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Looking for an international English school


I'm about to relocated to Brussels and looking for an English international school for my 3 children (ages going from 4 to 12).

While searching the Internet I've come across the International Montessori School (

It looks like a very good school, but I'm not familiar with the Montessori system and the IBO MYP.

I would be grateful to hear from parents that have direct experience with this school.


A couple of quick questions:
1. Do you know where you will be living/ working in Brussels?
2. Do you plan on living in the suburbs?
3. Do you think your children (especially the oldest) will be returning to a U.S. or British system?

Apr 17, 2013 09:29
Sarah Crew

The Bulletin's annual Education Guide, covering the Belgian system and international schools, including Montessori, is out this week. It will be on sale in newsstands and available to purchase from this website.

Good luck!

Apr 17, 2013 10:47

There are many international schools in Brussels and surrounding area.

They cover many different educational systems. including UK/ America/ international/Montessori/ IB/ (GSCE, A-Level).
Some of the schools are bilingual/ Others are English education with second language lessons given.
The price ranges enormously (some of the schools are out of most peoples price range unless the company your are employed by pay).

These pages cover some- but not all:

If you give more information such as NAN's questions, we can offer more guidance.

Apr 17, 2013 11:41

I hope the Bulletin's guide was proof read first, I have the previous copy and its packed full of inaccuracies and very narrow number of entries for local schools, claiming some schools are local ones when they are in fact private, claiming some local schools are international ones, I wonder who on earth wrote the magazine as they didn't bother checking facts and much is fiction.

Apr 17, 2013 14:34

check out recently opened Bogaerts International School. It is in Waterloo however so it does depend where you will be living, but I have heard good things about it.

Apr 17, 2013 17:41

Dear NAN,

I'll be working in the centre of Brussels. Our idea was to find a house next to the school, wherever that is. We have no idea where our next country will be, but the kids have always attended international British schools, so that is what we hope to continue (leading to IB). My employer covers only part of the fee, so the most renowned international schools in Brussels are borderline for us. We also value French, so we were hoping in a bilingual school, which however guarantees excellent quality of education.

I have read all the websites with attention, but of course on paper they all look good, that is why I was hoping for some direct experience of parents.

Thank you and have a good day

Apr 20, 2013 07:28

Unfortunately the secondary schools offering IB are the most expensive . There are smaller primary schools for those up to 11 are not as expensive, lots of people I know put their children in the smaller British schools for primary and move them to the larger schools for secondary.

If you want the children all in the same school:

Leading to IB you are looking at:

BSB - British schoo of Brussels Teuvren (GCSE/A-Level/ IB )
ISB- International school of Brussels IB
ST John's Waterloo ( 30min from Brussels)

The only Montessori catering for age up to 16:
St. Stevens-Woluwe 'Hof Kleinenberg'
For Children aged 2 to 16 years old
Children's House, Primary and IB Middle School

You asked about Montessori- this is a very different style of Education- the style suits some families and not others- I have seen both. Children who transfer from this system to most mainstream system often struggle with the difference in teaching style and expectations. Please research the Montessori system and understand and make sure it would be suitable for you and your children. Also check the amount of training in Montessori methods there staff have received this varies greatly from school to school!!!

In terms of bi-lingual schools - OFTEN you will find the children in these schools are often already bi-lingual or speak french at home and these for children who are only English speaking do not benefit as you would expect- as the French speakers are there to improve their English and want to speak English,

If you want your child to have exposure to French- all the international schools have daily French lessons. This combined with after school activities such as sports/ dance etc. can be just as good (depending on length of time here and child's aptitude for languages).

If you were looking for just primary schools I would recommend looking at BISB- British international School of Brussels- Rue Emile Max

Apr 20, 2013 10:34

I would need schools up to the age of 16, that would be the age of my oldest by the time we are supposed to leave the country, so we do not actually need the IB in Belgium, but that is something we are aiming at. The ideal would be to send all kids to the same school to simplify logisitcs. BISB, for example, would not be good since 2 of the kids are already too old.

The Montessori school I referenced at the beginning, also offers the IB, so I had assumed that their Montessori path would lead to the IB naturally, and that consequently a move to another 'traditiona' school would not be an issue.

Since you mentioned BSB, do you know whether it is possible to have after school activities in French close to the school in Tervuren, or is everything in Dutch?

Thank you

Apr 20, 2013 11:09

Depends on where you live for activities available in french.

Areas closest to school are:
Dutch communes Tervuren including Moorsel, Vossem, Duisburg Everberg, Leefdaal, Overijse. (Therefore mainly Dutch speaking local activities for children)

French and Dutch: Kraainem and Wezembeek-Oppem. (Both french and Dutch local activities for children)

and Further into Brussels Woluwe St Pierre/ Auderghem (French and Dutch)

Apr 20, 2013 12:54

Any comments/ideas of the pros and cons of MYP versus IGSCE?

Apr 21, 2013 07:11