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Best 5 International Schools in Chicago

International Education in Chicago

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America as a whole, but Chicago in particular, has expats at its heart. People from all corners of the world have made the Windy City their home for centuries past. You’ll find a diverse range of cultures, ways of life, cuisines and so much more in this vibrant metropolis. And with such a long history of immigration, it’s no surprise that there are plenty of international schools here too.

Chicago doesn’t have the same choice of international schools as some other US cities such as New York or San Francisco. But since it also doesn’t have the expat magnets of Silicon Valley or the UN headquarters, supply and demand for school places is a little more balanced. Competition is still high and waiting lists are still common however, so the usual advice to apply early is still applicable.

If you were hoping international school fees may be more budget-friendly in Chicago than in other US cities, get ready to be disappointed. Yearly fees here are slightly cheaper than in San Francisco. This price gap widens when compared with New York. But the United States is still one of the most expensive countries in the world for international schooling so overall, there aren’t many savings to be made.

Chicago’s international schools can be found in various districts, stretching northwards from South Loop. These include Lincoln Park, Uptown, and Evanston, which is just outside the city in Cook County. All are affluent areas with lots of residential neigbourhoods. Some schools offer a school bus, but if you don’t want to worry about long commutes then consider accommodation options near one these districts.

Several international schools in Chicago follow a Christian or Catholic ethos. It’s relatively common for private schools in the US to do this. ‘Following a Christian ethos’ could mean saying a prayer to start the day, teaching religion classes or having religious ceremonies. However, the school is usually willing to discuss alternatives if you don’t want your child to participate in this aspect of school life.

The International Baccalaureate is the most common curriculum in Chicago’s international schools. You can also find a variety of European curricula such as French, German and British. The language of instruction will match the curriculum (the IB is taught through English), but additional language classes are commonly offered. These additional languages will usually include a selection of European languages and possibly Mandarin.

Since the US is a predominantly English-speaking country, native English-speaking teachers are common in every international school in Chicago. It’s likely that the majority of the student body will also have English as a first language, too.

International schools in Chicago come with all of the impressive features you’d expect from international schools elsewhere. Technology is used extensively in the classroom, extracurricular programs are provided, class sizes are small and teaching standards are excellent.

Below, we have compiled our top 5 international schools in Chicago. However, there are another 5 schools to choose from in the city. You can find the best international school for your child by personalising your results. Just fill in your search criteria, and we will calculate a personal score for every international school in Chicago based on your requirements.

Best 5 International Schools in Chicago

Out of a total of 10 International Schools in Chicago.

Based on the aggregated preferences of our users in the last 30 days.

St. Matthias School

St. Matthias School is a Catholic, IB World school that is committed to welcoming everyone and to creating a love of lifelong learning in its students. SMS is dedicated to developing faith centered, service oriented, compassionate global citizens through a program of differentiated, interdisciplinary, and rigorous inquiry.
Curriculum
IB, Catholic
Ages
3 to 14
Yearly fees - 2021/2022
from: $6,800
to: $8,300
Your score

Beacon Academy Chicago

Beacon Academy brings together independent school best practices and challenging curriculum with the independence, freedom, and student-centered methods of Montessori. It is also an International Baccalaureate school.
Curriculum
IB, Montessori
Ages
14 to 18
This school does not make their fees public.
Your score

French American School of Chicago

EFAC, the French-American School of Chicago offers the French Ministry of National Education’s scholastic program, integrated within the Chicago Public Schools (CPS) system. The school covers all levels from Kindergarten to 12th grade (with certification through the French level CM2 and the opportunity to take the French section of the French Baccalauréat). EFAC is located in the dynamic and family-oriented Lincoln Park neighborhood.
Curriculum
American, French
Languages of instruction
English, French
Ages
5 to 18
Yearly fees - 2020/2021
from: $4,214
to: $5,565
Your score

Daystar Academy

Daystar Academing is offering a faith-based, culturally-engaged, globally-minded education to Chicago’s students.
Daystar is an authorized International Baccalaureate School.
Curriculum
IB, Christian
Ages
3 to 16
Yearly fees - 2020/2021
from: $13,500
to: $14,600
Your score

DePaul College Prep

DePaul College Prep is a coeducational college preparatory Catholic high school offering Chicago’s college-bound students a 21st century approach to education and a close-knit school family that values each student as a person of promise and potential.
Curriculum
IB, Catholic
Ages
14 to 18
Yearly fees - 2021/2022
from: $14,500
to: $14,500
Your score

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