The Top 15 Best International Schools Seoul, South Korea

The Top 15 Best International Schools Seoul, South Korea

South Korea’s capital city of Seoul, with its urban population of almost 10 million and metropolitan area population of 25 million, is a modern megacity.  It has the one of the largest metropolitan populations in the world, second only to Tokyo.  In spite of its size, Seoul is a very clean, safe city where modern skycrapers, futuristic architecture and high-tech subways meet beautiful palaces, Buddhist temples and numerous busy street markets. 

Re-greening

Over the last 15 years the Seoul Metropolitan Government have been actively re-greening the city which has resulted in noticeable improvements in air quality, wildlife and city living.  The new green spaces around the city include wooded areas, a restored (formerly underground) river with riverside walks, community gardens, play areas for children, exercise equipment, art installations and education facilities.  Seoul is also surrounded by many natural areas of forested mountains.   

Getting around

Most South Koreans are taught English as a second language at school but it is not widely spoken, especially by the older generations.  Any writing on road and street signs is usually in the Korean alphabet and either English or a romanised translation.  Driving can be a little daunting as the roads are very busy and the lane system can be confusing.  Pink Parking spaces, giving priority for women, are situated close to the entrance of many offices and shops.  If you prefer not to drive however, public transport is inexpensive and efficient.  

South Koreans are generally helpful and friendly and love children.  In Seoul there are plenty of themed restaurants aimed at children and supervised play spaces within shopping malls and restaurants. 

Food

Korean food is now becoming popular around the world.  There are many different restaurants and dishes to try.  Street food is also available everywhere, is inexpensive and has an excellent reputation.

Climate

Seoul has hot, humid Summers with the odd monsoon (June to August) and cold, dry Winters with the occasional covering of snow.

Age

Living in Korea will age you!  Everyone is 1 from birth and becomes one year older on New Year’s Day (mostly going by the Chinese New Year).  This means that your Korean age will be one or two years older than your Western age.

Best areas for family living

The districts that Seoul is divided up into are known as gu, within these are the neighbourhoods known as dong. 

The Han River runs through the centre of the city.  Most expats live north of the river but there are some popular, new neighbourhoods to the south of the river. 

North of the river

Itaewon-dong

Itaewon is a hilly area bordering onto the Namsan Mountain Park with a busy main street full of unique shops, restaurants, bars and clubs.  It is well served by public transport probably the most popular area with expats.  It is possible to find villas and large family houses with gardens here.

Hannam-dong

Hannam is a modern and sophisticated area adjacent to Itaewon, but a little further from the subway station, with stylish boutiques, galleries, restaurants and quirky cafes.  The housing here is mostly comprised of villas and large family houses with the most exclusive residential areas being the UN Village, The Hill and Richensia Apartments. 

Ichon-dong

Ichon is home to the urban nature themed I-Park shopping mall and close to the Yongsan Family Park and Dragon Falls.  Ichon has a large community of Japanese expats so there is a great selection of authentic Japanese restaurants here.  Most of the accommodation in this area is in apartment complexes and very convenient for public transport.

Seongbuk-dong 

Seongbuk is an affluent village in the hills to the north of the city centre surrounded by mountain parks with trails, temples and pagodas and bordered by the old fortress wall.  This area has plenty of restaurants and cafés, lovely gardens, historic houses, many large, family homes and is still commutable into the city centre.

South of the river

Gangnam-gu

Gangnam, famous around the world now thanks to K Pop band PSY, is a popular, affluent residential district with a large international community and also home to many Koreans. Gangnam is modern and stylish area full of new, luxurious apartments, offices, designer shops, upmarket restaurants and exclusive nightclubs.  Gangnam does have some quieter areas like Daechi-dong, a number of beautiful parks and a Buddhist temple.  This area is very central and well served by public transport.

For expats living in Seoul, there are around 21 schools to choose from. Below is a map of where the Seoul international schools are located.

Best Schools Seoul

You can see a a live map and the full directory of international schools in Seoul or the top 15 below.

Best International Schools Seoul - Rankings

Note: our rankings are based on parent, pupil and teacher reviews. If you think your Seoul school should be in the top 15, 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 choose their next school. You can find your school in the Seoul schools directory, or search by name here.


Dulwich College Seoul 

5.0 from 5 reviews
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Curriculum:English, IB Primary Language:English
Age Range:3 to 18
DESCRIPTION

Dulwich College Seoul was the fourth to join the Dulwich College International (DCI) family of schools, opening its doors in 2010. The College is made up of 700 students from age 3 to age 18, with over forty different nationalities represented in our diverse student body. Our links to Dulwich College, founded in 1619, are strong, and we collaborate closely with the other schools in the network to encourage an international outlook and create an extended community where academic ability is fostered, creativity is valued, and diversity is celebrated. Our class teachers and form tutors are responsible not only for every student’s academic development, but also for ensuring they receive the pastoral support they need. Dulwich College Seoul has a pastoral support team for students at all levels, and all of them follow a Personal, Social and Health Education (PSHE) course appropriate to their age and coordinated across the year groups.

