ISBerne was founded in Switzerland’s capitol city in Autumn 1961.

The First Choice School For International Families & Diplomats

The International School of Berne first officially appeared under the name of the English Speaking School of Berne in October 1961.

Harry George French, Russell Smith along with Don Logan were among the founding fathers who realized that their children could not continue their education in the local schools at that time, and therefore decided, with the help of Ambassador McKinley, to set up a small English-speaking school for their families.

Rented accommodation was found on three floors of a house in Thunstrasse 97, with donated school materials from various US military bases around Europe, and teachers from the US and UK. A local Swiss teacher, Mrs Padel was appointed to be the first principal and along with 4 other members of staff, shared the teaching of some 40 students aged from 5 -14 years of age. The students came from English-speaking diplomatic and business families resident in the Berne area.

By 1965 the enrolment had reached 52 and when even the kitchen was used as a classroom, it was evident that situation had to change. Under the Chairman of the Board, Mr Malcolm Lawrence, and the Headmaster at that time, Mr John Curtis, land was found in Gümligen and the first buildings of our current campus were built.

In 2001, the Elementary school expanded into the Geelhaar building, located across the street from the orginal buildings.

ISBerne’s dedication to excellence in international education has been part of the school drive to develop as an International Baccalaureate World School. After establishing the IB Diploma programme in 1995, the school was  authorised to offer the IB Primary Years Programme in January 2007 and the IB Middle Years Programme in April 2007. ISBerne is now one of only 130 IB schools worldwide authorised to offer all three IB programmes.

The 2011 – 2012 school year marks 50 years of ISBerne. We are very excited for the future of the school and celebrating the past 50 years of success.

ISBerne is scheduled to move to a new purpose-built campus, close to its current location, in summer 2015.