International Schools And Education In Ethiopia – What Are The Options? – that will be the topic of today’s article.
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As we’ve discussed earlier, education in Ethiopia is one of the best you could expect in Africa. When the country started, the teaching was based on the principles of the Ethiopian Orthodox Church. Besides, what is known as secular education was adopted in the early 1900s as the system continued to develop.
But, in Ethiopia, there’s still a need for improvement as illiteracy remains high in the country, even when compared with other areas of Africa. And for the fact that rural areas are still poorly served, and girls drop out at a higher rate than their female counterparts, the country still wants to build more schools.
However, the general education sequence in Ethiopia is eight years of primary school, two years of lower secondary school, and two years of higher secondary school. Meanwhile, foreign nationals are not accepted in the public schools of Ethiopia. But, do we have international schools in this country?
Of course, this has been the question that got peoples’ attention recently. Many people still wonder if there are the best international schools in the country. Well, many international schools provide quality education and impact. So, worry less if you’ve been surfing the internet to get the correct information about the best schools in Ethiopia.
Today, we have compiled this article to explain the best international schools in Ethiopia. Not only is that, but we will walk you through the facilities that you can enjoy or have access to while studying in the best international schools in this country. Would you love to know what we’ve unleashed for you? Read further!
Top 7 Reasons to Study in Ethiopia Today
Ethiopia is undoubtedly Africa’s oldest independent country and one of the fastest-growing economies today. With a population of about 100 million and an annual economic growth rate of 10 percent over the past 15 years, the country presents a unique opportunity.
Currently preventing it from joining the global map of successful economies are several challenges: a low per-capital GDP of under $800 per year, poor internet, and smartphone penetration, mainly due to the largely rural population and the government monopoly on the telecommunications market. In this section, we have compiled the reasons to study in Ethiopia as an expat. Check it out below.
1. Rich and Friendly Culture
As an expat, you’ll have the opportunity to explore the historical background of this country. And for the fact that Ethiopia is a multi-cultural and multi-ethnic country with a beautiful and rich culture, it’s a better place to visit. In fact, nearly half of the population belongs to the Ethiopian Orthodox Church, but there’s also a large Muslim population in the country.
2. Home to Beautiful Landscape
As we’ve discussed in our previous post about living in Ethiopia as an expat, you’ll see that we mentioned the beautiful landscape expats could enjoy in this country. In no doubt, Ethiopia offers some of the most extraordinary landscapes anywhere in Africa. From the jagged peaks of the Simien Mountains, the kaleidoscopic acid springs of the Danakil Depress, or the thick afro-alpine forests of the Bale, you’ll surely find where to go.
Aside from this fact, there are a lot of beautiful, natural, and wonder spots, recreation centers, and national parks where you can chill out after a hectic lecture day.
3. Wide Range of International Recognized Courses
It’s only in this country that you’ll see some of the best international schools in Africa. Also, aspiring students who intend to study in this country would have a lot of courses to make a pick from. Besides, some of the courses offered in Ethiopian tertiary institutions have gained a lot of international recognition over the years. This way, we can tell you that it’s one of the best in today’s digital world.
4. Standard and Quality Educational System
Since quality and sound education is what we all look to get, Ethiopia maintains a standard educational system with well-trained, competent, and qualified teachers. However, the standards of learning in the country have international recognition. So, be rest assured of its quality when you’re traveling.
5. Ethiopia Schools has a Safe and Creative Environment
When compared to other African countries, Ethiopia is indeed a very safe country. In fact, the rate of serious or violent crime is remarkably low. Not only is that, but the rate for petty crime drops still further. In this case, we will advise you to disguise as if you know where you’re going.
6. Easy Visa Application Process
Unlike advanced and developed countries, acquiring a visa to Ethiopia is relatively easy and affordable. For example, the average tuition for an undergraduate degree at the Addis Ababa University for an international student is about $190 (depending on your course, while for a postgraduate student is $6650.
Best International Schools in Ethiopia (2021)
As of today, we can tell you that international schools are top-rated in Ethiopia. In that case, finding the right one for your child is one of the major concerns for many international families when relocating to a new country. Not to worry, we’ve got you covered in this article. Without further ado, let’s quickly walk you through the best international schools in the country as of 2021.
1. Sandford International School
This is one of the best international schools in Ethiopia. As of today, this school fits both British and Ethiopian interests as an English-language school for international students. Their section is divided into three, and it includes; the primary school from nursery to year 6, the secondary school from year 7 to year 13, and the adult evening school. Also, these schools work closely with various offices, including the ministry of education, the ministry of labor, and many others, to mention a few.
2. International Community School of Addis Ababa (ICSAA)
This is the second international schools on our list. The uses the U.S curriculum, students are taught in the English language, and they also have college preparatory school from pre-kindergarten to Grade 12. Meanwhile, French and Spanish are taught as foreign languages. Also, this school is fully accredited in the U.S. by the MSA, and it provides the IB diploma program to interested students.
