Expat parents moving to South Africa have a wide range of high-quality options for educating their children. South African schools are classified as either public and government-funded or independent schools and privately run.
In practice, there are also semi-private schools, meaning that while they are ultimately accountable to the government, they are partially self-funded and are often able to offer better facilities and a higher standard of education than other government schools.
Although there are 11 official languages in South Africa, English is most commonly spoken in major cities such as Cape Town and Johannesburg and is therefore the teaching medium in the vast majority of schools. That is, however, where uniformity ends – schools in South Africa vary widely in terms of cost, quality and curriculum.
While most expats choose to send their children to private or international schools, the decision depends on a number of factors, such as location, cost, the availability of places at the school and the intended length of the family’s stay in South Africa.