Tips for relocating and settling down in Italy’s trendiest city
So you are thinking of making Genoa your base, but want to make sure that your children get an international education?
Italy is not the country it used to be and over the last 20 years the three I slogan “Informatica, Inglese ed Impresa” – “IT, English and business” – has come to pass even in state schools, with primary schools teaching English from age 5/6. Classes are often multicultural and bilingual students are the norm.
Thanks to the influx of international workers and the Istituto Italiano di Tecnologia which is located in Genoa, the city has a valid series of dedicated fee-paying options to ensure both that your children can learn two or three languages from their earliest years as well as equipping them with internationally recognised qualifications so that they can continue their further education anywhere in the world.
Pre-school and nursery
Offering education from 12 months to 11 years and located in Genoa’s leafy Albaro district, the school is set within a magnificent seventeenth century Villa and provides a Montessori education whilst developing the nature of the children, teaching both English and Italian languages. The school’s mission is to have a school that is focused on nature and a student-centred education with a Montessori approach. It is a Green School, teaching ecological subjects, “sustainable” and green attitudes, alternative energies, and the teachers and children alike take care of a vegetable garden. The school is also ecologically furnished, and provides vegetarian and vegan menu possibilities. They propose different weekly workshops on visual arts, theatre and drama, gymnastics and recycling. The Montessori International School has two beautiful gardens, a vegetable garden, a big terrace which is much appreciated in the winter period when the grass is wet. Primary school teaching is mostly in English and includes Green School subjects such as Global Awareness, Green Studies, performing and visual arts. Extracurricular activities include yoga, dance, music, piano and guitar.
Another Montessori education establishment, this time in the San Martino quarter not far from the Port of Genoa going Eastwards. Nursery and pre-school, it accepts kids up to 6 years. Lots of extracurricular activities including musicality, dance and yoga with a mother tongue English teacher.
Founded in 1987, the kindergarten is aimed at children aged between 30 month and 6 years, located in lovely Chiavari, a town on the Eastern Riviera. Running a Nursery School Programme is based on the Early Years Foundation Stage (EYFS) of the British National Curriculum, which covers the seven main learning areas for this age group. They also run extracurricular English learning for children and youths.
- Montessori school – see above
- The Green School – see above
- ISG – see below
- DIS – see below
- Scuola Germanica – in
- German – see below
Located in Albaro right near the Genoa boardwalk, Corso Italia, very close to the Port area travelling Eastwards. A much more Italian oriented school, it has a bilingual project which offers a lot more hours of mothertongue English learning than a standard Italian primary school would offer.
Middle and High schools
Located in the leafy quarter called Quarto (near the Ge-Nervi motorway exit and just a 10 minute drive East from the port area) the ISG is the only school in Liguria accredited by the Council of International Schools and offers education from pre-school all the way up to diploma age. Primary and pre-primary follow the International Primary Curriculum, with Language & Literacy, Maths, PE, Music, Drama, Art, IT. Pre-school is bilingual English/Italian. From Primary on the main language is English with Italian offered both for native speakers and for Italian as a Foreign Language. In years 9 and 10 the kids follow the IB diploma programme.
Extra languages on offer: Middle school – Spanish & French High school – Spanish & French, Italian A & B
Admission process here – https://www.isgenoa.it/admissions/admission-process
Follows the IBO syllabus and provides classes from primary school age (6) all the way up to obtaining the IB diploma. International Baccalaureate syllabus followed from 10 to 18 years old, divided into the MYP – Middle Years Programme and the DP – Diploma Programme. The school is funded through a partnership of parents and the local authority. As part of the IBO ‘family’, Deledda International School strives to “develop inquiring, knowledgeable and caring young people who help to create a better and more peaceful world through intercultural understanding and respect.” (ibo.org) Deledda International School is an IB school offering both the IB Middle Years Program (MYP) and the IB Diploma Program (DP) with the commitment to becoming an IB Continuum School: our Primary School intends to apply for candidacy to start the PYP authorization process. The school is located in a modern, centrally located building and it is equipped with: science labs, an up-to-date library, two computer laboratories, a lunch cafeteria, online class register, lockers for students. All the classrooms have interactive multimedia boards or access to overhead projectors. We are particularly proud of our Science Labs, fully operational since September 2013. The labs are designed for maximum student participation allowing science staff to set up different areas of study with a big variety of student-centred experiments. This environment facilitates “learning by doing”.
Extra languages on offer: Chinese, French, German, Spanish
In the heart of Genoa’s Carignano quarter above the port, founded 150 years ago, Genoa’s German school offers education from kindergarten age 5 right up to 18. Students learn to read and write at the same time in both German and Italian and from Year 4 – the 4th year of primary school – English is introduced. The “Gymnasium” includes Years 5 to 12 and ends with the German “Reifeprüfung” exam as well as the Italian “maturità” exam, allowing students to frequent German/Italian/other universities abroad. It has the choice of linguistic high school or scientific high school. Apart from sciences, German, Italian and English, they also teach French and Latin. About 80% of students are Italian, and a part of the subjects are taught in Italian and others in German. School is also held on alternate Saturdays. In classes 4, 6 and 8, students participate in German, Maths and English testing together with the Land Turingia and in Class 10 they complete centralised testing produced by the KMK (German foreign ministry) in the same subjects. Exchanges are held with the Albertus-Magnus-Gymnasium in Lauingen (Year 7) and the Einstein-Gymnasium in Berlin (Year 10).
Extra languages on offer: all classes do advanced English, plus Italian, and one chosen between Chinese, Arabic, Japanese, Russian, French, German and Spanish. One high school section uses French as a first language, culminating in the Esabac diploma programme followed which permits direct access to French universities. Latin is learned for at least two years. Most students end their high school career here with the Advanced English qualification and many go on to universities abroad.