3. One Planet International School
One planet international schools is another place to take into consideration. They offer nursery (age 2-3), lower kindergarten (age 3-4), upper kindergarten (age 4-5), and preparatory (age 5-6). The Ethiopian Ministry of Education accredits this school, and they use a US-based curriculum with English and Amharic languages for instructions. But before you enroll in this school, ensure you enquire.
4. British International School Ethiopia (BIS)
The British International School, Secondary Section occupies The Sheriff building on the Bole Ring Road, which is about five minutes drive from Addis Ababa. That being said, BIS has a kindergarten and primary sections that are conveniently situated in Gerji, also near the airport. Moreover, some of their school community includes students from more than 54 countries of the world, with a minimum age of about three years and above.
5. Andinet International School (AIS)
This co-educational primary, middle, and high school from nursery through grade ten (with plans to expand). In this school, international English is the language of instruction, and Amharic, French, and Arabic are offered beginning in the children early school. Aside from this fact, AIS works closely with the Ethiopia ministry of education, and they prepare the students for the national exam.
6. Bingham Academy
As of today’s digital world, the Bingham school has improved by giving its students the quality education they need to stand out. Not only is that, but they also provide quality Christian education within a multicultural community, developing students of integrity who can change the world for God’s glory. The school goal is to provide excellent education for their student, prepare them with the skills necessary to successfully transition to the next stage of life in higher levels or a new workplace.
7. Lycee Guebre-Mariam
The lycee Guebre-Mariam has also made it to the list. The school was founded by the French Lay Mission in 1947, and it is a Franco-Ethiopian institution with French instruction. Not only is that, but this school is approved for pre-kindergarten to graduation by the French Ministry of National Education, and the AEFE subsidizes it. So, you can consider this school if you genuinely want a life-changing impact on your children.
8. German School in Addis Ababa
The German school in Addis Ababa has an approved German curriculum, and it’s known as one of the oldest German schools in Africa. Aside from this fact, it is funded and staffed by the Federal Republic of Germany. That being said, you can enroll your children here to learn more about history, languages, and other career choices you love.
9. Zagol Academy
This school has ranked as one of the best schools in this country. At Zagol academy, they are dedicated to providing their students with the highest level of education. Aside from this fact, their mission is to give opportunities for students to achieve their personal best, become responsible and productive citizens, and later embrace lifelong learning in a safe and positive environment.
10. Bingham Academy
The Bingham Academy strives to provide an outstanding education that fosters the student’s spiritual, academic, and physical development in a caring environment that emphasizes the importance of service. Meanwhile, they seek to equip each student with the necessary skills to succeed and thrive in an ever-changing world and impact the world for God’s glory.
Additionally, we can tell you that the school also offers an exciting opportunity to be involved in a key ministry in Ethiopia and whose impact can reach much further. Moreover, their teaching staffs come from over eight different nationalities and are committed to working as a team to ensure all their students receive a quality Christian education.
11. Lideta Catholic Cathedral School
This school also ranks among the best international schools in Ethiopia. They provide a nurturing learning environment that inspires every child to reach their full potential. It is also a primary and secondary school located in Addis Ababa.
In addition, the school is known to be a center of excellence that exists to provide an enabling environment that emphasizes leadership, sciences, and services via an integrated curriculum in a bid to prepare its community of learners for participation in a global economy.
Types of Visas Available for Expats in Ethiopia
If you want to visit this country for whatsoever reason, it’s quite essential to know the types of visas available for you. However, the Ethiopian government has made the process of obtaining an Ethiopian visa smoother and easier with the introduction of the Ethiopia eVisa as well as the visa on arrival.
In this section, we will walk you through the types of visas available for expats that want to relocate or travel to Ethiopia for whatever reasons. However, if you have a diplomatic or service passport issued by any country other than Pakistan or Somalia, you may enter the country without a visa. Below are the two main types of visas that the Ethiopian government issues.
● Ethiopia Tourist Visas
The Ethiopia tourist visas are issued to foreign nationals traveling to Ethiopia for tourism or other non-business-related purposes. Meanwhile, this visa can be issued either at the embassy or consulate of Ethiopia, on arrival, or online, depending on the expats nationality.
● Ethiopia Business Visas
Ethiopia business visa is the second option. As the name suggests, this kind of visa is given or issued for business-related purposes and can be further subdivided into the following;
● Ethiopia conference visa (CV)
This type of visa is issued to foreigners traveling to attend an international conference, seminar, or workshop in Ethiopia that’s organized by a ministry, governmental authority, private organization, or educational institution.
● Ethiopia Government Employment Visa (GV)
This type of business visa is issued to foreigners who will work in the Ethiopian government institutions or ministries.
● Ethiopia Private Business Firm Work Visa (PE)
This is another type of business visa issued to a foreigner who will work short-term in an Ethiopian private business enterprise.
