Education in South Africa may be divided into three types of schools. Public schools are free and are run by the government; private schools are usually fee-paying.
But maybe state-subsidized and have to meet certain requirements to gain this status, and special schools cater to the needs of students with learning disabilities or who are especially gifted in certain areas.
There are many high schools in South Africa, and you may be wondering how to find the right one for your child. Choosing where to send your child to school can be one of the most important decisions you’ll make as a parent, and it’s one you shouldn’t take lightly.
The best high schools in South Africa are found all over the country, and many factors go into choosing the right school for your child.
These top 10 best schools in South Africa provide both an excellent education and a vibrant community for your teen to thrive in throughout his or her high school years.
So, if you’re ready to choose the perfect high school for your kid, here are the best high schools in South Africa.
Related: 10 Best High Schools In Pretoria
How to Choose the Best High School in South Africa?
The most important thing to consider when choosing a high school in South Africa is your child’s plans. If they want to pursue higher education, what type of university do they want to attend?
What courses are offered by local universities and colleges? How good are these courses and how well are they likely to prepare them for their studies?
How much extra work will your child have to put in to achieve top grades? All of these questions should be considered before you decide on a high school.
Of course, other considerations include safety, extracurricular activities, after-school care, and many more; however, if your child has set academic goals then it can help narrow down your options and make finding suitable schools much easier.
Top 10 High Schools in South Africa
No doubt getting a good education at high school can help shape a person’s future. Considering there are over 200+ high schools spread across South Africa, choosing which ones to attend can be difficult.
To help narrow down your search, we have compiled a list of top high schools across South Africa.
10. Hoërrskool Linden
This amazing school is situated in Linden and they have a very high rating on every scale.
With their impressive libraries, lush green grounds, and top-of-the-range equipment, their prospects for their learners are truly endless. What makes it so exceptional is that its rate for passing exams is close to 100% making them one of our best high schools in South Africa.
Students are motivated by strong leadership from teachers and peers to perform well, hence there being no need for external motivation (like bonus points) which causes a lot of stress on other learners who can’t get passed because they have never memorized anything or read anything from outside of homework.
9. Inanda Seminary School
For a high school that gives you a true taste of South African culture, Inanda Seminary School is a wonderful choice. A Christian high school founded in 1869, it attracts students from all over the world—the vast majority of whom are black Africans.
The results speak for themselves; graduating students typically have entry into some of South Africa’s best universities as well as scholarships to study abroad (UCLA and Oxford are just two examples). Some alumni even go on to become successful artists and musicians.
With around 1,000 students and a 15:1 student-teacher ratio, Inanda Seminary School is one of South Africa’s most diverse yet academically impressive schools. It’s no wonder that many famous figures send their children here.
8. Westville Girls High School
The first girl’s high school to be established by an Act of Parliament. The Westville Girls’ High School has been a focal point for female education in KwaZulu-Natal for decades now.
This esteemed, all-girls school is located in KwaZulu-Natal. Despite its academic excellence and rigorous standards, Westville Girls consistently ranks as one of South Africa’s most accepting and nurturing schools.
Students report being prepared for a successful future without being crushed by the pressure. Graduates have gone on to study at Oxford University, Stanford University, Vanderbilt University, and Yale University among others.
The sports program at Westville girls is known to be exceptional; Westville girls have produced 13 national champions across several sports over recent years.
7. Collegiate Girls’ High School
A high-achieving girls’ school located in Parsons Hill, Gqeberha, Collegiate is known for its academic prowess and arts and culture program.
The school has a long history of excellent performance on national assessments, along with a very diverse student body from all over Gqeberha.
It’s also an academic powerhouse—Collegiate is one of few schools in South Africa to boast a 100% matric pass rate.
When it comes to extracurriculars, Collegiate offers an impressive selection of courses and activities, including several excellent sports teams like its very successful netball team.
6. Sama High School
This comprehensive, government-funded school is located in Johannesburg that’s known for its culture of academic excellence.
The school boasts both a perfect pass rate and a 100% matriculation rate. Sama students also perform well on university placement exams; 42% get into their first choice of university, making it one of the best high schools in South Africa.
Teachers at Sama are also notable for their dedication to student success. If a student does not have money for lunch, for example, a teacher will step forward to pay for it out of pocket—an example of just how passionate faculty members are about making sure their students succeed.
5. Holy Family College
This is a private Catholic school, but it’s incredibly affordable. Students at Holy Family College receive a top-notch education and have access to numerous extracurricular activities.
If you want to take AP classes and are looking for a school that will give you an international education without spending thousands of dollars per year, then look no further.
This high school offers students everything they need to succeed academically and socially.
The diversity of courses at Holy Family College makes it perfect for any student who wants to branch out of their comfort zone while exploring other cultures and ideas.
It may not be one of South Africa’s most well-known high schools, but what it lacks in notoriety it makes up for with stellar academics at an affordable price.
4. Inkamana High School
Inkamana is a public school located in Vryheid, Kwazulu Natal, South Africa. The school was founded in 1923 and over 200 students are currently enrolled at Inkamana.
The school’s quality of education has earned it a lot of media attention, and more than 150 schools nationwide have modeled their structures after Inkamana’s system.
It is recognized for having an extremely impressive computer lab that is constantly updated with new computers, along with excellent sports facilities that are always maintained to a high standard.
These facilities include two swimming pools, five football fields, three hockey fields, and numerous tennis courts, squash courts, and cricket nets.
3. Al-Falaah College
A world-class high school, with high-quality education and innovative teaching techniques. By giving students individual attention during their time there.
If you’re looking for top schools in Durban, look no further than Al-Falaah College. With only a 30% acceptance rate, it is among one of the top-rated schools in the city of Durban, in KwaZulu-Natal.
The school’s buildings are spacious and beautifully landscaped. This institution takes pride in being both non-racial and democratic.
It has three computer labs as well as its printing press, open to all learners for any projects or activities that may require printouts. The sports facilities are excellent and well kept, with indoor soccer fields available for use.
2. Star College Capetown
This is one of The best schools in Capetown. Their reputation, tuition, and test scores are all incredible. What’s even better is that they have an amazing early college program that lets qualified students graduate high school a year early (and save some cash).
If you are looking for something more than just a normal high school education then look no further than Star College Capetown. They will do whatever it takes to make sure their student succeed.
I suggest starting with a tour of their campus; it’s like nothing else I’ve ever seen before. It would be quite easy to get lost in their beautiful facility but don’t let it distract you from your focus on your future success!
1. Afrikaanse Hoër Mesleskool
This Afrikaans-speaking girls’ high school in Pretoria was the top-performing school. It was the first Afrikaans-speaking school, founded in 1920, at a period when Afrikaans was not the official language. Later, another structure was built to divide the males and girls.
This school is known for good performance by its learners and has featured in several top schools’ lists and magazines.
There are many extracurricular activities available to learners at AFHMS Girls school including art, chess, netball, and theatre which all help with the development of their skills when they join mainstream schooling upon leaving secondary education.
There is also an astroturf where learners play soccer at lunchtime or after classes.