The most expensive private schools in Europe - Spear's Magazine

The most expensive private schools in Europe

The most expensive private schools in Europe

From shaping royalty to pioneering holistic education, the world’s top private schools offer opulent facilities, trailblazing educational programmes and immersive travel experiences – at prices that reflect their prestige

A pathway into the best universities, elite private schools give privileged children access to unparalleled educational and cultural experiences.

These institutions also come with an annual six-figure commitment for each child, often from the age of six to 18.

While Lake Geneva-based Le Rosey is often thought to be Europe’s most expensive private school, that title belongs to fellow Swiss Institut auf dem Rosenberg.

Based four hours away in St. Gallen, Rosenberg commands annual fees of up to $145,500 per pupil from its 230-strong student base.

All of Europe’s five most expensive private schools are located in Switzerland – here’s a rundown of what they offer for their substantial fees.

1. Institut Auf Dem Rosenberg – $145,500

Only 230 students attend Institut auf dem Rosenberg, which keeps class sized to around eight. Image: Institut auf dem Rosenberg

A pioneer of holistic learning with average class sizes of eight, Rosenberg describes its staff as ‘artisans of education’.

It opened in 1889 and has been owned and run by the Gademann Family for four generations.

The school is focused on the principles of holistic education and meeting its students’ emotional, social, ethical and academic needs.

Image: @instrosenberg on Instagram

Rosenberg’s educational approach pays off in its results. Students achieved the highest GCSE marks in the whole of Switzerland in May 2022.

Fees: Boarding fees reach a maximum of $145,000 a year.

2. Institut Le Rosey, $137,250

One of the oldest boarding schools in Switzerland, Institut Le Rosey places a strong focus on languages and is known as the ‘school of kings’ for its high-profile royal alumni.

Crown Prince Alexander of Serbia and late monarchs Prince Rainier III of Monaco and King Farouk of Egypt are among notable Rosean heads of state.

As well as numerous royal scions passing through its doors, members of the Rockerfeller and Rothschild dynasties are among famous ex-pupils.

Outside of academia, Le Rosey has won 40 medals at the ADISR – the private schools sports league – and has excelled at ski competitions.

Musically, Le Rosey boasts three orchestras, two choirs and numerous musical ensembles, with instruments taught at a standard to prepare children for the Royal Academy of Music.

Theatre groups put on three multilingual performances a year and take trips to London and Paris to watch shows.

Fees: The minimum tuition is approximately $98,250 and the maximum is $137,250 per year, respectively for day fees and boarding fees.

3. Aiglon College, $129,546

Meditation is a part of daily life for students at the co-educational non-profit Aiglon College.

Founded by eccentric English architect and Gordonstoun teacher John Corlette in 1949, the school encourages self-awareness through unconventional practices.

Aiglon introduced the concept of mindfulness and meditation as ‘an indispensable tool’ for students aged five to 13.

Located in the Swiss Alps, extracurricular activities include ski trips and trekking.

Fees: Minimum costs start at $37,867 for younger day students and reach $129,546 for older boarders.

4. College Alpin International Beau Soleil, $130,000

Image: @collegebeausoleil on Instagram

One of the highest schools in the world – and that’s not just the fees – College Alpin International Beau Soleil stands 4,330 feet above sea level in Villars.

With only 280 students, aged 11 to 18, it’s also a reach to get into.

High-profile former pupils include Princess Marie of Denmark, Canadian racing driver Jaques Villeneuve and late racing commentator Sir Peter O’Sullivan.

Those lucky enough to gain entry are prepared for university life under founding director Madame Bluette Ferrier’s guiding principles of ‘respect, responsibility, ambition, and determination’.

The class of 2022 achieved a 100% pass rate on the International Baccalaureate and US High School Diploma.

Fees: Tuition rates start at around $120,500 for day teaching, reaching up to $130,000 for boarding.

5. Leysin American School – $108,619

The first residential school in Switzerland to offer the International Baccalaureate Program, Leysin American School is known for its exclusive activities.

Its Alpine Club offers ski lessons and trips to the Alps, while a programme called ‘Cultural Trips‘ gives students opportunities to explore destinations including Italy, Germany, Monaco and Spain.

With one staff member to every five of its 340 pupils, Leysin American School teaches grades seven to 12 with a focus on preparing students for university.

In the context of its elite Swiss counterparts, Leyson is a comparatively young school, opening in the Savoy Grand Hotel in 1961 with 89 pupils and 12 teachers.

But its true origins began in 1949 as the summer ‘Yank Campus’ for children of US military families.

Fees: Maximum fees are around $108,619.

For more information, visit the Spear’s 500 Schools Index

Main image credit: Iwan Baan

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