● Ethiopian Government Institutions Short Task Visa (GIV)
This type of visa is issued to foreign nationals who will work in a government institution in Ethiopia for a short period.
In addition, there are many other types of business visas, depending on your purpose of travel. If your purpose of travel is for a reason other than the ones mentioned above, you should contact an Ethiopian embassy or consulate around.
Requirements for Ethiopia Visa as of 2021
If you want to enroll for any of the visas available for expats in Ethiopia, you need to check the requirements below.
- You need a valid passport for at least six more months beyond the date you intend to leave and has at least two blank pages
- When you apply online, you need a scanned picture of the personal information page of your new passport
- Your passport should be at least have a picture size of 35x45mm and with a white background). However, if you attach the picture electronically, ensure that it must be in JPEG, JPG, PNG, BMP, or GIF format with a maximum size of 2MB.
Addition Documents for Ethiopia Business Visa
- A letter of application from the inviting company addressed to the Main Department for Immigration and Nationality Affairs of Ethiopia
- You must present the inviting company’s TIN Certificate (Taxpayer Identification Number) and the attractive company’s business license
- Proof of contact between you and the inviting company
- A support letter from the Ethiopian ministry of foreign affairs or government communications office.
Moving To the Country for Study Purpose
Moving to Ethiopia to study is relatively easy today. One of the things you need to do is get an Ethiopian visa from an Ethiopian embassy or consulate in your home country or a neighboring country. In addition to the visa, upon arrival to the country, you must get a residence permit from the Ministry of Immigration and the Ministry of Labor and Social Affairs (MOLSA) within 30 days. Without further ado, let’s quickly walk you through the tips to relocate or move to Ethiopia in today’s world.
a) Ensure you get your e-Visa in Advance
With new technology comes the need for change and innovation; it is now easier than ever to plan your following study or vacation with the introduction of an electronic visa. More so, citizens of every country in the world can apply for a permit to Ethiopia online, which serves as their permission to enter the country.
b) Prepare for the Weather
Always have it in mind while traveling to this country that Ethiopians are very accustomed to the harsh climate in their country. And this means that it will be one of your greatest challenges. This way, you must pack for hot days and freezing nights when you visit this exotic landmass.
c) Be Prepared for a Bad Connection (Wi-Fi)
It’s no doubt that this could cause a great problem as a student in the country. Therefore, if you’re coming to this country for the first time, prepare for a bad Wi-Fi connection. In this case, you’ll have to rely on people around you or maps on paper if you want directions. On the other hand, it could also lead to some amazing conversations with locals.
d) Only Bottled Water is Safe
This is another thing to put into consideration while relocating to this country as an expat. Always avoid drinking other water apart from the bottled ones. And this is because; there may be diseases like cholera or typhoid fever present in the water supply because of poor sanitation facilities and unsafe drinking. Meanwhile, if you’re going to have fun together with the locals, do it responsibly.
e) Ensure you Vaccinate before Trip
Of course, you need to vaccinate before you travel. And for the fact that COVI-19 made it possible for everyone to perform the COVID-19 test, you need to undergo the same process while you’re traveling to Ethiopia. In fact, you should consider taking a total dose of the vaccination before going to the country.
Frequently Asked Questions about Ethiopia International Schools
Is Ethiopia’s education system sound?
Well, since we all know that Ethiopia is a developing nation, it has made remarkable progress in education. With the primary school net enrolment tripling between 2000 and 2019 to the current 100 percent, we can tell you that Ethiopia’s education system is sound.
As children and young people comprise 48 percent of the population, the country can still lift itself out of poverty by ensuring children have access to education.
Can girls go to school in Ethiopia?
Still, Ethiopia girls struggle to access free, safe, quality education, and only 25 percent of them attend secondary school. Even when in school, girls face abuse and sexual violence within the school environment. Therefore, they go to school, but you hardly see many of them in high school.
Is school free in Ethiopia?
As of today, we can tell you that public education is free at the primary, secondary, and tertiary levels. That being mentioned, primary education is offered for eight years and is compulsory between ages 7 and 12. Therefore, if you’re within this age range, you can get a free education while living in the country.
How many international schools do we have in Ethiopia?
As reteach made it known, there are over ten international schools in Ethiopia. Most of these schools offer extracurricular activities and impart knowledge to their students regardless of their background. This, in the long run, will make them beneficial to life, their community, and the world at large.
At what age does school start in Ethiopia?
In Ethiopia, the academic year runs from September to July, and education is free at the primary level. Also, students enter school at age seven, and compulsory education lasts for six years and ends at age 12. Meanwhile, about 32 percent of children of the official primary school ages are out of school.
While you may want to study in the best international schools in Ethiopia, you need to understand the process and all it takes to enter the country. Ethiopia has one of the best schools in Africa. In that case, check the tips and the best schools from the list we mentioned above to get the full details.