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Chadwick International School 

5.0 from 4 reviews
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Curriculum:IB Primary Language:English
Age Range:4 to 18
DESCRIPTION

Chadwick International School is deeply committed to self-discovery through experience and reflection. Students develop the joy of learning, self-confidence, well-being, and curiosity through interactive and practical experiences. Our schools share the core values of respect, responsibility, honesty, fairness, and compassion. Chadwick School has grown significantly since opening in 1935, but the legacy of its founder, Margaret Lee Chadwick, remains a driving force behind the school’s continued development. Now in its 75th year, Chadwick has more than 800 students in kindergarten through Grade 12 and has graduated more than 3,000 students. One of Chadwick's most significant milestones is the founding in 2010 of Chadwick International School in Songdo, South Korea, expanding opportunities for students around the globe to benefit from a world-class Chadwick education and become lifelong members of the Chadwick Community. Chadwick International School develops global citizens with keen minds, exemplary character, self-knowledge, and the ability to lead.

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Global Christian Foreign School 

5.0 from 4 reviews
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Curriculum:American Primary Language:English
Age Range:5 to 18
DESCRIPTION

Our continuous vision for Global Christian Foreign School (GCFS) is for each and every individual student to be raised up and released as global Christian leaders. And in the last 20 years, approximately 40 different nations came to receive Christian education from the Christ-centered standards and values we uphold. This vision has been possible through the many faithful kingdom workers that have partnered with us in bringing excellence in teaching, serving, and raising up each student. 

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Korea International School Seoul 

5.0 from 4 reviews
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Curriculum:American Primary Language:English
Age Range:3 to 11
DESCRIPTION

Korea International School Seoul (KIS) is a school that values its Western tradition in education, and to this, the school has established a challenging and well-rounded academic curriculum, where the arts, student activities and athletics are also highly valued. The students are nurtured to acquire ‘habits of mind’ such as problem solving, decision-making, critical and creative thinking skills as well as to gain academic success. At KIS Seoul, we pride ourselves in our ability to deliver high-quality education in a small campus setting. With low student-teacher ratios, the campus is ideally suited to give all learners that special care and attention they require in their formative years.

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Cheongna Dalton School 

5.0 from 3 reviews
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Curriculum:American Primary Language:English
Age Range:4 to 18
DESCRIPTION

Cheongna Dalton School (CDS) is the only International School fully accredited by both the Korean Government and Western Association of Schools and Colleges(WASC). CDS was founded by the Bongduk Education Foundation that established Hangaram High School in Seoul, Korea. Inspired by the success of Hangaram High School, the Foundation hoped to establish a school committing in pursuing the cultivation of the creativity, adaptability, self-motivation and leadership. In September of 2010, the Foundation made an agreement with the Dalton School in New York to launch the faithful innovation of education. Cheongna Dalton School was established on the first of September in 2011 and offers curriculum for grade K~12.

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Lycée Francais de Séoul 

5.0 from 3 reviews
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Curriculum:French Primary Language:English
Age Range:3 to 18
DESCRIPTION

The Lycée Français de Seoul is an institution whose teaching is fully approved by the French Ministry of Education. The programs are in accordance with the official instructions in all points, from the class of Small Kindergarten to Grade 12. The Lycée Français de Seoul is part of the network of AEFE (Agency for French Education Abroad), agency under the supervision of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs. This network of more than 400 schools, unique in the world, is present in nearly 135 countries

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German School Seoul International 

4.9 from 5 reviews
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Curriculum:German, IB Primary Language:English
Age Range:2 to 18
DESCRIPTION

German School Seoul International (GSSI) was founded in 1976. It serves German expatriate families, other foreigners and Koreans living in the South Korean capital and its surroundings. GSSI school is approved by the Federal Republic of Germany as a private foreign school. It is one of 140 German international schools certified as an "excellent German international school" by the Federal Office of Administration

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Seoul International School 

4.7 from 4 reviews
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Curriculum:American Primary Language:English
Age Range:4 to 18
DESCRIPTION

Seoul International School (SIS) develops inquisitive, independent thinkers and collaborative learners, who acquire the essential knowledge necessary to be caring and creative contributors to the world around them. Seoul International School is an academic institute whose purpose is to provide a challenging U.S. curriculum to meet the primary and secondary educational needs of international students living in Seoul, Korea. The school is committed to the arts, humanities and sciences as the best preparation for higher education, for service to humanity and for life-long learning in our rapidly changing world. Our efforts focus on developing students’ intellectual, creative, moral, physical and emotional abilities to their fullest, in cooperation with parents and the global community. SIS seeks to offer a broad set of educational experiences, both curricular and co-curricular, in an environment that is safe, orderly and supportive.

