has excellent shopping and a great selection of cafés and restaurants.  The residential areas are within easy cycle access of both the city centre and the North Sea beaches and Amsterdam is only 15 minutes away by train.  Haarlem is home to the International School Haarlem.    

Often likened to a miniature version of Amsterdam, Haarlem has a similarly picturesque old-world charm, with cobbled streets, winding waterways and gabled houses. Though rich with historic architecture, it’s a lively city packed with culture, nightlife, dining hotspots and some of the best shopping streets in the country. All that vivid history inspires plenty of entrepreneurial vision too, with young digital businesses and agencies gravitating to Haarlem, while rejuvenation is a key characteristic (just look at the Jopenkerk, a former church in the centre, transformed into a thriving brewery, café and restaurant).

Another area that should be mentioned is Almere.  Situated across the Ij (pronounced eye) to the north east of the city, Almere is one of the newest cities in the Amsterdam area.  This area is built on reclaimed land and has a modern architectural aesthetic.  Houses are modern and spacious with gardens and are located in small, safe neighbourhoods with plenty of good cafés, restaurants and shops.  The area is very leafy and green with plenty of parks and playgrounds that many children cycle to on their own.  Transport links are good and trains to Amsterdam take only 20 minutes.  This area is home to the International School Almere and the International Primary School Almere.


Before the ranking, check out our Featured Best Schools in Amsterdam:

The British School of Amsterdam

 My youngest son is well supported and enjoys going to school every day at BSA!  

The British School of Amsterdam logo

Ages
3 to 18

Curriculum
English

Primary Language
English


Ages
3 to 14

Curriculum
French

Primary Language
French


Where Amsterdam international schools are distributed (view our List of International Schools in Amsterdam to see a live map):

Best international schools in Amsterdam

Best International Schools in Amsterdam - Rankings

Note: our rankings are based on parent, pupil and teacher reviews. If you think your Amsterdam school should be in the top 10, get reviewing - we want to hear from real people with real experiences at schools so parents, teachers and pupils get the real story when they research their next school. You can find your school in the full List of International Schools in Amsterdam, or search by name here.

If you prefer, you can filter by age, curriculum and language on the Amsterdam school list.

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Optimist International School 

5.0 from 8 reviews

Curriculum

English,International

Primary Language

English

Ages

4 to 11

Description

Optimist International School Amsterdam is a primary school for children 4 - 11 years old.  Our wonderful new school building in Floriande, Hoofddorp (metropolitan region of Amsterdam) is well-equipped to offer a rigorous and inspiring international curriculum.

The beautiful Haarlemmermeerse bos and area around us provides our school with many opportunities for outdoor learning. We are a caring international community that guides children to become compassionate, committed global citizens.

We provide our pupils opportunities to discover and develop their unique talents. 

 Read Optimist International School reviews

Florencius International School 

5.0 from 5 reviews

Curriculum

International

Primary Language

English

Ages

5 to 12

Description

Florencius International School is an independent private primary school (3-11) and is situated in leafy surroundings close to Amsterdam. At Florencius we follow the International Primary Curriculum (IPC) and British standards. Our focus lies both with the academic and the social/emotional development of our students.

We offer small classes, individual attention and a warm and safe environment.
Because of our holistic approach, children at Florencius International School develop into positive but critical, self-confident global citizens. High ambitions also ensure we know how to get the best out of each student.

Our close collaboration with the Florencius Dutch primary school means that our school is an excellent choice for children and families who are interested in an international education, but also want to feel at home in The Netherlands or already have a home in The Netherlands. We are also the best choice for children who need a safe, small and familiar environment in order to develop and flourish.

 Read Florencius International School reviews

Winford Bilingual Primary School 

5.0 from 5 reviews

Curriculum

International, Montessori

Primary Language

English

Ages

4 to 12

Description

Winford Bilingual Amsterdam provides a fully immersive, dual-language primary education in the heart of Amsterdam. Our goal is to provide the highest quality bilingual education that prepares your child for life beyond the primary classroom. 

Our unique curriculum combines the Dutch and UK curricula with the International Primary Curriculum (IPC) and Montessori ideals. Children are immersed in both Dutch and English throughout the entire school day.

Each classroom has a fully qualified English and Dutch speaking teacher. Each teacher speaks their native language to our students, and all subjects are taught in both languages. This helps Winford Bilingual Primary School children develop their communication and comprehension abilities in both Dutch and English.

 Read Winford Bilingual Primary School reviews

De Nieuwe Internationale School Esprit 

5.0 from 4 reviews

Curriculum

IB, Dutch, International

Primary Language

English

Ages

4 to 18

Description

De Nieuwe Internationale School van Esprit (DENISE) offers widely accessible international education of high quality standing in present society with broad awareness of the collective responsibility for the world we live in.

De Nieuwe Internationale School van Esprit wants to achieve this by offering a broad international curriculum as well as an anchor for life in The Netherlands. DENISE uses five different programs so every student can be served at their own needs and personal choices. Besides the academic learning goals DENISE also puts great emphasis on the students’ personal development. Qualities such as cooperation, thoughtfulness, resilience and adaptability are fostered in a systematic way. Finally, DENISE wants to be a place where parents actively participate and help form the program’s international profile.

DENISE stands for high quality international education, as well as an anchor for life in the Netherlands. It does so by offering an English-Dutch Dual Language program based on the International Primary Curriculum (IPC) for Primary education and on the International Middle Years Curriculum (IMYC) for Middle Years education.

Through the IPC students learn to engage with the material in meaningful and exciting ways, such as inquiry-based learning and learning through discovery. Thanks to the flexible structure of the IPC, every child can develop according to their own pace and learning style. Besides the academic learning goals, the IPC also puts great emphasis on the students’ personal development. Qualities such as thoughtfulness, resilience and adaptability are fostered in a systematic way.

