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best schools in Copenhagen chosen y expats

A snapshot: schools in Copenhagen considered (but not necessarily chosen) by English-speaking expats.

Schools with a full GSGI review are noted with  next to their names. 

 (pending) means that the school is on our list to review.

By full GSGI review, we mean school write-ups that are completely selected, researched, visited and written by our own editors. Our final reviews take the good with the bad, warts and all, but we look for a preponderance of good before we drill down for in-depth details and descend on the school for an exhaustive visit. We are aware of the other schools on this page and we continually add or remove schools, as deemed appropriate.

International schools

Bernadotte School – The Little House

Danish curriculum; ages 6-15; co-ed; day; independent; private non-profit; 100 students

Officially called ‘The Little House’, due to its separate building inside the Bernadotte School, they teach the Danish curriculum in English. When the students leave, they usually go on to a Danish gymnasium (efterskole) or to one of the schools offering the IB Diploma. The school is non-selective and very popular, so there is, almost always, a waiting list for every grade.

Birkerod Gymnasium

Danish curriculum/ IB Diploma; ages 14-18; co-ed; day and boarding; independent; private non-profit; 320 students

Originally established in 1868 as a private boarding school for boys, girls were educated here from the beginning of the 20th century but not allowed to board until 1973. Taken over by the state for a period, it became an independent institution in 2007. The school has been appointed the first Red Cross School in Denmark and has offered the International Baccalaureate Diploma since 1991.

Bjorn’s International School

Danish curriculum/ IGCSE; ages 6-16; co-ed; day; independent; private non-profit; 165 students

Over 50 years old, the school offers a programme taught in English, specifically for expats, who are going to be in Denmark for up to a maximum of four years and then continue their education elsewhere. The English students are integrated, as sport, music, field trips and school camps all take place with the Danish students.

Copenhagen International School (CIS)

PYP/ MYP/ IB Diploma; ages 6-18; co-ed; day; independent; private non-profit; 930 students

Founded in 1963 and deliberately appealing to expats, in particular Americans, who form around 20 per cent of the student population. Very consistent International Baccalaureate Diploma results and students are offered places at leading global universities (mainly UK and US). Accredited by the New England Association of Schools and Colleges.

European School in Copenhagen

European school-developed curriculum/ European Bac; ages 5-18; co-ed; state; 450 students

One of thirteen European schools, this one is jointly authorised by the Danish national government and the European Union. The same curriculum throughout for all students but classes taught in the student’s mother tongue.

Institut Sankt Joseph – Bilingual Department

Danish curriculum/ Cambridge 1, 2/ IGCSE; ages 6-16; day; independent; private non-profit; 555 students

A very long-established private, Catholic school, which opened its doors over 150 years ago. Nowadays, only around 20 per cent of the students are practising Catholics but the school still has a strong humanitarian ethos and actively encourages international cooperation. Conveniently situated for US diplomats as it is directly opposite their embassy.

International School Hellerup

PYP/ MYP/ IB Diploma; ages 6-18; co-ed; day; independent; private non-profit; 550 students

One of two International Baccalaureate all-through schools in Copenhagen. Founded in 2009 in the Osterbro district of Copenhagen, with the senior students returning there as they have reached capacity in Hellerup. Students from around 70 different nationalities, with Denmark, the UK and India being the largest groups.

Lycée Francais de Copenhagen

French curriculum/ Brevet/ French Bac; ages 3-18; day; state; 800 students

Providing a complete French education from ‘maternelle’ to the French Baccalaureate. Part of the network of the Agency for French Education Abroad (AEFE), which currently includes over 500 schools in cities all around the world. Accredited by the French Ministry of Education.

North Zealand International School

International Early Years Curriculum/ International Primary Curriculum/ Cambridge 2/ IGCSE; ages 4-16; co-ed; day; independent; private non-profit; 270 students

Part of the largest private school in Denmark (Nordsjaellands Grundskole og Gymnasium) which is located in the northern outskirts of Copenhagen. This is a separate institution, all classes are taught in English and it is the only school in Denmark offering the IPC.

Rygaards International Secondary School

Adapted National Curriculum for England/ Cambridge 2/ IGCSE; ages 11-16; co-ed; day; independent; private non-profit; 250 students

Founded in 1909 by the Sisters of the Assumption and now a private state-subsidised school  with two divisions. The international school, founded in 1967, is specifically for families who are in Denmark on a temporary basis. Strong Christian ethos throughout the school.

Viking International School

International Primary Curriculum; ages 2-8; co-ed; day; independent; private non-profit

Opened in August 2020, aiming to become a nursery, pre-school and primary teaching an international curriculum in English and Danish.

Waldorf International School Copenhagen (WISC)

Rudolf Steiner; ages 6-11; co-ed; day; independent; private non-profit

The international division (teaching in English) of Byens Steinerskole, opened in 2019.

For more information on the schools above, please go to  each school’s individual entry on The Good Schools Guide International search.


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