High schools in Cape Town

Education is not just a human right in South Africa, it is one of the most important aspects of a child’s development. The standard of education a child receives can determine how successful they will be in life. It also allows them to pursue their dreams and ambitions with a matric qualification being required to pursue tertiary education.

The quality of education a child receives often depends on the school that they attend. This means that one of the most important decisions a parent must make regarding their child’s future is deciding what high school (sometimes known as a secondary school in South Africa) they should attend.

This can be difficult especially if you live in a big city like Cape Town. This is because there are over 90 high schools in Cape Town which makes finding the right school for your child challenging. That is why we decided to put together this list of our picks for the 5 best high schools in Cape Town. Allowing parents to make an informed decision about their child’s educational future.

However, physical schools are not the only option anymore for Cape Town parents. You can let your child go to the best online school in Cape Town in the comfort of your own home.

Top 10 high schools in South Africa

Before we get to the top high schools in Cape Town we thought we’d take a look at the top 10 in the country. These rankings are determined by the average number of distinctions per student in their matric year. This gives us a good indication of academic performance.

SchoolLocationAvg No, distinctions per student
Afrikaanse Hoër MeisieskoolPretoria3.523
Star CollegeCape Town3.419
Al-Falaah CollegeDurban3.414
Inkama SchoolVryheid3.3381
Holy Family CollegeJohannesburg2.871
Nizamiye School (Sama High)Johannesburg2.577
Collegiate Girls HighPort Elizabeth2.533
Westville Girls HighDurban2.52
Inanda Seminary SchoolDurban2.452
Hoërskool LindenJohannesburg2.367

6 best High schools in Cape Town

Now that we know what the 10 best high schools in the country are, we can take a look at the best high schools in Cape Town. Keep in mind these are widely considered the best schools, however, the best high school for your child will depend on their unique needs and preferred style of learning. This list is intended to give you a better idea of the high schools in Cape Town so that you can make an informed decision.

1. Star College

As the second-best high school in the country Star College is easily one of the best high schools in Cape Town. Star College is an independent English medium high school founded in 1999 by Horizon Educational Trust. Located in Sybrandpark they are co-educational from Grade RR to Grade 7. They are a girls-only school from Grade 8 to Grade 12. They teach the national curriculum of South Africa and try to teach their students about the diverse cultures in the world. They pride themselves on smaller classes allowing each student to get personalised attention from their qualified teachers so that each student can reach their full potential. This combined with the school’s national ranking makes it one of the most popular high schools in Cape Town.

2. Elroi Academy

While not technically amongst the high schools in Cape Town Elroi Academy is a distance-learning Further Education and Training (Grade 10-12) provider for the National Senior Certificate. Allowing students from all over the country to enrol with them. Elroi academy was founded in 2012 as an assessment centre and curriculum provider with the South African Comprehensive Assessment Institute (SACAI). Elroi Academy is one of the Oldest Online Schools in South Africa. Their students are in diverse situations: some attend small tutor support groups, some are pure home schoolers, others are professional athletes and performers, and some are very ill, unable to attend a normal school. For this most of the work is self-study at your own pace, but with the support of top qualified teachers that are available to assist them personally.

3. American International School of Cape Town

Next on our list of high schools in Cape Town is the American International School of Cape Town (AISCT). This is a private not-for-profit school that was founded in 1997. They are a co-educational school located in the heart of Constantia Hills. This school teaches the American curriculum and follows the northern hemisphere school calendar meaning that the school year begins in August and ends in June. The school has an average class size of 16 students with a student-to-teacher ratio of 10:1. The international curriculum is appealing to many parents, especially if they want their children to pursue higher education overseas.

4. Westford High School

The first of the public high schools in Cape Town on our list is Westford High School. Founded in 1953 they are a co-educational secular public high school. Located in Newlands they pride themselves on offering a broad-based curriculum with academic, sporting, life-skills, cultural and spiritual components. This is intended to help students’ minds and bodies develop holistically, with their motto of “Nil Nisi Optimum” (Nothing but the best) at the forefront of everything they do. Their high school class sizes average about 25 students each which still allows teachers to give each student the attention they need.

5. Bishops Diocesan College

The only one of the boy’s high schools in Cape Town on our list is Bishops Diocesan College. This is an independent English medium day and boarding school for boys. It was established in 1849 in Rondebosch. This school boasts a strong academic ethos with a commitment to developing well-rounded students. They have a proud record of achievement and are one of only four schools to offer the annual Rhodes scholarship which gives a past student the chance to attend the University of Oxford. It is a prestigious institution with a proven history and many great alumni including Raymond Ackerman, the founder of Pick n Pay.

6. Claremont High School

Last but certainly not least on our list of high schools in Cape Town is Claremont High School. This is a public co-educational high school that was founded in 2011 in Claremont. It strives to create an enabling and challenging educational environment designed to produce academic excellence among its students. The school also has a rich extracurricular program that includes local activities like gumboot dancing. They also have camping excursions intended to strengthen the social bonds between students. This school follows the national curriculum of South Africa and provides everything needed to prepare students to pursue tertiary education.


These are our picks for the 6 best high schools in Cape Town. Each of these schools will be able to provide your child with a high-quality education. Enabling them to pursue their dreams to the best of their ability and giving them the best chance of success in life.

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