If you’re looking for a quality education for your children, we bring to you the best high schools in South Africa for boys and girls in 2023.
No one can deny the fact that selecting a high school is a decision that carries weight. These years not only offer the pathway to higher education but also contribute to shaping the individuals students grow into. With this in mind, it is imperative to make a well-informed choice.
South Africa is renowned for its exceptional educational institutions, and high schools are no exception. In fact, we’ve written about the best online schools in South Africa.
From schools known for their academic rigour to those celebrated for their extracurricular programmes, South Africa boasts an array of high schools each with its unique strengths. Education in South Africa has come a long way.
The year 2023 is not an exception as we continue to see these schools provide top-tier education, nurture talents, and raise leaders of tomorrow.
We’ve taken on the challenging task of narrowing down this impressive field to the top 20 high schools in South Africa for 2023.
The Importance of Selecting the Best High School in South Africa
Choosing the right high school for a child is one of the most significant decisions parents make for their children’s future. The high school years are pivotal for several reasons. This period shapes a child’s intellectual, physical, emotional, and social development. Furthermore, it is a stepping stone to tertiary education and future career paths. So, why is selecting the right high school in South Africa so important? Let’s delve into the details.
Firstly, the right high school provides an environment conducive to the child’s academic success. South Africa boasts numerous schools, each with its unique academic programs and teaching methodologies. Some are more geared towards scientific pursuits, while others focus on humanities or arts. A high school should match a student’s learning style and interests to foster their intellectual growth and academic success.
Secondly, a well-suited high school encourages a child’s personal development. High school is a crucial phase in the formation of personal identity, values, and character. Schools offering a balance of academics, sports, arts, and community involvement help in molding well-rounded individuals. South African schools are known for their diverse offerings in co-curricular activities. Hence, selecting a high school that caters to a child’s talents and interests is vital for their overall development.
Thirdly, the right high school cultivates important life skills. These include critical thinking, problem-solving, communication, teamwork, and leadership. Schools that provide a supportive and challenging environment encourage the development of these skills. As such, choosing a high school that prioritizes skill development prepares students for the challenges of the 21st-century world.
Lastly, high school plays a critical role in shaping a student’s social life. It is where lifelong friendships are forged and valuable connections are made. The right school will provide a nurturing and inclusive community that values diversity and fosters respect for all.
Top 20 Best High Schools In South Africa
The schools on this list have excelled in providing quality education, fostering personal development, and preparing students for a successful future. So, let’s dive into each of these schools and explore what they have to offer.
1. Orban School
School Fee: R14,500
Our list of the best high schools in South Africa begins With Orban School in Johannesburg, a capital city of one of the 9 provinces in South Africa.
This gem offers a vibrant, bilingual (English and Afrikaans) education for learners from pre-primary up to grade 7. They maintain smaller class sizes to ensure that each child receives individual attention, and their curriculum, rich in arts, provides a creative outlet to the young innovators and creators of tomorrow.
2. Spark Schools
School Fee: R28,050
Next up, we have the Spark Schools network—pioneers in delivering a unique blended learning model that combines traditional teaching with modern technology. With campuses across the country, Spark is committed to providing accessible, top-quality education to all. Beyond academic excellence, they focus heavily on character development and community engagement—a truly holistic approach to education.
Related: Top 20 Hardest Degrees in the World
3. Assumption Convent School
School Fee: R120,000
Our list of the best best high schools in South Africa continues in Germiston at the Assumption Convent School. This all-girls Catholic institution provides quality education from grade 000 right through to matric. It has a nurturing environment where students are encouraged to grow spiritually, academically, and personally. The school’s dedicated educators guide students towards achieving their full potential.
4. The Ridge School
School Fee: R140,000
Nestled in the suburb of Westcliff, Johannesburg, The Ridge School is a leading independent preparatory school for boys. Its vast, picturesque campus provides a serene environment for the holistic development of students. The school focuses on critical thinking, leadership skills, and a solid foundation in key academic areas.
5. Roedean School
School Fee: R91,000
In the leafy suburb of Parktown, Johannesburg, we find Roedean School, a prestigious all-girls’ school renowned for its commitment to academic excellence, co-curricular activities, and leadership development. The school’s impressive alumnae, spanning over a century, is a testament to the quality of education Roedean offers.
6. St John’s College, Johannesburg
School Fee: R67,251
Next on our list of the best high schools in South Africa is St John’s College, a private boys’ school in Houghton, Johannesburg. Offering a world-class, holistic education, St John’s is known for its rigorous academic program, thriving co-curricular activities, and a nurturing environment that shapes boys into young men of character.
7. Johannesburg Muslim School
School Fee: R5,000
The Johannesburg Muslim School, an independent school based on Islamic principles, offers high-quality education from Grade 0 to Grade 12. It seamlessly blends secular academics with Islamic teachings to create a balanced learning environment that fosters academic achievement and spiritual growth.
