Foreign families have many reasons to hesitate to move to Copenhagen to start a new life. There’s the weather, the high taxes and the seemingly unwelcoming nature of the Danes.
But with the commendable work-life balance and high security levels, there’s a definite plus for families with children.
Thanks to generous support from the state, which pays 73% of all private school costs in the country, Copenhagen has some of the cheapest international schools in the world, according to the latest report from the International Schools Database (ISD). .
A very low median average
The report assessed the situation in 29 cities in 19 European countries, and Copenhagen was the cheapest.
The average annual fee payable at its international schools is US$4,787 (30,200 crowns).
The cheapest was US$3,764 and the most expensive, Copenhagen International School (CIS), was 20,121.
By viewing the CIS as an outlier – a statistical anomaly – and calculating the results based on median averages, not mean averages, he was able to conclude that Copenhagen is the cheapest in Europe.
Contradicts reputation for high cost of living
Three of the five most expensive cities were in Switzerland, with Zurich leading with a median average of 27,508, followed by London (24,791), Lausanne (23,740), Geneva (23,332) and Brussels (17,405).
After Copenhagen, the four cheapest countries were Valencia (6,161), Amsterdam (6,716), Alicante (6,765) and the Algarve (7,078).
“In Denmark, public and private schools (including international schools) are all heavily subsidized by the government. This may explain why education is so affordable – comparatively speaking – in a country notorious for its high cost of living,” The report explained last year,
Could generous funding be in danger?
In 2017, there were about 550 private schools in Denmark serving 110,000 students nationwide, or about 17% of the school population. Most are classified as friskoler.
In the same year, the current governing Socialdemokratiet party, when it led the opposition, identified friskoler as a serious opponent of integration and said it would like to see its funding reduced.
Friskoler has a reputation for being Muslim, but in reality there are only 26 such schools, 10 of them in Copenhagen, with around 5,000 students.
The United States, China, Switzerland and the United Kingdom are the most expensive countries
Worldwide, only Casablanca and Capetown have lower medians than Copenhagen.
Four countries represented the entire global top 10: the United States, China, Switzerland and the United Kingdom.
The top five were New York, Beijing, Shanghai, San Francisco and Zurich.