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Private Schools In Barbados: An Expat Guide

Barbados is a beautiful holiday destination, but have you ever considered moving there? While the small island nation is densely populated (its the 18th most populated country in the world, in fact) it is not hugely popular with expats. That’s not to say that you can’t find life hugely satisfying in Barbados if you’re planning on relocating there, but you may struggle to find some of the information you’re looking for.One of the most frequently asked questions when it comes to emigrating is that of education, and in particular, international private schools. These are often the best choice for offspring of expats, as they mean children can move seamlessly from any country and school to another without missing out on their education. Many international schools follow a world-wide curriculum or at least offer that option. This consistency will help your children transition smoothly and keep on top of their studies.

In this guide, we take a look at private schools in Barbados and touch on anything you may need to know, as well as listing some of the most popular and reputable private schools on the island.


Barbados has a relatively small number of private schools. There are some 15 private secondary schools and seven senior schools in addition to a handful of private nurseries for preschool aged children. Most migrants tend to look for schools that teach a global curriculum such as the International Baccalaureate (IB). This largely depends on whether your child has already attended previous international schools in other countries and/or how long you are planning to stay in Barbados.

If your child has not started school yet or not studied on an international curriculum, and you’re planning on remaining in Barbados until they finish education, then this isn’t such a critical factor as it may be for others.

Admissions And Entrance Exams

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Admission requirements vary from school to school. In general, children will be required to sit an entrance exam. In Barbados, children take their common entrance exams at age 11 to qualify for secondary school. This may be something to consider if your child will be joining school in Barbados around this age.

International Private Schools In Barbados

Here are some of the most reputable private international schools in Barbados.

Wills Primary School (Christ Church)
Tuition rates: $1,980-2,730 per term
Covering elementary and secondary school, lessons taught in English and curriculum based on local standards.

Dottins Academy (DA) (Navy Gardens)
Tuition rates: $2,284-4,100 per term
Covering secondary school education for boys only. Students are prepared for certification in the Caribbean Examinations Council (CXC) examinations.

Providence Elementary School (St. George)
Tuition rates: Enquire at school
Covering both elementary and secondary school years, lessons taught in English and curriculum based on local standards.

Codrington School (St. John)
Tuition rates: BBD $7,630-44,000 per year, with discounts available for local students.
IB World School, offering the Primary Years, Middle Years and Diploma programmes. Lessons taught in English with additional Spanish classes from age seven. Older children can also opt to take French in addition to Spanish. The school is accredited with CoIS and ECIS.

Lockerbie College: the Cambridge International School Barbados (St. Michael)
Tuition rates: $14,500USD per year
Lockerbie is the only Cambridge International School in Barbados. They accept students ages eight to 18. They offer a varied curriculum based on the programmes of Barbados, US, UK, Canadian and the IB.

St. Winifred's School (St. Michael)
Tuition rates: Enquire at school
International co-ed school offering primary education (three to seven), as well as junior years (seven to 11) and seniors (11 to 17). They follow the Barbados Government schools’ curriculum.

St. Gabriel's School (St. Michael)
Tuition rates: Enquire at school
A co-ed Anglican school which includes a nursery (ages three to four), infant years (ages four to seven), and a junior education (ages seven to 11). Children of any religion may attend the school, but religious education forms part of the curriculum and the principles of Christianity are prominent. Education is based on the Barbados Government schools’ curriculum.

Ursuline Convent (St. Michael)
Tuition rates: $2,284-4,100 per term
Educates ages three to 16, boys and girls. For the junior department, children can prepare for the Barbados Secondary Schools’ Entrance Examination (BSSEE or common entrance) at age 11. Senior girls study for the Caribbean Examinations (CSEC).

Alexandra School (St. Peter)
Tuition rates: Enquire at school
Students are prepared for the Caribbean Examinations Council Examination, as well as the Royal School of Music. Lessons taught in English but students may also learn Spanish and/or French in addition to the rest of the curriculum.

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