International schools in Mexico

Though Mexico offers free primary and secondary public education, many expatriates prefer to send their children to a private and/or international school.

Private schools are abundant in Mexico, and many Mexicans prefer to send their children to one if they can afford it. The number of bilingual or bicultural schools is limited, although in larger cities there is a wider range of options. Due to the heavy traffic, however, travelling times can be a limiting factor when choosing a school. If you want to make sure that you are able to send your children to a school you really like, you might consider checking the schools in the local area before deciding where to live.

Most of the bicultural or bilingual schools offer a combination of foreign systems (American, British, German or others) with Mexican education. Secondary schools often offer the internationally recognized International Baccalaureate, which is very useful for students who want to continue their further education abroad.

Private schools in Mexico

The best Mexican bilingual schools are usually private schools and they are the only option for children whose mother-language is not Spanish. There are at least five private English language schools in Mexico City, Guadalajara and Monterrey, as well as French and German schools.

For English language schools in Mexico City you can check the American School Foundation, the Greengates School which follows a British curriculum, the Westhill Institute, Eton School and the Colegio Peterson. Another international school in Mexico City is the French Liceo Franco Mexicano, which offers the International Baccalaureate program. German education in Mexico City is offered by Alexander Von Humboldt German School, founded in 1894 and offering a trilingual curriculum.

For English language education in Guadalajara you can choose between the American School Foundation, the Anderson School, the Colegio John F. Kennedy, the Francis Bacon School and the Lincoln School. English language education in Monterrey is offered by the Colegio Norteamericano Monterrey, Colegio Americano Anahuac, Instituto John F. Kennedy, the Pan American School, and the Colegio Latinoamericano.

There are also various Montessori schools in Mexico offering kindergarten, junior and senior high school. For kindergarten and pre-school you will find a range of small institutions all over Mexico which only specialise at this level of education.

How to choose an international school in Mexico

The main criteria when choosing an international school in Mexico are obviously the curriculum, the quality of teaching and the teaching language. While most schools teach at a 50-50 ratio of English to Spanish (or another language), some schools teach the vast majority of courses in English (although students are required to take some exams in Spanish).

In addition to this you should also check the extracurricular activities, school facilities and degrees of teachers. The best way to get an impression of this is to talk to other parents at the schools for their advice.

Last but not least, private schools in Mexico are not cheap, so you will also have to consider enrollment and tuition fees. In addition to these you will have to pay for transportation, books, texts and school uniform.

Does this article help?

Do you have any comments, updates or questions on this topic? Ask them here:

Other comments

  • Jeanene Carvajal, 30 April 2011 Reply

    Schools in Mexico

    I am surprised you do not mention the Thomas Jefferson Institute which has been at the forefront of education innovation. Gordon Dryden, New Zealand researcher in education has named the ITJ one of the top 20 schools in the world. They have schools in the State of Mexico, Querétaro and Guadalajara. The school has partnered with Microsoft´s School of the Future Program, the principal has been hired by UNESCO as a subject matter expert in IT for Teachers, and finally it has been recognized by Grupo Expansion as one of the places to work in Mexico (100 Super Empresas).

    • Katrina Baker 22 Jan 2013, 03:55

      Family owned school with only business interests

      I am not surprised the school (TIJ Guadalajara) was not mentioned, As a cooperative "family owned " school with rampant nepotism and "hiring of friends and relatives", the school fires any teacher that actually has any real educational experience or wants to make a change in the lives of children. As both a parent and teacher, I am terribly disappointed at the treatment we have revived. Mostly because of cultural differences. I would avoid this school at all costs. And watch out...they think they have the legal eagle of all defenders. One day they will get the pants sued off of them.

  • hanna, 15 May 2012 Reply

    In Mexico City

    You are also not mentioning The Edron Academy and Lancaster School, both of british origin, excellent bicultural institutions in the South of the city...