Skip to content

Best schools in Costa Rica

Last Updated on November 12, 2022 by chioma

Costa Rica is a beautiful country with many wonderful things to see and do. It’s also home to some of the best schools in the world, which makes it an excellent place to send your child or student if they are looking to get an education that will help them reach their full potential. Here are just a few of the reasons why Costa Rica is such a great place for education: Costa Rica has a well-established system of public schools throughout the country, which means that even if you choose to go with private schooling, you can be assured that your child or student will still receive an excellent education at one of these institutions. Costa Rica has many prestigious universities that offer top-notch programs in all different areas of study. There are many opportunities for students who want to learn English as a second language (ESL). The cost of living is relatively low compared with other countries in Central America and South America.

You may find it hard to access the right information on the internet, so we are here to help you in the following article, providing the best and updated information on Best schools in Costa Rica. Read on to learn more. We at collegelearners have all the information that you need about Best schools in Costa Rica.

Best schools in Costa Rica

What are the most popular Universities in Costa Rica? uniRank tries to answer this question by publishing the 2022 Costa Rican University Ranking of 55 Costa Rican higher-education institutions meeting the following uniRank selection criteria:

  • being chartered, licensed or accredited by the appropriate Costa Rican higher education-related organization
  • offering at least four-year undergraduate degrees (bachelor degrees) or postgraduate degrees (master or doctoral degrees)
  • delivering courses predominantly in a traditional, face-to-face, non-distance education format

Our aim is to provide a non-academic League Table of the top Costa Rican Universities based on valid, unbiased and non-influenceable web metrics provided by independent web intelligence sources rather than data submitted by the Universities themselves.

2022 Costa Rican University Ranking


RankUniversityTown
1Universidad de Costa RicaSan José
2Universidad NacionalHeredia
3Instituto Tecnológico de Costa RicaCártago …
4Universidad Latina de Costa RicaSan Pedro …
5Universidad EARTHGuacimo …
6INCAE Business School, Costa RicaAlajuela …
7Universidad Técnica NacionalAlajuela …
8Universidad Latinoamericana de Ciencia y TecnologíaSan José
9Universidad Internacional de las AméricasSan José
10Universidad Autónoma de Centro AméricaCipreses de Curridabat …
11Universidad VeritasSan José
12Universidad HispanoamericanaSan José
13Universidad San MarcosSan José
14Universidad Americana, Costa RicaSan José
15Universidad para la Cooperación InternacionalSan José
16Universidad de Cartago Florencio del CastilloCártago
17Universidad FidélitasSan Pedro …
18Universidad CenfotecSan José …
19Universidad de IberoaméricaSan José
20Universidad de Ciencias Médicas, Costa RicaSan José
21Universidad Politécnica InternacionalSan José
22Universidad Libre de Costa RicaSan José
23Universidad Católica de Costa RicaSan José
24Universidad de la Salle Costa RicaSan José
25Universidad Central, Costa RicaSan José
26LEAD UniversitySan José
27Universidad de las Ciencias y el Arte de Costa RicaSan José
28Universidad CreativaSan José
29Universidad Federada San Judas TadeoSan José
30Universidad Santa PaulaSan José
31Universidad Bíblica LatinoamericanaSan José
32Universidad Castro CarazoSan José
33Universidad MagisterSan Pedro
34Universidad Adventista de Centro AméricaAlajuela
35Universidad Fundepos Alma MaterUruca
36Universidad del TurismoSan José
37Universidad de San JoséSan José
38Universidad Internacional San Isidro LabradorPérez Zeledón
39Universidad de Ciencias EmpresarialesAlajuela
40Universidad Juan Pablo IISan José
41Universidad Empresarial de Costa RicaSan José
42Universidad Escuela Libre de DerechoSan José
43Universidad Santa LucíaSan José
44Universidad Continental de las Ciencias y las ArtesSan José
45Universidad Independiente de Costa RicaSan José
46Universidad Tecnológica CostarricenseSan José
47Universidad Centroamericana de Ciencias SocialesSan José
48Universidad InvenioTilarán
49Universidad Evangélica de las AméricasSan José
50Universidad Isaac NewtonSan José
51Universidad Panamericana, Costa RicaSan José …
52Universidad San Juan de la CruzSan José
53Universidad Braulio CarrilloSan José
54Universidad Metodista de Costa RicaSan José
55Universidad NeotropicalSan José

Best International Schools in San Jose

Costa Rica and its capital city San Jose have long had a reputation for being progressive. It has a stable democracy and forward-thinking social policies, places environmental protection among its highest priorities, and has an excellent and free public education system.

So why should you consider sending your child to an international school in San Jose? There are two big reasons: language and curriculum. Being a Spanish-speaking nation, Costa Rica’s public schools obviously teach through Spanish. This can pose a problem for expat children with no grasp on the local language.

San Jose’s international schools teach mostly teach through English and Spanish, or Spanish and the language of the international school’s primary curriculum (e.g. French, German). The International Baccalaureate and American curricula remain the most popular. Both are taught in international schools all over the world, so it’s much easier to keep your child’s education consistent when they move to a new country. Plenty of international schools in San Jose also offer a dual curriculum with the IB or American curricula and the national Costa Rican one.

The public school calendar in Costa Rica runs from February until November or December, because the country’s summer season is from November to January. International schools may choose to follow this calendar, or stick to the northern hemisphere calendar of September to June. The choice is up to each individual international school.

