In terms of schooling for children, Phnom Penh offers the widest range of options at international standards.
The Charming City offers the best schooling options in Cambodia, and there are a plethora of Phnom Penh international schools using American, British, and French curricula. Don’t be fooled by the names, though; some of the worst schools in Cambodia call themselves “international” or “American” or “British,” but their curricula don’t match their titles. Local schools are generally agreed to be terrible, and they are best avoided if at all possible. The ones we have listed here are “real” international schools.
If you’re just getting started, we have a detailed blog post about choosing an international school in Cambodia that covers things to consider before you start your search for the right school for your child. Below, we have info about the most popular international schools in Phnom Penh:
The two biggest international schools in Phnom Penh, Northbridge International School and International School of Phnom Penh (ISPP), are accredited abroad, offering International Baccalaureate programs through high school. Both have gorgeous campuses and a wide range of extracurricular activities. Their teachers have proper teaching qualifications from Western countries. Their curricula and teachers are the best, but it doesn’t come cheap. The tuition is quite expensive, and there can be a “brat pack” feel among the students. That said, it’s hard to imagine a kid getting a better education back home.
Northbridge has recently joined the prestigious Nord Anglia network of international schools — it is no longer owned by the Royal Group — and is leveraging the Nord Anglia relationship to bring even more opportunities to their students, including collaborations with Julliard and Barcelona Football Club. Touring the campus will make you rethink your childhood education and make you wish that you had been raised in Cambodia. Tuition costs between $5,000 and $22,000 depending on the age of the student, including capital fees.
ISPP is a not-for-profit school that offers one of the best educational opportunities Cambodia has to offer. They’ve recently moved to a new, beautiful campus with an impressive range of facilities, from a professional-sized performing arts theater and swimming pool to playgrounds, computer labs, and sports fields. ISPP is committed to diversity and has students from more than 50 countries and offers an excellent education for students aged 3 through 12th grade. Tuition cost is $7,000 to $22,000 depending on age and including capital fees.
Also popular with expats is the slightly less expensive (and more centrally located) iCAN British International School, which teaches a British curriculum for pre-school students up to grade 9. Their internationally focused program uses International Primary Curriculum (IPC), International Middle Years Curriculum (IMYC), and National Curriculum for England. Tuition starts at $5,000 and goes to $13,000 depending on age, that includes a yearly capital fee.
The Lycée Descartes, a school licensed by the French government, offering international-quality education in English and French from pre-school through high school that follows the French national curriculum. Tuition ranges from $6,000 to $8,000 per year, and there’s a discount of around $2,000 if the student is Cambodian or French. Scholarships are available.
Footprints is a popular school for expats not looking to break the bank (and who want their kids to learn to speak Khmer). Footprints offers a bilingual program in English and Khmer from nursery classes to grade 10, in several locations around Phnom Penh. The curriculum focuses on math, language arts, science and social studies, as well as computers, art, swimming, and more for an integrated approach to education. Footprints are Cambridge registered for primary and secondary, and internationally accredited through Western Association of Schools and Colleges (WASC). Prices range from $1,800 to $4,000 depending on age.
The Canadian International School of Phnom Penh (CIS) is a new, accredited school with two campuses that offers preschool through grade 6 for the coming year. There are plans to expand through grade 12 by adding a new grade each year. CIS offers a Canadian Curriculum from the province of Alberta, in English, with internationally certified teachers, many of whom are from Canada. The brand-new main campus on Phnom Penh’s Diamond Island is impressive — even nicer than many schools in Canada — and is very centrally located compared to some of the other big international schools. Yearly fees start at $5,000 for nursery students up to $16,000 for grades 7 through 9.
Logos International School is a Christian school that teaches students from pre-school through grade 12. The school is a fully accredited member of the Association of Christian Schools International (ACSI) and the Western Association of Schools and Colleges (WASC). The curriculum follows North American standards, and most of the teachers come from that continent. The school is known for solid academics, but can be difficult adjustment for non-Christians — bible studies are mandatory. Annual tuition at Logos is $3,200 to $6,500 based on grade, and there’s a $200 annual capital fee per family. Discounts are offered for large families and the children of missionaries.
Brighton International School is a pre-school and primary school for children aged 2 to 7 in the heart of BKK1. Subjects are taught in English and Khmer, and the curriculum is based on the UK national curriculum, using the Early Years Foundation System (EYFS) for young learners. Despite its central city location, we were happy to hear that they have a swimming pool. Fees range from $1570 to $1670 for half-day students and $2350 to $2450 for full-time students.
Started by two French mothers who wanted to offer their children a true international education, The Giving Tree offers part- and full-time programs for children from 6 months through 4th grade. The primary program is supported by the International Primary Curriculum (IPC), and while classes are taught in English, it’s possible for students to study Japanese, French, and Khmer. Their teachers are from all around the world, and most are accredited in their home countries. Tuition ranges from $1,600 to $3,000 depending on age.
Hope International School is a faith-based Christian not-for-profit school that offers an international core curriculum that is compatible with the US, Canada, New Zealand, Australia, and UK educational systems. They offer the International General Certificate of Secondary Education (IGCSE) for grades 9 and 10 and the International Baccalaureate Diploma Program for grade 11 and 12 students. Hope International is less expensive than the other international schools, but when they say it’s faith-based they aren’t kidding; their schooling comes with a heavy dose of religion. They have a two-tiered pricing system with significantly lower rates for the children of Christian missionaries. Tuition ranges from $3,400 to $8,100 for missionary families and $6,000 to $12,000 for all others.
Northbridge International School
Street 2004, Phnom Penh
P.O. Box 2042, Phnom Penh 3
T: 023 886 000
International School of Phnom Penh, ISPP
Hun Neang Boulevard, Phnom Penh
T: 023 425 088
iCAN British International School
85 Sothearos Blvd, Tonle Bassac, Phnom Penh
T: 023 222 4168
Lycée Français René Descartes
1132 Street 96, Phnom Penh
P.O. Box 1132, Wat Phnom
T: 023 722 044; 023 430 108
Grades 2 through 8: 220 Street 430, Tumnub Teuk, Phnom Penh
T: 023 222 084
Nursery school through grade 1: 1 Street 181 (corner of Street 475), Tumnub Teuk, Phnom Penh
T: 087 222 084
Toul Kork campus: 16-18 Street 570, Toul Kork, Phnom Penh
T: 023 884 497
Canadian International School of Phnom Penh (CIS)
Bassac Garden City, 41 Norodom Blvd, Phnom Penh
T: 077 503 778
Logos International School
928 Street 1015, Phnom Penh Thmei, Phnom Penh
T: 017 473 515
Brighton International School
79 Street 294, BKK1, Phnom Penh
T: 023 213 149
The Giving Tree
17 Street 71, BKK1, Phnom Penh
T: 017 997 112
Hope International School
239 – 243 Street 271, Toul Tom Pong, Phnom Penh
P.O. Box 2521, Phnom Penh 3, 12000
T: 023 21 75 65
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