The International School of Helsingborg (ISH) is a registered institution with the Swedish School Inspectorate that provides early-to-secondary education for students ages 2 to 19 using the International Baccalaureate (IB) curriculum in English.

Our school is organised based on the IB framework and divided into five main programmes:

  • Pre-Early Years (Pre-EY) – preschool for children that are two years old
  • Early Years (EY) – preschool for children ages 3–5
  • Primary Years Programme (PYP) – primary education for children ages 6–12
  • Middle Years Programme (MYP) – upper primary and lower secondary education for children ages 11–16
  • Diploma Programme – upper secondary education (gymnasium) for students ages 16–19

ISH does not offer modified education programmes or provide any type of special education.

Swedish school requirements and curriculum

Sweden legally requires all children between the ages of 6 and 16 to attend school. Our PYP and MYP classes satisfy the legal conditions of Sweden’s compulsory education (grundskola). Yet, in accordance with Swedish regulations for international schools – Förordning (2015:801) om internationella skolor, Chapters 5 and 6 – ISH only teaches and assesses PYP and MYP students in regards to the IB curriculum. ISH does not teach Sweden’s curriculum nor use the Swedish grading system. We do, however, teach our students the Swedish language. If a student is proficient enough in Swedish (e.g. well beyond the beginner level), they’re taught in accordance with Sweden’s curriculum for the language and are awarded grades in line with that curriculum from year 1 to year 4 of the Middle Years Programme (MYP1–MYP4).

Eligibility to attend the International School of Helsingborg

ISH is funded by the city of Helsingborg and was created to provide early-to-secondary education for the local international community. Although we’re a tuition-free school, students and their families must meet specific criteria established by the Swedish Education Act in order to attend ISH.
In Sweden, students with special education needs – including those with visual, hearing, or language impairments that necessitate assistance – attend a specific school system (specialskolan) that ensures they receive the help they require. Thus, as per the Swedish Education Act (Chapter 7 §§5 and 6), an international school like ISH does not have the resources to accommodate such a student.

Criteria for admission of students ages 2 to 16

Applications to ISH’s preschool programmes (Pre-EY and EY) and education programmes in compliance with Sweden’s compulsory education (PYP and MYP) must meet specific criteria set by the Swedish Education Act (Chapter 24 §4) for admission.

Students between the ages of 2 and 16 who attend ISH must be any of the following:

  1. Children of international families moving to Helsingborg and staying here for a limited time.
  2. Students who have attended an international school abroad for the majority of their education and, therefore, have a reason to continue at an international school.
  3. Students currently living in Helsingborg but will be attending an international school abroad in one school year or less. These are, for example, children whose parents have jobs that require frequent moving or plans to move in the near future.
  4. Students permanently living in Helsingborg who speak English as their mother tongue (e.g., using it on a daily basis with one or both parents/guardians) AND are proficient enough to follow along and participate in lessons taught in English.

Due to the high number of applications and limited spaces, ISH currently prioritises admission of students that meet criteria points 1 and 2 for certain programme classes. Admission of applications that meet criteria points 3 and 4 depends on the availability of space in a programme class.

Additional requirements for attending ISH:

  • Parents of children ages 3–5 who are applying for them to attend the EY programme must ensure the child is diaper-free and able to use the bathroom on their own.
  • Students who reside outside of Helsingborg can attend ISH. They must reside in a municipality that’s part of the collaboration agreement between the city of Helsingborg and municipalities in the northwestern part of the Skåne region. Their application and attendance must also be handled in accordance with the criteria of the collaboration agreement.
  • When available spots are limited in ISH programmes, priority will be given to applications for students and families living within the Helsingborg municipality over those living outside of it.

Applying to ISH’s Diploma Programme for students ages 16–19

Our Diploma Programme is for students who’ve moved beyond Sweden’s compulsory education (grundskola) and are continuing into secondary education (gymnasium). It’s specifically designed to provide a foundation for attending university either in Sweden or abroad and uses the IB Diploma Programme framework.

There are many different ways to apply, depending on the applicant.

  • Students currently in grade 9 of the Swedish school system can apply to ISH through Skånegy, the official web portal for secondary education programs in Skåne and western Blekinge, using their account login information that was given to them by their school guidance counsellor (SYV).
  • Students who are from Sweden and applying from another country can send their full name, current address, and Swedish personal identity number (personnummer) to Gymnasieantagningen by email, and they will then send them their account login information to apply through the Skånegy web portal.
  • Students from other countries who do not yet have a Swedish personal identity number can begin applying through the ISH online application system. However, they must obtain a Swedish personal identity number and prove that they have the right to live and study in Sweden before they can be offered admission to ISH.
  • ISH students currently in the fourth year of the Middle Years Program (MYP4) should discuss with their guidance counsellor about the best way for them to apply to ISH’s Diploma Programme.

All applicants (including MYP4 students at ISH) will be invited to take the entrance exams in mathematics and English, which are during the spring term before August enrollment. Exams are conducted in March, as well as in May and August for late applicants.

The application process also requires an interview with ISH representatives.

Ready to apply to ISH?

You can apply for all our programmes through the ISH online application system.