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Best schools on the Costa del Sol

A snapshot overview of schools on the Costa del Sol that are considered (although not necessarily chosen) by English-speaking expat parents.

If there is no ribbon, pending or otherwise, it means we are aware of the school but have elected not to review it at this time. This could be for a number of reasons, but we continually update information and add or remove reviews as deemed appropriate.

Schools selected for full GSGI review are noted with   next to their names. "Pending" means that we are planning to review that school.

By full GSGI review, we mean the school write-ups that are completely selected, researched, visited and written by our own editors. Our final write-ups 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 descend on the school for an exhaustive visit.


Schools on the Costa del Sol reviewed by The Good Schools Guide International

Aloha College  (pending)

IPC/ Adapted National Curriculum for England/ IGCSE/ A-Level/ IB Diploma; ages 3-18; co-ed; day; independent; private non-profit; 840 students

Founded in 1982 in a purpose-built building in Marbella to provide a British-based education but also one of the first IB schools in Spain. Now on a much larger eco campus and teaching a Spanish curriculum leading to Spanish qualifications as well as the British pathway. 70 per cent of students are expats with the remainder local. Very respectable IB exam results, consistently above the global average.

Sotogrande International School 

PYP/ MYP/ IB Diploma; ages 3-18; co-ed; day and boarding; independent; privately owned; 980 students

Purpose-built  campus offering amazing sporting opportunities through an Elite Sport programme, in particular golf and tennis but luckily the arts are also well catered for. Academics not left behind as several graduates scored over 40 points for the IB Diploma recently and the average is well above the global figure.. Also an Apple Distinguished school and accredited by the Council of International Schools (CIS) and the New England Association of Schools and Colleges (NEASC).

Click here to read our full review of Sotogrande International School


These schools have been brought to our attention, but until we have more reports from parents, we are unable to consider reviewing them.


Benalmadena International College

National Curriculum for England/ IGCSEs/ A-Level/ BTEC; ages 3-18; co-ed; day; independent; privately owned; 170 students

Founded by the present owner in 1997 in Nueva Torrequebrada, between Benalmadena Costa and Fuengirola. In the process of building a new Sports Complex, including a 25m swimming pool. Very respectable exam results at IGCSE and at A-Level with graduates achieving places at leading British universities.

British School of Malaga (formerly St George's)

Adapted National Curriculum for England/ IGCSE/ A-Level/ Spanish curriculum/ Spanish Bach; ages 3-18; co-ed; day; independent; privately owned; 670 students

Part of the International Schools Partnership (ISP), currently operating 39 schools in 9 countries, since 2007. An international school following the British curriculum but also preparing students for Spanish exams and entrance to Spanish universities. Very sound exam results recently with over 50 per cent scoring A*-B at IGCSE and students at A Level performing equally well.

Laude San Pedro International College (formerly King’s College Marbella)

IPC/ Adapted National Curriculum for England/ GCSE/ A-Level/ ESO/ Spanish Bach; ages 3-18; co-ed; day; independent; privately owned; 840 students

Founded in 2004 as a member of the International Schools Partnership (ISP), currently operating 39 schools in 9 countries. 18 A-Levels on offer as well as the Spanish Bachillerato. An accelerated two way (English to Spanish and Spanish to English) programme for new students who are either local or from some 50 odd other nationalities.

Mayfair Academy

Cambridge Primary International Curriculum/ IGCSE/ A-Level; ages 4-18; co-ed; day; independent; privately owned; 200 students

Small ‘boutique’ school located in Estepona since 1997 and are now constructing a brand-new 4 million euro campus at Atalaya Park, on the eastern edge of the city, to create room for expansion. Delivering the Cambridge curriculum throughout the school to children from over 25 nationalities.

Nova School Sunland International

Adapted National Curriculum for England/ IGCSE/ A-Level/ Spanish Bach; ages 3-18; co-ed; day; independent; privately owned; 500 students

Founded in 2001 on a  pretty, rural campus near Cartama to the north-west of Malaga. Part of the Novaschool educational group who run six nurseries and two schools in various parts of Spain but this is their only bilingual school. Classes taught in English but Spanish language and culture on the curriculum throughout. Pupils mainly British.

Queen's British Grammar School

School developed curriculum/ IGCSE; ages 3-16; co-ed; day; independent; privately owned 

Brand-new school, opened in 2016 in Estepona. Teaching a British based curriculum and hoping to expand into offering A-Levels. So far, good parental feedback but needs more time before we can review it.

St Anthony's College

School developed curriculum/ IGCSE/ A-Level/ Spanish curriculum/ Spanish Bach; ages 3-18; co-ed; day; independent; privately owned; 250 students

The oldest British school on the Costa del Sol, opened in 1968 by an English music teacher for six students. Now grown 40 fold and  on a campus between Fuengirola and Mijas. Graduates pass their A-Levels successfully with 30 per cent A*-A in the last published results, unfortunately no figures made available by the school since 2015.

Sunny View School

Adapted National Curriculum for England/ Spanish curriculum/ IGCSE/ A-Level; ages 2-18; co-ed; day and boarding; independent; privately owned; 650 students

Founded in 1971 on a campus in the hills above Torremolinos. Now on two sites, primary and secondary on the main site with early years’ classes (opened 2017) close by. The pupils are largely Spanish (72 per cent) with about six per cent British and the remainder from over 30 nationalities.

Swans International School 

Adapted curriculum/ IGCSE/ IB Diploma; ages 3-18; co-ed; day; independent; privately owned; 800students

Grown dramatically since it opened as small primary school in 1971 in the El Capricio quarter of central Marbella. Today’s primary school remains on this site with the secondary school housed in a purpose-built campus in Sierra Blanca. New curriculum since 2015, influenced by British and Singapore versions,  Academically very sound with 41 per cent A*-A at IGCSE in 2018 and 30 per cent of IB students scoring 36 points and above.

The British College Benalmadena

Adapted National Curriculum for England/ Spanish curriculum/ IGCSE/ A-Level/ Spanish Bach; ages 5-18; co-ed; day; independent; privately owned; 600 students

An international, bilingual school in an urbanisation called ‘Torremuelle’ between Torremolinos and Fuengirola. Intensive English courses for Spanish students. Recently, over 50per cent of students gained A*-B at IGCSE and 15 per cent of students sitting A-Level exams, scored A*-B in at least four subjects.

The English International College

National Curriculum for England/ IGCSE/ GCSE/A-Level; ages 3-18; co-ed; day; independent; privately owned; 500 students

Founded in 1982 and located on the eastern side of Marbella. Impressive A-Level results with up to  per cent gaining A*-B, recently. An international school delivering a British education to students from over 30 nationalities but with English the first language for 80 per cent of families. Also known for sporting achievements, particularly golf.

The International School Estepona (Primary School)

Montessori/ National Curriculum for England; ages 2-12; co-ed; day; independent; privately owned; 100students

Bilingual (English/Spanish) nursery and primary school in Benavista, Estepona, founded in 2004. The Montessori approach is aimed at allowing students to enter into British secondary schools either in the UK or abroad.

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