Those seeking an education for themselves or their children in Stavanger need not worry: Norway as a whole has one of the best educated populations, with the highest rates of literacy and adult education in the world. Stavanger, with its cosmopolitan population and status as an energy capital, is host to world experts in fields such as petroleum and engineering, and as a result is at the very forefront of educational opportunities – indeed its population has a significantly higher percentage of university education than the national average.
The International School of Stavanger
The International School of Stavanger (ISS), established in 1966, is accredited both by the New England Association of Schools and the Council of International Schools. There are today around 680 students from ages 3 to 18, with the largest represented nationalities being British, US, Norwegian, German, Canadian, Dutch, Polish and Italian. There is, Antarctica aside, not a continent on earth left unrepresented at ISS. Typically, many families are connected to international oil companies or the local NATO base.
In order to prepare students for a university education, the school blends elements of the North American and European systems, and offers both the IGCSE examinations, through the University of Cambridge in England, and the International Baccalaureate Diploma (IB). ISS graduates are accepted at the world’s most prestigious universities every year. The school’s staff, most of whom hold graduate degrees, come from all around the world to teach at ISS.
The International School is a well-recognized part of Stavanger’s skyline, with some of the city’s impressive facilities at its disposal. These include a 400 metre track and soccer/football, baseball, rugby and softball fields. Indoors, a gym, two libraries, multiple IT facilities and separate, equipped areas for art, music and drama are just a few examples of what the school has to offer. With the outdoor world important to ISS, trips are arranged regularly for all age groups taking advantage of Stavanger’s beautiful surroundings.
||Students rehearse in the International School of Stavanger’s impressive theatre, where drama and music are a key part of a wide range of activities for nearly 700 students of all ages. Photo: International School of Stavanger.
A City of Learning
Stavanger also has a British International School, which follows the United Kingdom national curriculum, and has a long tradition, dating back to its establishment in 1977. Those wishing a French language education for their children are also well served here: the Lycée Français de Stavanger has classes from kindergarten up to baccalaureate level.
Adults too have plenty of possibilities. Aside from one of Norway’s newest and fastest growing universities, the University of Stavanger, the School of Mission and Theology also boasts a number of courses in English, including fully accredited master’s degrees in Global Studies and Theology, doctoral programmes and bachelors degrees, and a cosmopolitan mix of international students.
Stavanger’s impressive library, located in the Stavanger Culture House, has a large collection and is renowned also for its comfort, style and family oriented focus. The same building also, rather appropriately, houses the Norwegian Children’s Museum.