Nothing is more important than your kids’ education.

Fortunately, any young person studying in Spain will enjoy high-quality schooling.

But also?

The chance to experience a beautiful country rich in history and culture

The locations, extracurriculars, total costs, languages, and the school’s priorities—each detail is significant.

To make things easy, we researched the best international schools in Spain for you! 

What else makes living in Barcelona or Madrid with school-age children easy? Staying in a fully furnished Blueground apartment.  

Whether you’re working in Spain remotely or going into an office, our turnkey homes let you live comfortably and work productively.  

Blueground offers fully-furnished, equipped and serviced apartments in some of the world's most sought after cities.

Spanish Education System

Studying abroad in Spain is well structured and highly rewarding.

First off, the Spanish education system is compulsory for kids ages 3 to 16

After that, students can choose to continue in secondary school for two years (called Bachillerato) or go to vocational school.

The system is split into preschool (ages 3 to 6), elementary school (ages 6 to 12), and middle school and high school (ages 12 to 16). 

Why it’s worth studying in Spain

Many of the best international schools in Spain provide unmatched academic and athletic opportunities

Of course, there’s even more to love.

For instance, the culture and landscape (not to mention amazing cuisine) make Spain a must-visit destination. 

Perhaps the ideal time to experience it is during your formative years.

After all, the world-class schools make studying in Spain both easy and life-changing. 

Group of international students in Spain

Types of international schools in Spain

There are a wide variety of international schools in Spain. Differences can include the languages spoken, class sizes, curriculum, and so much more. 

American and British schools are among the best options.

That’s due to their proven educational programs, a large pool of educators, well-placed locations, and quality facilities. 

Best American international schools & Advanced Placement (AP)

We’ve put together this list of some of the best American international schools in Spain. 

Every selection has only the finest programs that will help kids of all ages excel

So you can’t go wrong with the school you choose!

School children in class

1. American School of Barcelona

A list of international schools in Barcelona wouldn’t be complete without ASB. This school helps students gain critical thinking skills as well as self-confidence. 

Young learners also enjoy fun after-school activities and programs. This includes sports programs, performing arts, and more.

The school is accredited by the International Baccalaureate Organization (IBO), so students have a challenging-yet-rewarding time. 

2. Aquinas American School

Located in Madrid, the Aquinas American School follows a US school curriculum. This is complemented by Spanish language learning. 

It’s a Catholic, college-preparatory, co-ed school, with a student body made up of 41 different nationalities. 

Both academics and athletics are valued here.

Hence, in addition to the International Baccalaureate Diploma program, students can participate in a wide variety of sports. 

Finally, don’t forget to further your education in Madrid by visiting some of the city’s best museums

Students doing school work

3. American School of Madrid

One of the best international schools in Madrid, ASM has offered an American education and fluency in Spanish for over 60 years

It holds multiple accreditations, including the International Baccalaureate Organization.

Today, over 1,000 students from all over the world attend as top-notch educators help these young learners achieve their full potential. 

School life also involves a range of opportunities. These include soccer, volleyball, basketball, gymnastics, cheer, and more. 

Don’t miss this expat guide to Madrid as well!

4. American School of Valencia

Overall, at the spacious campus of the American School of Valencia, students from 2 to 18 experience a global education for the 21st century. 

The international school’s mission is to “prepare globally-conscious, life-long learners in an innovative, collaborative, and caring environment.”

So this multilingual school features the International Baccalaureate Diploma program.

Plus, plenty of extracurricular activities and skilled educators.

5. Benjamin Franklin International School

With nearly 700 students from 50 nationalities, students at the Benjamin Franklin Internation School follow the American curriculum

These young learners can earn the American High School Diploma, International Baccalaureate Diploma, and the Spanish Bachillerato Certificate. 

After school, there’s a lot to do, too.

Activities include: sports, music, robotics, chess, cheer, and more

Best British international schools in Spain

Children raising hands in international school

6. European International School of Barcelona

This is undoubtedly one of the best international schools in Europe.

That’s because EISB values both the personal and academic goals of its students.

High school students follow the American curriculum. They can also take part in the National Baccalaureate program to better prepare for university

Plus, there’s a blended learning program available. In this modern educational style, students experience both online school as well as live instruction from teachers in a traditional setting.

7. King’s College, The British School of Madrid (Soto de Viñuelas)

Located on a 12 acre site in the countryside, King’s College, The British School of Madrid is a top-rated institution.

