Raising Kids in Uruguay? A Guide to International Schools in Montevideo
Uruguay´s capital city, Montevideo, is fast becoming a major destination for people from all over the world. It is home to dozens of embassies and consulates, and is teeming with beautiful places, interesting sites and fantastic opportunities for investments. Uruguay´s education system has always been good, and the private institutions here are on par with some of the finest around the globe. Here is a quick look at the most prominent international schools in the city. Families who are here temporarily for work as well as those who are here permanently benefit from the variety of high-caliber schools available.
Uruguayan American School
The Uruguayan American School (UAS) was founded in 1958 as a private college preparatory school. It was started by American citizens living in Uruguay, with the goal of providing the same quality and variety of education offered in the United States. It accepts approximately 300 new international and Uruguayan students each year in kindergarten through 12th grade. The UAS works to make sure that every student graduating from the school is prepared to attend university by instilling high standards of academic excellence and a wide diversity of knowledge. UAS is non-profit and supports its self through tuition. The 7.5 acre campus is located in Montevideo´s Carrasco neighborhood, a beautiful and safe suburb of the city. Facilities include: two science labs, a computer lab, a music room (not so common here in Uruguay), an auditorium, a library, a regulation soccer field, basket ball courts and three playgrounds.
The British School
Also located in Carrasco, The British School celebrates its Founders Day on October 8th. The school was started in 1908 with the objective of creating bonds between Uruguayan and British children, so as to instill friendship and understanding of other cultures. The school moved through two campuses before finally reaching its permanent home on ten hectares of land in Carrasco in 1958. In 1977, it was among the first in the world to introduce the International Baccalaureate program. It now boasts over 700 children in the elementary and middle school and almost 600 in the high school.
The British School is one of the most popular international schools in the country, known for its quality education and excellent facilities. The school offers programs for both summer and winter, allowing the family members of students to enroll in an activities program including free access to swimming pools, gyms, tennis courts and other amenities depending on the season. There is also usually a summer camp during February, however this year due to construction on the campus there will be no summer camp.
The Italian international school in Montevideo, Scuola Italiana, was founded in September of 1886. Like most of the others schools on this list, it is located in the Carrasco district. This school’s stellar reputation stems in large part from its language program. Scuola Italiana offers classes from nursery school through 12th grade and encourages tri-cultural and tri-lingual studies (in English, Spanish, and Italian), with English studies starting at the age of three. The school’s academic program is organized by the Alianza Cultural Uruguay – Estados Unidos ( Uruguay- U.S. Cultural Alliance).
The French school is located on the coast of Montevideo´s Buceo neighborhood. Some of the perks of its waterside location include views of the port from the campus, and the unique ability for students to participate in sailing classes as a part of the curriculum. The striking school building was erected in 2001. The Lycée is one of the 460 learning establishments spread out over 130 countries that comprise the French language learning network.
The school offers the International Baccalaureate program, which affords the students graduating from Lycée Francais the opportunity to qualify for study at the most prestigious universities in Europe and around the world. The education at the Lycée is based on a trilingual learning system. Each student graduates speaking perfect French and Spanish, with high proficiency in English. Students may also opt to take a fourth language: Latin, Portuguese or Italian.
This German International School was established in 1857, originally as a parochial school for the Evangelical community from Germany. It was first located in the old city, and held only 17 students. Since then, its size has changed dramatically! Now the school has two braches: one in the Pocitos neighborhood and another in the Carrasco district. English is introduced into the curriculum at age three, and students have the option of earning a certificate of English Proficiency from Cambridge University.