8. Reddam House
School Fee: R72,500
Reddam House, part of the international Inspired network, is a co-educational, independent school that fosters academic, sporting, and cultural excellence. Known for its innovative, child-centred teaching methods, Reddam House places a strong emphasis on individual growth and achievement.
9. Saint Stithians College
School Fee: R120,000
Now let’s turn our attention to Saint Stotjoams College. This institution prides itself on its robust academic programme, complemented by a rich offering of co-curricular activities. Students are empowered to strive for excellence in a nurturing, supportive environment.
10. Kingswood College
School Fee: R120,000
Next on the list of the the best high schools in South Africa is Kingswood College. Located in the heart of Grahamstown, Kingswood College is an independent co-educational school with a rich heritage. It offers a balanced educational experience that incorporates academics, sport, culture, and spiritual development, preparing students for life beyond school.
11. Radford House
Radford House in Fairland, Johannesburg, is a dynamic, progressive school that offers education for children from Grade R to 7. With a commitment to small class sizes, the school ensures personalized attention, promoting excellence in academic, sporting, and cultural spheres.
12. Roseway Waldorf School
Roseway Waldorf School, located in the picturesque Alverstone, promotes a unique, holistic educational philosophy based on Rudolf Steiner’s Waldorf model. Here, education extends beyond academic learning to include artistic, practical, and social skills, fostering balanced human development.
13. Thodor Herz School
Thodor Herz School in Johannesburg is next on our list of the best high schools in South Africa. It is a Jewish Day School that provides students with a strong foundation in both secular and Jewish studies. Their goal is to shape students into global citizens who possess a strong Jewish identity, are intellectually curious, and exhibit moral character.
14. Alexander Road High School
Based in Port Elizabeth, Alexander Road High School has a proud legacy of providing quality education. The school’s nurturing environment promotes academic achievement, cultural engagement, and sports involvement, fostering well-rounded individuals ready to make their mark in the world.
15. American International School Cape Town
The American International School Cape Town offers an American curriculum with an international perspective. The school’s rich, culturally diverse community, and rigorous curriculum provide students with a globally-minded education, equipping them for an increasingly interconnected world.
16. Anchorlite College
Anchorlite College is worthy of mention on this list of the top 20 best high schools in South Africa. It is an independent school based in Phoenix, Durban. The school is dedicated to nurturing students into responsible, confident individuals through a strong academic program, complemented by various sporting and cultural activities.
17. Athlone Girls High School
Located in Observatory, Johannesburg, Athlone Girls High School is an institution steeped in tradition and values. It offers a diverse curriculum designed to empower young women with the skills, knowledge, and confidence to succeed in a rapidly changing world.
18. Blue Hills College
Blue Hills College, located in Midrand, Johannesburg, is an independent school known for its balanced approach to education. This co-educational school offers an environment that promotes academic excellence, and moral and spiritual growth, fostering well-rounded individuals.
19. Brettonwood High School
Brettonwood High School, located in Umbilo, Durban, has a long-standing tradition of providing quality education that caters to the unique abilities and interests of each learner. The school strives to create a stimulating environment that encourages learning and personal development.
20. Clifton School
We conclude our journey in Durban with Clifton School. This independent boys’ day school is known for its strong academic programme, co-curricular activities, and an ethos of respect and care. Clifton aims to cultivate boys into men who are respectful, resilient, and ready to contribute positively to society.
Best High Schools In South Africa (Summary)
South Africa’s educational landscape for 2023 continues to impress with an array of top-tier high schools each offering unique strengths. This rich diversity of institutions provides excellent choices for students and parents alike, presenting a blend of academic excellence, co-curricular dynamism, and holistic student development. From Orban School’s strong arts-centric, bilingual curriculum in Johannesburg to Spark School’s innovative technology-infused learning approach, the quality of high school education in South Africa remains exceptional.
A range of other high schools like the Assumption Convent School and St John’s College in Johannesburg underscore the importance of a values-based education coupled with rigorous academic programmes. Simultaneously, schools such as the Roedean School and Johannesburg Muslim School highlight the significance of all-round development, nurturing students’ intellectual, physical, and spiritual growth. Furthermore, the American International School Cape Town and Blue Hills College offer distinctive educational experiences, emphasizing cultural diversity and a globally relevant curriculum.
In essence, the best high schools in South Africa for 2023 are those that place the student at the heart of their educational journey, offering an inclusive and enriching learning environment. These schools encourage students to explore their interests, nurture their talents, and prepare them for the challenges of the future. Whether it’s a strong academic focus, a commitment to co-curricular activities, or the cultivation of personal development, these schools stand out as leaders in providing top-quality high school education.