Education and Schools in Gibraltar
Education in Gibraltar largely follows the British model with a few structural differences, and expats can choose from a small selection of state schools. There are a couple of private schools and while there are no international schools in Gibraltar, many expats working in Gibraltar live over the border in Spain, and send their children to the international school in Sotogrande, or the one in Marbella.
Public schools in Gibraltar
Education in Gibraltar is compulsory from ages four to 15, during which time it is provided free of charge. Nursery school is optional and can be attended at age three, prior to the start of formal schooling.
First school (otherwise known as primary school) is compulsory and attended from age four to seven. Middle school is from age eight to 11, while secondary school with sixth form is for ages 12 to 18. Though students can legally stop attending school at age 15 after the completion of the GCSEs, most students continue to attend school and move onto the sixth form.
It's worth mentioning that public primary schools in Gibraltar are co-educational while public middle and secondary schools are single-sex.
Private and international schools in Gibraltar
Private schools in Gibraltar include Loreto Convent School, a co-ed junior school, and Prior Park School, a co-ed secondary school set in a stunning location, high up on The Rock. Both are Roman Catholic schools with teaching taking place through the lens of Catholic beliefs and conventions.
Due to the extremely limited availability of private schools in Gibraltar, parents who want to pursue this route should apply well ahead of time to secure a spot.
As there are no international schools in Gibraltar, expats who are set on sending their child to an international school will have to extend their search beyond the border and into Spain. The nearest international school is in Sotogrande, and there are a few in Marbella too.
Some of Spain's international schools offer boarding facilities, but thanks to the regular and cheap flights to the UK, many expats and local Gibraltarians choose to send their children to boarding schools in England.