International Schools in Iraq

Diploma and graduate hat - Fotolia

You will find below a list of the most popular international and bilingual schools for expats in Iraq with fee information. The list includes nursery schools, primary and secondary (high) schools for you to find the right school to prepare for the International Baccalaureate and other accreditation in Iraq. Schools follow the American or British curriculums with English speaking programs while others are regulated under the French, German, or Turkish education system.

Education in Iraq

Before 1990, the educational system in Iraq was one of the best in the Middle East. Conflicts, wars, and economic sanctions since that time have had a seriously negative effect. Northern Iraq has not suffered as much due to rehabilitation and reconstruction programs organized through UN agencies, but major problems such as a lack of resources, security threats, uneven immigration causing poor student to teacher ratios, and corruption still exist here. Illiteracy is a major obstacle with almost 22% of the adult population in Iraq never attending school.

Education in Iraq is administered by the Ministry of Education and is free from primary to higher education. Curriculum is generally Western-based, but also includes religious studies and the language of instruction is Arabic. There are 6 years of compulsory primary education, followed by an examination to be admitted to secondary school. Secondary schools are a three-year program with a two-year course in preparation for entrance to college. To enter higher education, a national examination must be passed.

International Schools

International schools can be the perfect solution for an expat student (multinational corporation executives, children of diplomats, NGO staff) in Iraq. There may be some local population, but the schools are usually geared for an international student body. Schools follow a curriculum model from the US, UK, or France. Primary instruction may be any language (and multiple languages are usually taught), but it is usually in English or French. Schools provide similar standards of schooling around the globe, providing for an easy transition between schools whether they are in France or Vietnam. Schools also provide internationally accepted accreditation such as the international baccalaureate.

Admission and enrollment procedures vary from school to school. Space is often limited and preference may be given to students based on nationality. Tuition tends to be expensive based on local standards, but offers high standards of learning, boast smaller class sizes, first-rate facilities, and extracurricular. Boarding facilities are available at some schools, but most only provide day classes.

Accreditation & Membership

  • The Council of International Schools (CoIS) is a non-profit association of international schools and post-secondary institutions which provides educational accreditation, teacher and leadership recruitment services, links to higher education, governance assistance and help with founding new schools.


International School of Choueifat - Erbil (ISC-ERBIL)
Address: Massif Road, Khanzad Area
Erbil, Kurdistan, Iraq
Tel: (964-750) 813 9850-6
Tuition Rates: Inquire at school

One of the schools in the SABIS network, ISC-ERBIL welcomes students in KG1 through Grade 11. It features a state-of-the-art campus and internationally oriented curriculum.

British International Schools in Kurdistan - Hawler
Address: Villas 30B-33B Italian City, 100 Meter Road
Erbil, Kurdistan, Iraq
Tel: 964 770 151 4492 or 964 750 133 9950
Tuition Rates: $2,160 - 3,100 per year

Reception through Year 9 follows the National Curriculum of England, with suitable adaptations to take into account our location in Iraqi Kurdistan. The school is accredited by Cambridge International Examinations to use their examinations from year 3 to 19 including the internationally recognized iGSCE, A/S and A levels. Uniforms are required.

French School in Erbil

MLF Danielle Mitterrand
Address: Quarter Gulan 1
Erbil, Kurdistan, Iraq
Tel: 0750 78080 85
Tuition Rates: Inquire at school

A French language school with curriculum approved by the L'Agence pour l'enseignement du français à l'étranger (AEFE).

German School in Erbil

Deutsche Schule Erbil
Address: 100 Strasse, nahe Emergency Hospital Erbil West
Erbil, Kurdistan Region/Irak
Tel: 00964 / (0)770 301 6560 or 00964 / (0)750 335 9848
Tuition Rates: Inquire at school

German language pre-school, primary, and secondary school that follows German approved curriculum.

Turkish School in Erbil

Ihsan Dogramaci Bilkent Erbil College (IDBEC)
Address: Mosul Road / P.O. Box No. 43/0383
Erbil, Torex Village, Iraq
Tel: 066 2644917 and 0662644918
Tuition Rates: Inquire at school

A multilingual school teaching in English, Turkish and Kurdish with more languages to be added in a later phase. Current grades include Kindergarten to Grade 3. The school is a PYP candidate school.


Classical School of the Medes (CSM)
Address: Sulaimaniya, Iraq
Tel: 964 (0) 66 253 5322
Tuition Rates: Inquire at school

A private, English-based network of schools following American curriculum with American staff. Curriculum is based on Servant Group International, a US-based non-profit Christian organization. Subjects include English Language, Kurdish Language, Arabic Language (currently for students of grade 4 and above), Mathematics, Science, and Humanities. Most students are from Kurdish Muslim families, with the remainder from Orthodox, Evangelical Christian, and other backgrounds.