Expat Essentials

Expat Essentials: Dispatches’ guide to international schools in Rome, Pt. 1

As we’ve said so many times before, one of the bigger challenges for English-speaking expat families – even for well-paid corporate nomads – is finding a satisfactory English-language international school. But it’s true …..

Such schools cater to expat students, with curricula tied to the host nation in question, or an international education organization such as Edexcel, Cambridge International Examinations, and International Baccalaureate; if you’re curious about the International Baccalaureate program, by the by, Dispatches Europe has a primer for your convenience.

Ambrit Girls Tournament6 2013Wherever you’re headed, do not wait to get there before starting the application process with your preferred international school, which can be lengthy.

Rome. The Eternal City. The city so above all others only Paris is worthy enough to be its sister (and vice versa). Fashion, history, art, culture, music… Rome is all of these things, and so much more.

The city known officially as Roma Capitale is one of the oldest continuously inhabited areas in the world, with the first signs of humanity dating back 14 millennia. Rome came into existence on the site 21 April 753 BCE, founded by either Romulus (who killed his brother, Remus, over the building of the city) or Iulus (the son of Trojan refugee Aeneas), depending on which legend you choose to believe.

From there, the city would evolve from monarchy to republic to empire; at one point, Rome’s reach covered a span from the Atlantic Ocean to the Euphrates, and from Britain to Egypt.

Today, Rome is one of the business capitals of Europe, the financial center that makes possible all the Italian brands ranging from Ferrari to the top fashion houses including Fendi, which completed a new Rome headquarters in 2015.

There is so much to know about Rome that several guides would be needed to cover everything. Thankfully, we only need three such guides to cover the city’s international schools.

imgresAcorn House International: Nearly 20 years ago, Acorn House International was founded by Michaela Diena and Emma Mantripp with seven students making up the first class.

Today, 200 students between two years old and 14 years old follow the same holistic, bilingual, project-based curriculum first dreamed of by Diena when she was pregnant with her third child.

Acorn House is a partner with Cambridge and the Rome International Schools Association and is a Sir William Burrough Primary School.

  • Fees (2016-17 academic year): N/A; contact school for information
  • Requirements: Complete and submit initial inquiry form; visit school twice; attend a trial day; accept terms and conditions of enrollment
  • Application Deadline: Age cutoff per grade is 31 December
  • Contact: [email protected]
  • Website: acornhouse.school

ambritLOGO_siteAmbrit International School: More than 500 students between the ages of three and 14 from 60 nationalities attend Ambrit International School’s two campuses annually.

Ambrit is an IB Primary and Middle Years school with a bilingual curriculum in English and Italian; French and Mandarin are offered as additional languages. The mission of the school is to provide “an international education for students from diverse cultural backgrounds” meant to foster “the cognitive, aesthetic, physical, social and emotional growth of the whole child, helping each child to reach his or her greatest potential in a stimulating and caring environment.”

  • Fees (2016-17 academic year): 2,000€ one-time registration fee; 2,000€ one-time capital assessment fee; 10,600€ – 19,185€ annual tuition fee, depending on grade level; full schedule of fees here
  • Requirements: Complete and submit application form with required documentation
  • Application Deadline: N/A; contact school for information
  • Contact: [email protected]
  • Website: ambrit-rome.com

AAEAAQAAAAAAAAb-AAAAJGU2YTE0ZWI4LTlkY2EtNDUwOC1iOTgyLTFjZWE1OWRhOTcxZgAmerican Overseas School of Rome: Flying the Stars and Stripes alongside il Tricolore, the American Overseas School of Rome “offers the best of an American-International education in a supportive learning environment.”

More than 600 students from the United States, Italy and 50 other nations attend the pre-K through 12 school, whose U.S. curriculum offers Advanced Placement courses, and exams from AP, International Baccalaureate, and the College Board’s PSAT and SAT.

AOSR was founded in 1947 as the Overseas School of Rome by five British and five American parents who, “after finding out that the Allied troops were being moved to Trieste, wished to establish an international, nondenominational school that would combine the best of the UK and American systems.”

  • Famous Alumns: Alessandra Mussolini (Italian politician, granddaughter of Benito Mussolini); Samuel D. Gruber (American art and architectural historian); Justin Davidson (Italian classical music and architecture critic)
  • Fees (2016-17 academic year): 5,500€ one-time capital assessment fee; 800€ one-time registration fee per student; 11,200€ – 24,000€ annual tuition fee, depending on grade; full schedule of fees here
  • Requirements: Submit initial inquiry; visit campus, complete and submit application
  • Application Deadline: Rolling deadline
  • Contact: [email protected]
  • Website: aosr.org

imgresCastelli International School: Before the founding of Castelli International School in 1977, there were no bilingual international schools in Italy. Today, 120 students between the ages of 6 years old and 14 years old go through a bilingual curriculum with a hands-on approach to learning.

Castelli is also a “green school,” running several projects tied to bettering the environment, making as little impact on it as possible. The school boasts about its library, made from wine vats, for starters.

Castelli is a Cambridge Checkpoint school with small class sizes to maximize learning potential.

  • Fees (2015-16 academic year; newest available): 500€ deposit; 500€ registration fee; 1,000€ one-time capital assessment fee; 8,500€ – 10,700€ annual tuition fee, depending on grade level
  • Requirements: Complete and submit online application
  • Application Deadline: Rolling deadline
  • Contact: [email protected]
  • Website: castelli-international.it

imgres-1Core International School: Core International School was founded in 1983 by British educators with the aim of promoting harmony among the students, no matter their background.

About 120 students between three years old and 11 years old attend Core’s nursery and primary schools, all learning under the British National Curriculum. Italian is taught beginning at age five.

  • Fees (2016-17 academic year): 350€ registration fee for new students, 250€ for returning students; 7,100€ – 9,400€ annual tuition fee, depending on grade level
  • Requirements: Meet with head teacher and tour the campus; provide required documentation
  • Application Deadline: N/A; contact school for information
  • Contact: [email protected]
  • Website: coreinternationalschool.it
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Lifestyle journalist. Born in Louisville. Raised in Kansas. Where I lay my head is home.

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