Moreover, it has highly qualified teachers and can accommodate up to 1,600 students. The school proudly offers A Levels and an International Baccalaureate Diploma program. These programs prepare students to continue their education. 

Young learners gain first-hand experiences while inspired to think creatively and work hard.  

Each classroom is a modern learning environment with computers, interactive whiteboards, and other essentials.

Also, physical education is emphasized, with numerous opportunities to play sports. 

Additionally, there’s a lot to see and do in Madrid. Check out our ideas for your first weekend there.

Female student with book

8. Kensington School

Established in 1966, Kensington School has always sought to provide a British education for the international community in Barcelona. It’s a family-run school that fosters a happy, purposeful and dynamic community.

The curriculum is tailored to each student’s individual needs. A 1:9 teacher to student ratio helps develop every learner. 

Kensington School presents many opportunities for students to grow, learn, and experience new perspectives

Outside of school hours, there’s lots to do as well. Extracurricular activities range from pilates and drama to volleyball and fencing. 

9. Thames British School – Madrid

Part of the NABSS, the prestigious association of British Schools in Spain, Thames British School in Madrid is an excellent place for learners of all ages. 

Classes are taught in English and follow the British curriculum from the Early Years Foundation Stage to the Cambridge International AS/A Levels.

All in all, the school creates an inclusive culture of learning.

Indeed, children are challenged in their thinking. This is done to help them become lifelong learners and achieve their full potential. 

Then there’s the actual building itself. This cutting-edge, 6,200 square-meter facility has helped solidify the Thames British School as one of the best international schools in Madrid. 

10. Cambridge House Community College

Founded in 1986, Cambridge House Community College claims a number of firsts. 

It was the first school in Spain to obtain both the BSO distinction (British School Overseas) and NABBS accreditation (National Association of British Schools in Spain).

In other words, this is a trailblazing institution. It follows the English National Curriculum, while also providing students with bilingual education.

However, it values more than just academics. There are lots of extracurricular activities, summer camps, language immersion opportunities abroad, and formative excursions. 

Students celebrating best international school

So how to choose an international school in Spain

1. Location

    • Where in Spain do you want to live? Do you want to be in the heart of a big city or on the outskirts of a smaller one? What will the commute to work, shops, and restaurants be like?
    • These are just a few questions to ask yourself before deciding your final destination.
    • Obviously, finding a balance between your wants and needs is critical to landing in the ideal location.  

2. Education system

    • Supported by national and regional governments, the Spanish education system is decentralized and spans nursery to upper secondary education.
    • Most of the best international schools in Spain follow American or British curriculum with a Spanish hybrid. This delivers the best of all worlds.
    • However, you may need to research further to discover more nuances of these systems.  

3. Primary language of instruction

    • While all the school on this list feature instruction in English, they vary in how multi-lingual skills are prioritized.
    • Is fluency in Spanish a must for your children? What about other languages?
    • The more immersed they are with a language in day-today life, the quicker they’ll learn or improve.  

Young students in Spain international school

4. School reputation

    • Some schools have decades of consistent academic excellence. Others may be newer or place a higher emphasis on certain courses.
    • Dig deep into the history of a school before you make a decision.
    • And remember to think about what kind of path each institution may create for your kids’ futures. 

5. Academic results

    • The past academic achievements of schools give you a good sense of their values and priorities.
    • Yes, some of this is due to the students, but the quality of instructors, teaching style, and many more factors come into play.
    • Remember to take the history and standing of the school into account as well. 

6. Fees

    • Spanish international schools run the financial gamut, from incredibly affordable to rather expensive.
    • Therefore, it’s important to keep your budget in mind. Then determine if the cost for a certain school will be worth what your children will get out of it. 

7. Admission and enrollment procedures

    • From the documents needed to deadlines, enrolling your children in a new school takes a few steps.
    • Moreover, be sure to contact your desired institution as soon as possible to confirm the process and reserve a spot for your kid(s). The earlier, the better.
    • This will give you time in case you need to come up with a backup plan. 

After all, which school should your children attend?

Each student is unique. That’s why our list of the best international schools in Spain features a variety of opportunities.

In conclusion, we hope you find the one that’s best for you and your family!

Blueground offers fully-furnished, equipped and serviced apartments in some of the world's most sought after cities.

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