Figuring out international schools in the Netherlands can be quite the palaver, but we’re here to help. Here is all you need to know in 2020 when it comes to picking out an international education in the Netherlands.

First of all, what are international schools?

International schools in the Netherlands are schools where children who are not native to the Netherlands (usually) study. The schools, therefore, have students from a variety of different cultures and nationalities and they provide an international education.

The schools either have an international curriculum, which is recognized everywhere, or they take up the national curriculum of a different country (for example a British International School would follow a British curriculum).

If you’re new to the whole school system in the Netherlands and wondering what we might be yammering on about, then be sure to check our other guide to schools in the Netherlands first. Otherwise, this whole thing about international schools in the Netherlands may get a tad confusing if you’re new here. 😉

Now let us give you the low down on international schools in the Netherlands:

How do you qualify for international schools in the Netherlands?

Not everyone qualifies to go to an international school and this is set by the Dutch Ministry of Education, so be sure to check that you qualify (well, that your little one does) before you make this kind of decision. You must be:

  • A child who was not born into a Dutch family and is planning on staying in the Netherlands for a limited amount of time.

OR

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  • A child with Dutch nationality, however, the parents are due to be temporarily stationed abroad for at least two years and will leave within two years.

OR

  • A child who is from a Dutch family, but who have pursued their education abroad themselves and therefore want to have their child in a similar learning environment

Without one of these conditions being met, you won’t be able to put your child into an international school in the Netherlands. Sorrrryy. 

How much does it cost to go to an international school in the Netherlands?

The costs of international schools in the Netherlands?! That’s the big scary question that people would rather avoid.

Well, international schools in the Netherlands certainly aren’t cheap (for private education especially). You have a choice of Dutch public international schools and private international schools. A public primary charges around €3,600 to €6,600 per year and a secondary costs around €5,500 to €8,500 per year. Private international schools are much, much more — you are looking to pay as much as €25,000 per year! These are all mandatory fees and don’t include extracurricular activities and other school trips. 

Ouch…

What is the curriculum in international schools?

Each school varies, so it’s worth looking up the actual school to see what curriculum they follow. However, I will give you a quick low-down on what curriculum and what language is usually used at international schools in the Netherlands.

If you are looking for a school that teaches the curriculum in your native language, try a Foreign National School — these schools will teach in their native language. For example, a ‘British International School’ will teach in English. However, in general, the language of teaching for private international schools and private Dutch schools is usually English, therefore this would be the best option for your child if you want your child to learn in English.

In terms of national diplomas, both British and American schools always teach in their own curriculum’s, along with offering additional diplomas. The British School offers A-Levels however, which are the qualifications taken as you leave school at 18 in the UK.

What about bilingual education in the Netherlands?

Although the Dutch speak English well, there are only a few official bilingual primary and secondary schools. This is called Tweetalig Onderwijs’  AKA TTO. Here your child will get awarded with proficiency certificates, such as CPE diploma, CAE and English A2. Children are taught in English around half of the time and the rest is in Dutch. For this to happen though, the child already needs to have great proficiency in both languages. 

Oh, and on a side note, if you’re interested in the inspection of schools in the Netherlands. It’s the Inspectorate of Education in the Netherlands that’s responsible for that.

Pros of international schools in the Netherlands

  • Your child will be taught in an international learning environment — this is always good as we’re living in a globalised world.
  • Lots of international teachers teach at international schools — this also enhances their international learning environment and also means that the teachers will understand any of your child’s concerns and even yours.
  • Your child gets taught an international curriculum and one that suits their circumstances – it will enhance their employment, especially when they are working abroad.
  • The child will get a multilingual education and it’s the perfect opportunity to learn not only your native language well, but the Dutch language and other languages at the same time.
  • Your child will get to engage with people from all different backgrounds, cultures, religion and will make friends with a variety of different people — also very valuable in this day and age.

Cons of international schools in the Netherlands

  • They can be very expensive and so you need to ensure that you have the finances to meet that (however, sometimes companies will pay this for you, if you’re working somewhere great).
  • Some people argue that it is a negative thing that your children will not meet ordinary Dutch children (and that therefore their integration will be limited).
  • You may have to travel further to go to an international school.
  • There are less international schools to choose from than regular Dutch schools.

Where are the international schools in the Netherlands?

Brace yourselves, there is a long list here, so you’ve got A LOT of research to do.

International schools in Holland:

The European School

Molenweidtje 5
1862 BC Bergen NH
+31725890109

International Primary School Almere

Roland Holststraat 58
1321 RX Almere
+31365367240

International School Almere

Heliumweg 61
1362 JA Almere – Poort
+31367600750

Arnhem international school

Rivers International School Arnhem

Parnassusstraat 20
6846 RB Arnhem
+31263202840

HSV International Primary Schools

Nassaulaan 26
2514 JT Den Haag
+31703184950

Koningin Sophielaan 24a
2595 TG Den Haag
+31703243453

Van Nijenrodestraat 16
2597 RM Den Haag
+31703281441

Lighthouse Special Education (Primary)

Curriculum: Individual SEN-programme taught in English
Amalia van Solmstraat 155
2595 TA Den Haag
+31703355698