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Gyeonggi Suwon International School 

4.4 from 5 reviews
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Curriculum:IB Primary Language:English
Age Range:3 to 18
DESCRIPTION

Gyeonggi Suwon International School (GSIS) is proud to be the first fully accredited three program International Baccalaureate (IB) World School in the greater Seoul area, and the second such school on the Korean peninsula. Students progress through the Primary Years (PYP), Middle Years (MYP), and the Diploma (DP) programmes as they move towards matriculation in a thriving academic environment. The school services both the educational and co-curricular needs of more than 500 Kindergarten - Grade 12 students and their families. Located in Suwon, a short commute south of Seoul, Gyeonggi Suwon International School provides a dynamic learning environment, passionately committed to “educating the whole child.” A quality international education addresses both academic and co-curricular facets of a learner’s life. To facilitate this process GSIS offers a wide range of co-curricular programs including athletics, fine arts and performing arts, special interest clubs, and various service opportunities. All this in addition to a robust academic program.

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Yongsan International School of Seoul 

4.3 from 4 reviews
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Curriculum:American Primary Language:English
Age Range:5 to 18
DESCRIPTION

Yongsan International School of Seoul (YISS) is a warm, inclusive community of students, parents, and Christian educators. We welcome families and students of all religions and worldviews from more than 50 countries, providing a rich multicultural student experience anchored in the core principles of truth, excellence, and diversity. Within this nurturing, close-knit environment, a shared commitment to individual student success is fostered by a team of highly qualified, passionate faculty and staff who inspire a love of learning and unleash each student’s potential to achieve. It is an extraordinary educational experience that empowers students and prepares them to excel in college and beyond, anywhere in the world. Yongsan International School of Seoul was established as "a renowned, world class educational institution for the children of foreign investors in Korea" by the Korean Foreign Schools Foundation.

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Seoul Academy 

4.2 from 4 reviews
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Curriculum:IB Primary Language:English
Age Range:4 to 14
DESCRIPTION

Seoul Academy provides all students with vast opportunities for learning and community involvement. The entire Seoul Academy community shares the responsibility for building the academic success of each student. The mission of Seoul Academy is to ensure students achieve their maximum potential and lead humane, creative, literate, trustworthy, self-directed and self-sufficient lives.

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Korea Foreign School 

4.0 from 5 reviews
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Curriculum:IB Primary Language:English
Age Range:6 to 16
DESCRIPTION

Korea Foreign School (KFS) is a non-profit private day-school. Located in Seoul, South Korea, Korea Foreign School opened its doors to students in September 2007. KFS is a non-denominational school which proudly represents students from more than 20 different countries. Its multicultural atmosphere is both warm and friendly. Korea Foreign School is an IB World School for the International Baccalaureate (IB) Primary Years Programme (PYP) and for Middle Years Programme (MYP). PYP and MYP are fully inclusive programmes where all students participate in the IB curricula. For a student to be an effective global citizen, he/she must be able to logically interpret and utilize the intersection between people and community as a guide in decision making. In addition to the basic academic program, students will participate in both local and extended field trips. Students will have opportunities to perform music and drama and to display artwork.

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Seoul Scholars 

4.0 from 3 reviews
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Curriculum:American, English Primary Language:English
Age Range:13 to 18
DESCRIPTION

Seoul Scholars is a college preparatory private academy that challenges students with rigorous academic programs specifically tailored to prepare them for the demands of higher education abroad. Building upon the diversity of current climate, we aim to prepare students to contribute and thrive in a heterogeneous academic environment. Seoul Scholars will enable students to develop skills to achieve their goals and in turn to be thoughtful leaders in their respective fields and of their generation. Our mission is to provide stimulating and challenging education that prepares and inspires students for successful academic careers. To accomplish our goal, we put emphasis on rigorous and advanced curriculum. The development of skills in writing and oral communication, acquisition of mastery in subjects, critical thinking and understanding social responsibilities are all part of the Seoul Scholars education.

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Seoul Foreign School 

3.6 from 5 reviews
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Curriculum:English,IB Primary Language:English
Age Range:2 to 18
DESCRIPTION

Seoul Foreign School (SFS) encourages you to visit our beautiful campus and see for yourself the unique atmosphere, the four individual schools, the incredible athletics and arts facilities and the truly committed teachers and staff members. We have just built a very impressive state of the art High School ready for the 2018-19 academic year. It embodies our spirit of Building For the Future. All Seoul Foreign School students have access to a world-class learning experience which will prepare them for a rich and happy life when they move on to prestigious universities around the world. A spirit of excellence and service has permeated Seoul Foreign School for over a century and we hope to welcome you as a part of that in years to come.

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Lycée International Xavier 

3.2 from 4 reviews
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Curriculum:French Primary Language:French
Age Range:5 to 18
DESCRIPTION

Lycée International Xavier was founded in March 2002 in order to cultivate humanitarian spirited people who will be able to interact harmoniously with people from different cultures in a multicultural world.

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Don't forget!

This is just the first few schools listed according to their review scores. There are plenty more amazing schools in our database.

Thanks for reading!

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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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