Choosing the Right School in Barcelona for Expat Kids

Relocating to a new country with your family is an exciting yet challenging journey. For expat families considering a move to Barcelona, one of the most significant decisions you'll face is selecting the right school for your children. Barcelona offers a diverse educational landscape with various types of schools, each catering to different needs and preferences. In this guide we'll take you through the different school options available in Barcelona and help you determine which one aligns best with your family's educational goals and values. Plus, discover how BCN Ideal Services can provide essential support with nanny services and home tutoring, ensuring a smooth transition for your children.

Types of Schools in Barcelona

Barcelona offers a rich tapestry of educational institutions, reflecting its vibrant culture. From public schools immersing students in Catalan to private international schools offering an array of curricula, there's a school to match every family's needs. Understanding these diverse options is the first step toward making the right choice for your child's education.

Public Schools

Public schools, or "escuelas públicas" in Spanish, are state-funded and provide education for free. They follow the Spanish curriculum and offer education in Catalan, which is the primary language in Catalonia. These schools are a popular choice for many local families and expats looking to immerse their children in the local culture and language. However, language differences can be a challenge for non-Catalan and non-Spanish-speaking expat children.

Concertada (Semi-Private) Schools

Concertada schools receive partial funding from the government and are partially privately managed. They offer a balanced approach, often providing education in both Catalan and Spanish. These schools are sought after for their quality education and the bilingual opportunities they offer. However, they may have admission requirements and fees.

Private and International Schools

Private and international schools are typically the preferred choice for expat families. They often follow international curricula (e.g., IB, British, American) and teach in English or other foreign languages. This provides continuity for expat children and makes it easier to adapt to a new school system. These schools are known for their rigorous academic standards and extracurricular activities, but they come with a higher price tag.

Montessori and Alternative Schools

Barcelona is home to a variety of Montessori and alternative schools that emphasize individualized learning and creativity. These schools provide an alternative to traditional education and may be preferred by families seeking a more holistic and child-centered approach.

Choosing the Right School for Your Family

Selecting the ideal school for your children in Barcelona is a pivotal decision in your expat journey. Barcelona's diverse educational landscape offers various options, each catering to distinct needs. From language preferences to curriculum choices, this guide will navigate you through the considerations that will shape your child's educational experience in the city.

Language Preference

If language immersion is a priority, consider public or concertada schools. For a bilingual approach, look into concertada schools or private international schools.


The curriculum offered by the school plays a significant role. International schools follow different curricula, so choose one that aligns with your child's future educational goals.


Think about the school's location concerning your home or work. Short commutes can significantly reduce stress for both parents and children.

Extracurricular Activities

Research the extracurricular activities and after-school programs offered by the school. These can greatly enhance your child's development and social integration.

Admission Requirements

Check the admission requirements and deadlines for your chosen schools. Some have limited spaces and strict application procedures.


Understand the financial commitment involved. Private and international schools are generally more expensive, but they often provide scholarships and financial aid.

BCN Ideal Services: Your Childcare & Educational Support

As you embark on the journey of finding the perfect school for your children in Barcelona, BCN Ideal Services is here to provide support. Our experienced babysitters offer reliable childcare, ensuring your children are well-cared for, whether after school or during school vacation and days off. Additionally, our home tutor services can provide academic support to help your children excel in their studies. We understand that your child's education is a top priority, and our services are designed to make the transition to a new educational environment as smooth as possible.


Choosing the right school for your children in Barcelona is a crucial decision that can significantly impact their educational experience and overall well-being. Barcelona offers a diverse range of school options, catering to various educational preferences and values. Whether you prioritize language immersion, a specific curriculum, or extracurricular activities, there's a school in Barcelona that aligns with your family's goals. Your journey as an expat family in Barcelona is about to get even more exciting as you embark on this educational adventure with your children.

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