The International School of The Hague

Wijndaelerduin 1
2554 BX Den Haag
+31703281450

The European School of The Hague

Houtrustweg 2
2566 HA Den Haag
+31707001600

The American School of The Hague

Rijksstraatweg 200
2241 BX Wassenaar
+31705121060

The British School in the Netherlands

Vlaskamp 19
2592 AA Den Haag

Diamanthorst 16
2592 GH Den Haag

Vrouw Avenweg 640
2493 WZ Den Haag-Leidschenveen

Jan van Hooflaan 3
+31715602222

Elckerlyc International School

Klimopzoom 41
2353 RE Leiderdorp
+31715896861

International Secondary Dept. at Het Rijnlands Lyceum

Apollolaan 1
2341 BA Oegstgeest
+31715193555

De Blijberg – International Primary Department

Graaf Florisstraat 56
3021 CJ Rotterdam
+31104482266

Rotterdam International Secondary School at Wolfert van Borselen

Bentincklaan 294
3039 KK Rotterdam
+31108907744

Nord Anglia International School Rotterdam

Verhulstlaan 21
3055 WJ Rotterdam
+31104225351

The Japanese School of Rotterdam

Verhulstlaan 19
3055 WJ Rotterdam
+31104221211

Looking for an international school near Amsterdam?

International schools in Amsterdam

Amity International School

Amsterdamseweg 204
1182 HL Amsterdam
+31203454481

Amsterdam International Community School

Prinses Irenestraat 59-61
1077 WV Amsterdam
+31205771240

British School of Amsterdam

Nursery & Infant School
Anthonie van Dijckstraat 1
1077 ME Amsterdam
+31206797840

Lower Junior School
Jan van Eijckstraat 21
1077 LG Amsterdam
+31206793060

Upper School
Fred. Roeskestraat 94A
1076 ED Amsterdam
+31206790183

Florencius International Primary School

De Savornin Lohmanlaan 2
1181 XM Amstelveen
+31206408118

International School of Amsterdam

Sportlaan 45
1185 TB Amstelveen
+31203471111

Annexe du Lycée Français Vincent van Gogh

Rustenburgerstraat 246
1073 GK Amsterdam
+31206446507

The Japanese School of Amsterdam

Karel Klinkenbergstraat 137
1061 AL Amsterdam
+31206118136

Other international schools in the Netherlands

International School Breda

Mozartlaan 47
4837 EH Breda
+31765607870

International School in Hoofddorp

Optimist International School
Waddenweg 87
2134 XL Hoofddorp
+31 23 303 5924

International school in Brunssum

Afnorth International School

Ferdinand Bolstraat 1
6445 EE Brunssum
+31455278221

International school in Delft

ISDelft (primary)

Jaffalaan 9
2628 BX Delft
+31152850038

International school in Eerde

International School Eerde (Boarding)

Kasteellaan 1
7731 PJ Ommen
+31529451452

International School Eindhoven

Oirschotsedijk 14B
5651 GC Eindhoven
+31402519437

International School Twente

IST Primary Dept. at Prinseschool
Daalweg 32
7541 AN Enschede
+31650520750

IST Secondary Dept. at the Stedelijk
Tiemeister 20
7541 WG Enschede
+3153482 1100

International School Groningen

Primary Dept. at Groningse Schoolvereniging
Sweelincklaan 4
9722 JV Groningen
+31505270818

Secondary Dept. at IS Groningen
P.O. Box 6105
9702 HC Groningen

Rijksstraatweg 24
9752 AE Haren
+31505340084

International School Haarlem

Schreveliusstraat 1
2014 XR Haarlem
+31615513927

Deutsche Internationale Schule (German School)

Van Bleiswijkstraat 125
2582 LB Den Haag
+31703549454

Le Lycée Français Vincent van Gogh

Scheveningseweg 237
2584 AA Den Haag
+31(0)703066930

The Indonesian Embassy School in the Netherlands

Rijksstraatweg 679
2245 CB Wassenaar
+31705178875

International Primary School Hilversum

Rembrandtlaan 30
1213 BH Hilversum

Frans Halslaan 57A
1213 BK Hilversum

Minckelersstraat 36
1221 KH Hilversum

+31356216053

International School Hilversum

Alberdingk Thijm (Secondary Dept.*)
Emmastraat 56
1213 AL Hilversum
+31356729931

United World College Maastricht

Discusworp 65
6225 XP Maastricht NL
+3143241041

International School Utrecht

+31308700400

Primary Department
Van Bijnkershoeklaan 8
3527 XL Utrecht

Secondary Department
Grebbeberglaan 25
3527 VX Utrecht


Overall, sending to your child to any school, whether that be a normal public Dutch school, an international school or a private school, is not a quick decision. Make sure you research extensively, go and see the schools for yourself and try to work out what will be best suited not only for your child, but for your family. Good luck on your search. 😉 (urgh, adulting).

What do you think about international schools in the Netherlands? Have you sent your child to one? Let us know your experience in the comments!

Editor’s Note: This article was originally published in January 2019, and was updated for your reading pleasure in November 2020. 

Feature image: Free-Photos/Pixabay

4 COMMENTS

  1. i wish to know if there is a possibility of admission for 10 year aged school boy from india if so the details may possibly be detailed

  2. Please be advised that the American International School of Rotterdam had a name change early 2019 and is now known as ‘Nord Anglia International School Rotterdam’. Could the name of the school be updated in this article please? Many thanks.

  3. Hi Emma,
    I noticed that Optimist International School wasn’t included in the article. It would be great if you could add this great school as well to your article for people to read. Optimist International School is a public primary school which started two years ago and is only 15 min from Schiphol and Haarlem, and 20 min from Amsterdam. It has great 5 star reviews and is also included in many other websites/articles about international schools. Thanks v much for your time.

  4. did you find a suitable school for your kid? i am also looking for school for a 10 yrs old boy near by Amersfoort or Hilversum.

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