International Education in New York City
With the United Nations headquarters in its centre and a reputation as one of the most diverse cities in the world, New York has a choice of international schools, but not as many as its size may make you expect.
There are a couple of reasons for this. As a predominantly English-speaking city, there is no language barrier for most expats in New York. In many other countries parents would have no choice but to send their child to an international school, as all other schools would teach through the country’s native language.
In addition to this, New York has plenty of well known and very well regarded private schools. These schools offer the same high standards of education and excellent facilities as international schools, and make for a worthy alternative in many parent’s eyes.
The deciding factor in choosing an international school in New York rather than a private school is often the curriculum. The majority of NYC’s international schools teach the International Baccalaureate, which is taught across the globe. Private schools teach the American curriculum, which is also popular around the world, but not nearly as widespread.
For expat families who intend to move to another city in a couple of years, consistency in their child’s education is key. The International Baccalaureate means students can pick up exactly where they left off without missing anything, anywhere in the world.
Either way both international and private schools in New York are thought of as the ‘elite’. Students who come through either often go on to attend Ivy League universities in the United States or their equivalents in other countries. Whichever school you end up choosing, you can be sure that the quality of education, teachers, facilities, extra curricular activities and everything else will be second to none.
Because of this however, waiting lists are common and applications can have multiple stages. This is especially true of the most well known schools. Competition for places can be intense and parents are usually advised to apply at least a year in advance. On the plus side, most of them have rolling admissions, so your child can join at any time in the schools year.
Be prepared for an initial tour of the school campus, followed by an interview with the principal or senior admissions staff. After that, don’t be surprised if the school requires your child to take an aptitude test. Some schools even ask for a letter of recommendation on top of all of the above! Every school is different however, and some have a less stringent admissions process than others.
Below, we have compiled our top 10 international schools in New York City. However, there are another 10 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 New York City based on your requirements.