Our aim is to ensure that our students receive high quality Dual Language education from the first year on. Our Dual Language Program helps develop our students’ speaking, reading and writing skills building on their existing (first) language skills. With the help of an Dutch class teacher on three days and a English class teacher on two days, students are enabled to explore and learn in both languages.

 Read De Nieuwe Internationale School Esprit reviews

The British School of Amsterdam logo The British School of Amsterdam 

5.0 from 4 reviews

Curriculum

English

Primary Language

English

Ages

3 to 18

Max Class Size

24

Description

The British School of Amsterdam The British School of Amsterdam is an accredited world-class provider of the National Curriculum used in England to the international community in Amsterdam.

We have three school sections, each with their own distinctive character. The Early Years School is for children aged 3 to 6 years old, the Junior School for 6 to 11 year olds and the Senior School for 11 to 18 year olds.

We have just moved our three schools to one re-designed, re-engineered building with some of the finest educational facilities in the city including a magnificent sports hall, a full-sized theatre, fully equipped science laboratories and specially designed music rooms.

Your child will find an atmosphere of purposeful curiosity, essential for developing the love of learning and becoming independent thinkers. In tandem with an academic focus, our school encourages every child to develop in other important ways such as life skills and whatever their talents, to the joys and opportunities outside the classroom in the arts, sports, hobbies, teamwork and leadership activities.

 Read The British School of Amsterdam reviews

Amity International School Amsterdam 

4.8 from 8 reviews

Curriculum

International

Primary Language

English

Ages

3 to 14

Description

Amity International School Amsterdam is a young and vibrant school based in Amstelveen. The school opened in February 2018 and is continuing to grow and flourish.

We pride ourselves in supporting and challenging every student to achieve excellence in their behaviour, academic work, sport, the arts, culture, citizenship, spirituality and relationships. We place particular emphasis on providing the students with opportunities to develop leadership and collaborative skills, as well as finding ways for them all to serve others and contribute to the wider community. 

Amity International School Amsterdam is a fully international school with students and staff from 39 different countries. Being such a diverse school allows us to learn from each other and helps your child to gain a better understanding of what it means to be a global citizen and internationally minded. 

 Read Amity International School Amsterdam reviews

Gifted Minds International School 

4.8 from 6 reviews

Curriculum

International

Primary Language

English

Ages

3 to 12

Description

Gifted Minds International School (GMIS) is the first international school to be located at Hoofddrop that has approximately 2000 sq meters of a former office building with 4 levels ,has been converted to a school learning environment for international students.GMIS has raised the global bar for our students learning to golden international standards with our eclectic teaching approaches and pedagogical practices. Our current research based curriculum that caters to each individual child’s needs.

At GMIS,teachers and students invent,rethink,co-construct and innovate ideas for teaching and learning processes which are combined in excellence with equity for the paradigm of international education.All students and staff at GMIS have meaningful targets and measurable goals to achieve, for the pillar of primary school international education.

 Read Gifted Minds International School reviews

International School Haarlem 

4.7 from 3 reviews

Curriculum

English,International

Primary Language

English

Ages

4 to 14

Description

The International School Haarlem (ISH), which offers an international curriculum, opened its doors in September 2017. At The International School Haarlem our vision is to develop a community of caring, compassionate, honest, open-minded global citizens who enjoy learning in critical and creative ways. We strive to develop a positive sense of self and engage with our world on a local and global scale.

At ISH our vision is to develop a community of caring, compassionate, honest, open-minded global citizens who enjoy learning in critical and creative ways. We strive to develop a positive sense of self and engage with our world on a local and global scale.

 Read International School Haarlem reviews

The International School of Amsterdam 

4.7 from 3 reviews

Curriculum

IB

Primary Language

English

Ages

2 to 18

Description

At The International School of Amsterdam (ISA), we challenge our students to discover themselves and the world around them, inspiring them to become life-long learners. ISA was the first school in the world authorised to teach a complete International Baccalaureate curriculum, which is taught at more than 3,900 schools in over 140 countries.

As an IB World School, ISA offers a curriculum that allows students to benefit from a continuum of education from preschool through high school.

 Read The International School of Amsterdam reviews

The Japanese School of Amsterdam 

4.6 from 5 reviews

Curriculum

Japanese

Primary Language

Japanese

Ages

6 to 16

Description

The Japanese School of Amsterdam (JSA) is a Japanese language school founded in 1969. It is a medium sized school with around 200 students situated in the western part of Amsterdam.

In order to improve communication skills, Dutch and English conversation classes are held from the first grade of elementary school. In addition, in order to enhance local understanding, education exchanges with local schools and off-campus learning are conducted. Through these activities, JSA will improve the international sense of students.

 Read The Japanese School of Amsterdam reviews

Other International Schools in Amsterdam

There are 9 other international schools in Amsterdam that didn't make it into our Top 10, either because they didn't have enough reviews or its review rating was too low. If your school is one of those and you think it should make the Top 10, make sure you add your review and tell your story via the school links below.

School Curriculum Rating
International Primary School Almere International 4.2 / 5
Amsterdam International Community School IB 4.0 / 5
International Primary School Hilversum IB 3.5 / 5
Lycée Francais Vincent Van Gogh French 3.2 / 5
International School Almere IB 3.1 / 5
International School Hilversum Alberdingk Thijm IB 2.9 / 5
European School of Bergen European Baccalaureate 2.0 / 5
International School Laren IB n/a
International French School of Amsterdam French n/a

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Juliet Ryder

My family and I are originally from the UK but have also lived in Australia and Spain. We have always wanted to make sure that our 3 boys have the best possible experience living abroad and that our travels have a positive impact on their education.


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