International Schools

In Hong Kong, International Schools are privately run, and are operated on a self-financing and market-driven basis. They are popular among non-local families as they follow non-local curricula designed for the needs of a particular cultural or linguistic group, or students who do not wish to sit for local examinations. International curricula offered include those of Australia, Canada, France, Germany, Japan, Korea, Singapore, the United Kingdom and the United States, as well as the International Baccalaureate (IB) programmes.

The majority of international schools uses English as the main teaching and learning language, while a number of them use other languages, depending on the curricula. Different from publicly-funded schools, Chinese language education, depending on the individual schools’ education objectives, is optional for students in international schools.

The international school sector offers a diverse student body and a multicultural learning environment. Non-local students, who come from more than 30 different nationalities (mainly Canada, the United Kingdom, the United States, and Australia) account for around 70% of the total student population in international schools.  There are over 30 individual school operators providing various national and international curricula at primary and secondary levels.

Among private schools in Hong Kong, there is another genre of school named Private Independent Schools (PISs).  These school primarily serve the demand from local families seeking alternative education environment to publicly-funded schools. Similar to international schools, PISs mainly offer non-local curricula with English being the main language of instruction.  Different from international schools, Hong Kong Permanent Residents account for around 70% of the total enrollment.

For both international schools and private independent schools, scholarships and financial assistance may be available to your children if they fulfil the criteria set by the schools.

Currently, there are 54 international schools and 8 private independent schools in Hong Kong. Some operate in more than one campus.  There is also an ESF special school for admitting students with special education needs.  For more details on international schools and PISs, you may check out the International Schools in Hong Kong website.

Hong Kong has been a popular destination for international students who seek high-quality education and to obtain globally-recognised qualifications. In this city, a total of 38 international schools and PISs are IB World schools, with 25 of them authorised to offer the IB Diploma Programme (IBDP). Generally, international school students in Hong Kong achieve excellent results in public examinations. For instance, the percentage of candidates achieving a perfect score (45 points) in international schools offering IBDP was high, accounting for 5-7% of candidates scoring a perfect score globally in the 2021/22 and 2022/23 school year.