Where To Get First-Class K12 Education in Istanbul

Istanbul, with its glorious history and the diversity of people who have lived and are living here, offers countless opportunities in many areas of life. Throughout its history, this distinguished city which has hosted many different groups and cultures for many years has embraced its inhabitants and been a source of curiosity and attraction for foreigners. Today, Istanbul continues to be the largest city in modern Turkey and is an attraction point for expats all around the world for various reasons such as quality health services, employment opportunities, cultural heritage, booming economy and real estate market, and education opportunities.

In this blog, expats and foreigners who want to settle in Istanbul and seek educational opportunities for their children under 18 can get informed about some of the most reputable private and international schools in Istanbul. So, if you’re considering pursuing your life in Istanbul and looking for the best education option for your children, this blog is for you. 

students sitting in the classroom in high quality private school in istanbul

HIGHLIGHTS

  • There are many people who have relocated or want to relocate in Istanbul and this situation creates a big demand for education in Turkey.
  • Since the city is a social and cultural hub, its opportunities are countless in terms of education, just like many other areas in life. 
  • Istanbul is still Turkey’s biggest city. And since the biggest population lives here, Istanbul is the place with the highest number of education options.
  • We have compiled a list of the schooling options in Istanbul for those who are looking for the best education options for their children.

Private and International Schools in Istanbul

There are several advantages to choosing an international or private school. The most prominent of these advantages is that most of these schools apply foreign or international curriculums among which you can choose the option that best suits your children's needs. Independent of which countries’ curriculums these schools adopt, education is usually bilingual, meaning that languages such as German, French, and Italian are practiced as well as English. In addition to these features, subjects like art, music, and sports are given higher importance in private and international schools.

This multicultural and multilingual education environment perfectly aligns with Istanbul's multiculturalism and multilingualism. So, if you want your children to be “world citizens”, Istanbul offers you and your family great options on this matter.

Below you can find our compilation of some of the most prominent and well-established private and international schools in this magnificent city.

The Koç Schools

a father and his daughter going to private school in istanbul

 

Unofficially known as Koç High School, The Koç School is an institution that provides education from kindergarten to the end of high school and was founded in 1988. Like Koç University, one of the country's most successful and well-established higher education institutions, Koç Schools are also under the umbrella of the Vehbi Koç Foundation. Due to their common vision, these schools aim to raise world citizens by instilling global views, especially by emphasizing foreign language acquisition. Also, the multinational and multicultural teaching staff and the use of a bilingual curriculum consisting of Turkish and English contribute to the school's global perspective.

Like most well-established schools, graduates of Koç Schools are known to pursue their academic life in the best universities and seize the best career opportunities. 

The American Robert College

Founded in 1863, The American Robert College is one of the most recognized schools in Istanbul and is known to be one of the oldest private schools in the city. An example of American missionary work, the school is one of the oldest American schools outside the States. Just like Robert College, Boğaziçi University takes its foundation date as 1863 because Robert College was first established in the place where Boğaziçi University is located today and formed the basis of the country's leading higher education institution a hundred-odd years later. Robert College graduates are generally famous for continuing their education in the best higher education institutions in Istanbul and Turkey, such as Boğaziçi University, and climbing the career ladder quickly and successfully.

famous private high school name written on a plate

 

The school is not categorized as an international school but as a private school. Registration is paid, but students are admitted only if they achieved high success in the general university exam administered by the Turkish Ministry of Education. Robert College adopts Turkish and English as the languages of instruction and the students have to choose a second language between German and French.

Huda American School

Suppose you want your children to be educated in an Islamic environment and want to graduate with an American diploma. In that case, Huda American School may be a very suitable option for you. The perspective adopted by the school is to raise successful individuals of the future in an educational environment adorned with Islamic values and where globality is at the forefront.

two girls sitting in a classroom of a private school in istanbul

 

Huda American School adopts a version of the American Curriculum and 12 graders graduate with an American diploma that has worldwide credibility and is recognized by the most prestigious universities. 

Bahçeşehir High School for Science and Technology (FENTEK)

Bahçeşehir FENTEK is one of the 143 schools founded by Bahçeşehir Colleges and its main focus is to educate scientifically advanced students. The school is the pioneer in the project-based implementation of science and technology-oriented education models in Turkey. With its well-equipped laboratories and famous studies in the field of robotics, the school is well-known for its students’ achievements in international contests and science and technology projects. Considering that academic skills such as reading scientific texts are generally only acquired at the university level, it is one of the most outstanding features of the school that it provides students with such academic skills while still in high school.

In addition to receiving instruction in English and Turkish, students are also expected to become proficient in a second foreign language. The progress of students on standardized tests such as the SAT, IELTS, and TOEFL also reveals the success of the school on a global scale. 

FAQs

Are There English Schools In Turkey?

There are some private and international schools in Turkey that adopt English and American curriculum where the language of instruction is English such as the British International School.

At What Age Do You Finish High School In Turkey?

Generally, students finish high school at the age of 18. The age of graduation might go up to 19 in schools providing instruction in a foreign language due to the preparatory year. 

Is Turkey's Education System Good?

According to research by the Bologna Process, Turkey ranks second in the world in terms of access to higher education, with 94.2% of the population enrolled in school.

Is Education Free In Istanbul?

From pre-school to higher education, that is, kindergarten, primary education, and secondary education are compulsory all over Turkey, and education in public schools is free.

Which City Is The Best For Studying In Turkey?

One of Turkey's top cities for students is Istanbul. There are 57 universities in Istanbul, 13 of which are public. Plus, in Istanbul, there are a lot of foreign students as well.

What age do children start school in Turkey?

Pre-school education is the initial building block of education in Turkey. The registration age for kindergartens that provide preschool education is 2-6 years old.

Can foreigners go to school in Turkey?

All children of foreigners with a residency permit in Turkey can access free schooling in public schools.

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