International Schools in Rwanda

You will find below a list of the most popular international and bilingual schools for expats in Rwanda 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 Rwanda. Some schools may follow the American or British curriculums with English speaking programs while others are regulated under the American or French language and system.

Education in Rwanda

Education system in Rwanda operates on a 6-3-3-4 system:

  • Elementary or Primary School – 6 years
  • Junior Secondary School (Ordinary level) – 3 years
  • Senior Secondary School (Advanced level) – 3 years
  • University Bachelor's degree – 4 years

In Rwanda, "elementary or primary education" is divided into two stages of three years each: Primary one to three (P1 to P3) and Primary four to six (P4 to P6). The "ordinary level" includes grades from seven to nine (S1 to S3). Its admission is based on the Primary Leaving Examination, a test taken after "primary school" is fully completed. Grade averages determine whether students are admitted to their school of choice.

This system is about to change and "random placement" will be installed, only taking into consideration the closeness to the school from home.

The current examination includes English, Kinyarwanda, mathematics, physics, chemistry, biology, information technology, history, geography, entrepreneurship, French, Kiswahili, and physical education, as well as one elective subject (artistic subjects, home science, or agriculture).

Grade nine (last year in Junior school) also concludes an external ordinary level (O Level) examination. 

Senior secondary education comprises grades 10 to 12 (S4 to S6). Admission requires the O Level examinations. There are three separate streams in the general academic track: sciences, humanities, and languages. 

Generallly, there are two official languages of instruction throughout the Rwandan educational system: Kinyarwanda in primary school (P1-P3) and English from P4 through University. French and Swahili are taught as an elective or a supplemental subject in public primary and secondary schools. Some private primary and high schools have both Francophone and Anglophone systems which use French or English, respectively, as languages of instruction at any and all grade levels.

To learn more about the latest changes in the use of languages in Rwanda's schools, we invite you to ride the following article: For the third time in 11 years, Rwanda changed the language used in primary schools

International Schools

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

Admission and enrolment 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 CoIS (Council of International Schools) 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.
  • European Council of International Schools (ECIS) is a collaborative network promoting the ideals and best practice of international education, complemented by grants and awards.
  • Council of British International Schools (COBIS) is a responsive organisation that serves, supports and represents its member schools.
  • New England Association of Schools & Colleges (NEASC) is a regional accrediting association which establishes standards for all levels of education, from pre-K to doctoral.
  • Agency for French Education Abroad (Agence pour l'enseignement français à l'étranger, AEFE) is a national public agency under the administration of the French government that assures the quality of schools teaching the French national curriculum outside France.
  • National Association of Independent Schools (NAIS) represents over 1100 independent schools and associations in the United States and abroad.

International schools in Kigali

Green Hills Academy (GHA)
Address: Kigali KG 278 St,
Nyarutarama Kigali
Tel: +250 735832348
Tuition Rates: $3380 to $6620. Depending of the educational level and student nationality [school year 2021/22]

Green Hills Academy is a bilingual school with both Rwanda National Program and Cambridge Program. It is at the top of the list because up to middle school it provides a bilingual program (both french and English). Also, the school is an IB school that will make the transfer to a different country easier for students.

Kigali International Community School (KICS)
Address: KG 408 Street, Caisse Sociale Estates
BP 6558, Gacuriro, Kigali
Tel: +250 788 125 018
Tuition Rates: Inquire at school

KICS is a Christian school in Kigali that follows the American Curriculum. It is also the first accredited American school in Kigali and is most probably a great choice if you are moving from the US.

International School of Kigali (ISKR)
Address: KG 270 Street, Nyarutarama
Kigali, RwandaK
Tel: +250 786 725 369
Tuition Rates: Between $19,800 to $23,625 [school year 2021/22]

ISKR is also a Christian school which receives students from nursery to grade 12. It follows the American Curriculum.

Well Spring Academy
Address: KG 307 St.,
Kibagabaga, Kigali, Rwanda
Tel: +250 786 162 427
Tuition Rates: Inquire to school

Well Spring Academy is Nursery, Primary and Secondary school located in Kigali. It exclusively teaches in the Cambridge curriculum.

International Montessori School of Rwanda
Address: ​KN 46 Street #4,
Kiyovu, Kigali, Rwanda
Tel: +250 722 479 137 | +250 726 479 136
Tuition Rates: Between $7450 and $16,250 [school year 2021/22]

International Montessori School of Rwanda is the only Montessori school in the country and it is proudly the first international school in the world  to achieve GBAC STAR™ facility accreditation from the Global Biorisk Advisory Council (GBAC) to prevent and respond to outbreaks. The Earth School is also an accredited member of the International Schools Association (ISA). Based in Geneva, Switzerland, ISA is the most senior organization in the world of international education and the first educational non-governmental organization to be granted consultative status at UNESCO.

French schools in Kigali

Ecole Francophone Antoine de Saint-Exupéry
Address: KN 41, BP 1335,
Kigali, Rwanda
Tel: +250 789 576 468
Tuition Rates: Between $1720 to $3550 [school year 2021/22]

EFASE is in Kigali, the only local legal school that prepares French, nationals and other countries students to obtain the Diplôme National du Brevet (DNB) "O" Level and the Baccalaureat "A" Level. It provides the teaching programs of the French National Education and in accordance with its values ​​and requirements, promotes exchange and broadening to others.

L'école Les Petits Câlins
Address: KG 550 Street quartier TV1, Archives,
Kigali, Rwanda
Tel: +250 787 395 364
Tuition Rates: $450 per term aprox. [school year 2021/22]

The school, initially kindergarten, has grown over the years at the request of many parents and now includes a primary section going up to the 6th year.
Approved by the Rwandan Education Board (REB), education is delivered in French in all sections. English is introduced from the third kindergarten and Kinyarwanda from the first primary. L'école Les Petits Câlins offers quality French-speaking education based on the program of the French community of Belgium (Federation Wallonia-Brussels).