Expats have a variety of choice when it comes to education and schools in Johannesburg. There are many government-run public schools of varying quality, independent private schools as well as international schools. The majority of expats send their children to private or international schools in and around the city.
As is the case almost everywhere, the waiting lists for the best schools in Johannesburg are long, and expats are advised to apply as far in advance as possible if they want their children to attend their school of choice.
Public schools in Johannesburg
Some government schools in Johannesburg have excellent track records. Regrettably, however, these are the exception. Those supported solely by government funding are generally understaffed with limited resources.
The better public schools are those that obtain additional funding from fee-paying parents, alumni donations and governing bodies. Though these schools are still limited to offering the standard South African curriculum, the quality of education and facilities is higher than regular public schools. Parents will have to pay fees at these institutions but the prices are lower than those of private and international schools.
Private schools in Johannesburg
There are a number of good options for private schools in Johannesburg. As they are funded privately, they have more freedom with regards to what curriculum they offer. Many private schools, therefore, teach through the lens of a particular religion, such as Catholicism, or alternative educational philosophy, like Montessori.
Many private schools have excellent academic standards as well as a wide range of extra-curricular activities, all taking place within pristine facilities. Fees at these schools can be high, though they are generally lower than international school fees.
International schools in Johannesburg
There is a handful of international schools in Johannesburg serving the expat population. These schools offer foreign curricula such as that of the UK, the US or the International Baccalaureate.
The main advantage of international schools is that they allow expat children to continue with a familiar, globally recognised curriculum. They're also an ideal place for both children and parents alike to make friends with other expat families. Though fees are high and waiting lists long, most parents agree that the quality of education is well worth it.
Are you an expat living in Johannesburg?
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