Swiss schools abroad

Swiss schools abroad ensure schooling abroad on the same level of education as in Switzerland. They have no religious affiliation, are non-profit-making, and private. They are subsidised by the Swiss Confederation provided they meet the requirements of the Federal Act on the Provision of Swiss Education Abroad.

Swiss schools abroad have no religious affiliation; they are non-profit-making private education institutions supported by Swiss school associations with an honorary board of governors. They are not only attended by Swiss children but also by children from the host country and third countries.

Teaching is bicultural, takes place in at least two languages, and enables students to continue their education in the systems of both Switzerland and their host country. Every Swiss school has at least one sponsor canton that advises and supervises it from a pedagogical perspective.

Swiss schools and education projects abroad are subsidised by the Confederation providing they meet the requirements of the Federal Act on the Provision of Swiss Education Abroad (Swiss Schools Act, SSA).

17 Swiss schools around the world

The Swiss Confederation recognises 17 Swiss schools abroad. The Federal Office of Culture is responsible for the promotion and recognition of Swiss schools abroad. The association, educationsuisse, represents the interests of Swiss schools in Switzerland. It also provides information about the support provided by the Confederation for Swiss teachers at international – mostly German – schools abroad. In places where there is no Swiss school such support is provided under certain conditions.

Swiss children may attend a German, French or Italian school abroad or one with another language of instruction. Embassies and consulates general can provide further information.

Swiss education on the initiative of committed parent groups

The following opportunities are available for offering a Swiss education to the children of Swiss families abroad that are not living near a Swiss school:

  • request for federal funding for a Swiss-trained teacher at a non-Swiss school abroad

  • request for federal funding to conduct courses in Swiss social studies and in the Swiss national languages

  • support in procuring Swiss teaching material

Only a Swiss parents association or a Swiss organisation is eligible to initiate such an action or apply for funding or support. Please address any questions to the Federal Office of Culture.