Another thing that varies from school to school is the admissions process. Demand for international school places can be high, and waiting lists are not uncommon for the most sought-after schools. You will usually be asked to provide passports, proof of vaccinations, previous school reports, and to complete admissions forms. Depending on the school your child may also need to sit an entrance exam or attend an interview. Regardless, it’s best to apply as early as possible.

The international schools in San Jose aren’t located in the centre of the city, but rather spread throughout the outskirts and neighbouring towns in the Central Valley. These include Santa Ana, San Antonio, La Guacima, and Granadilla among others.

You’ll find all of the usual features you’d expect from international schools around the world in San Jose. That includes native English-speaking teachers, small class sizes, additional language classes, and usually a school bus service. School sizes can range from a few hundred students to over a thousand.

One difference between international schools in San Jose and elsewhere is extracurricular activities. Although every school is different, the extracurricular program in many of the city’s schools is mostly focused on sports. Some may offer art classes and other options, but sports are usually the primary option. Luckily, most schools have excellent sports facilities.

Below, we have compiled our top 10 international schools in San Jose. However, there are another 11 schools to choose from in the city. You can find the best international school for your child by personalising your results. Just fill in your search criteria, and we will calculate a personal score for every international school in San Jose based on your requirements.

Best 10 International Schools in San Jose

Out of a total of 21 International Schools in San Jose.

Based on the aggregated preferences of our users in the last 30 days.

The British School of Costa Rica

The British School of Costa Rica is dedicated to serving the Costa Rican Community and the International Community resident in Costa Rica by offering an excellent, English/Spanish bilingual education. CurriculumIB, British Languages of instructionEnglish, Spanish Ages3 to 18 Yearly fees – 2022/2023 from: ₡ 4,418,584
to: ₡ 9,197,869 Reviews

Lighthouse International School

We are an international school with the vision of transforming lives through character education with a solid foundation of academic excellence. CurriculumIB, American, Christian Language of instructionEnglish Ages3 to 18 Yearly fees – 2022/2023 from: ₡ 5,495,149
to: ₡ 7,518,731 Reviews

The European School

The European School was founded in 1989 by Anne Aronson who longed to see in her adopted country, Costa Rica, a school emphasizing the Liberal Arts and the Humanities such as she had known during her formative years in France and in her university education at the Sorbonne in Paris. CurriculumIB Language of instructionEnglish Ages3 to 18 Yearly fees – 2022/2023 from: ₡ 4,992,572
to: ₡ 8,259,317

Pan-American School

* Fully bilingual (English-Spanish)
* First and only IB Continuum School in Costa Rica.
* Multicultural and international (30 nationalities represented).
* Mid-sized community, family environment.
* Careful attention to each child and their specific needs.
* Beautiful modern campus, with lots of gardens and recreational spaces.
* Students have an opportunity to earn 3 diplomas: IB, US High School, and Costa Rican Baccalaureate.
* Strong ESL and SSL language support programs; strong special needs program. CurriculumIB, American, Costa Rican Languages of instructionEnglish, Spanish Ages2 to 18 This school does not make their fees public.

International Christian School

CurriculumIB, Christian, Costa Rican Language of instructionEnglish Ages2 to 18 This school does not make their fees public.

American International School of Costa Rica

International students and teachers, US diploma, family-oriented environment CurriculumAmerican, Costa Rican Language of instructionEnglish Ages3 to 18 This school does not make their fees public.

United World College Costa Rica

We are a non-profit organization that offers a two-year pre-university residence, focused on experimental learning for students 16 to 18 years of age.

Our educational program consists of three main areas: Academic (International Baccalaureate Diploma), co-curricular, and residential life. All learning activities and opportunities incorporate at least one of the competencies of UWC Costa Rica: social responsibility, diversity, conflict transformation, sustainability, leadership and healthy lifestyle.

Our mission is to instruct a diverse group of young people to become happy, healthy and committed individuals, capable through their leadership and commitment to create positive change in their communities and contribute to building a more peaceful and sustainable world.

Being the only UWC in Latin America, we offer a bilingual program, opportunities to learn more about the region’s social, cultural and political history, and options to explore Costa Rica. Costa Rica’s long history of peace, democracy and environmental protection, as well as the absence of a national militia, make the country the perfect setting to develop the UWC Costa Rica curriculum. CurriculumIB, Costa Rican Languages of instructionEnglish, Spanish Ages16 to 18 This school does not make their fees public.

Humboldt Schule

Humboldt Schule is a German international school. CurriculumGerman Language of instructionGerman Ages3 to 18 Yearly fees – 2022/2023 from: ₡ 4,785,000
to: ₡ 4,785,006

Berkeley Academy

Berkeley Academy is an exclusive, private (K-12) U.S.- Costa Rican AP/College Board Certified school serving the international community located in Santa Ana, Costa Rica. CurriculumAmerican, Costa Rican Language of instructionEnglish Ages3 to 18 This school does not make their fees public.

Golden Valley School

Golden Valley School is an international, trilingual educational institution whose mission is “educating for life, developing better men and women”. We offer an excellent academic program that encourages our students to be true to their ideals and become agents of change in an evolving world. We believe that each child has a special talent to develop and an innate ability to learn and acquire skills throughout life.
At Golden Valley School, teaching and learning are based on a process of continuous improvement through a comprehensive and holistic education, centered on values such as; discipline, respect, peace, solidarity, conviction, excellence, integrity, and protection of the environment. CurriculumIB Languages of instructionEnglish, Spanish Ages3 to 18 This school does not make their fees public.