Opening for pupils on 21 April 2021
The British School of Amsterdam, began its life in a living room in Amsterdam in 1977 thanks to a small group of British parents who were looking for an English–speaking education for their children. As the years passed more British parents moved to work in the Netherlands from overseas and the number of pupils steadily started to grow.
The British School of Amsterdam has outgrown the three locations we currently occupy. The division of the school onto three separate sites allows each section of the school the space it needs but means the functioning and feeling of the school is split. We have always wanted to be united in a single building, combining a community of parents, pupils and staff with excellent facilities and abundant outside space.
In February 2017 we were delighted and extremely excited to have purchased a magnificent site from the Rijks Vastgoed Bedrijf as our new school location, which will allow us to merge our three schools into one amazing historical location.
The new site is a 19th century monument within a residential neighbourhood. The British School has embarked on a major redevelopment programme, to turn this historic building into a fantastic modern British international school with a capacity of just over 14,000m².
The new school building will be located at Havenstraat 6, in Amsterdam Oud-Zuid. Perfectly positioned between Central Amsterdam and Amstelveen on the border of the financial district. It is in the heart of where most expatriate families in the Metropolitan Area of Amsterdam live and work. The building has great access to the entire city, including the South, Central and Western parts of Amsterdam and Amstelveen. Situated near the Western end of the Vondelpark, the new location will be close to tramlines 2 and 24, multiple bus stops and is a 15 minute drive from Amstelveen centre. It is also close to Schiphol Airport. Using the several bicycle lanes, the school is also easily and safely accessible by bicycle from every direction.
A lot of thought has gone into how to access the new school building, both for cars and bicycles. The new building will feature a ‘Kiss and Ride’ drop off point along the Havenstraat, allowing parents of older children to easily bring their children to the school gates by car. The site will also have parking for bicycles. The site is a one-minute walk away from Haarlemmermeer station and is close to a number of bus and tram stops, allowing easy public transport access to the school.
We are very excited to have the opportunity to turn this former prison monument with its wealth of history, to educate our future generations of over 40 nationalities. Our appreciation of the historic importance is reflected in our close relationship with the Monuments Department of the Municipality of Amsterdam, and our choice of architects, whose experience includes the renovation of the Rijksmuseum and the Anne Frank Huis. We will preserve the historic façade of the building as viewed from the Amstelveenseweg roundabout, restoring the classic view from the main road.
Key features of the new building
In our design for the new school we intend to create an innovative and contemporary space which is both beautiful and highly functional. The designs will reflect our focus on innovation, sustainability and pupil centred learning.
The new building will have the capacity to house up to 1,200 pupils, although through our design we plan to keep our ‘small school’ feeling. There are several features for the new building that we are particularly proud of and it will make both access and learning inspiring for everyone.
A school must provide many functions in one building and our new building will allow us to fulfil this objective. There will be wide hallways and galleries so children and staff can move easily and safely around the school. There will be a variety of different types of study spaces, from classrooms, to libraries and shared areas where older children can engage in individual study or group work. We want all our pupils to have access to the type of environment that suit their learning requirements, as well as the social zones they enjoy. The pupils will have state of the art teaching and learning facilities, which includes a 7m high sports hall and an amazing theatre where they will be able to perform for their peers and parents. The facilities will be designed to meet the sporting standards for all the indoor sports that we play and compete in.
Varied outdoor spaces
The new building will give the British School more outdoor space than ever before. There will be separate play areas for each of the school sections, ensuring children can feel safe and secure during outdoor playtime. We have worked hard to incorporate a number of different types of outdoor spaces, from meadowlands to sand dunes, to areas for gardening and an innovative bio system.
Use of natural light
The skylight at the centre of the building will allow daylight to enter the heart of the school. We want our new school to be beautiful as well as functional – a requirement which is fulfilled by the natural light that shines throughout. The long corridors will provide extensive sight-lines to the exterior, allowing even more light into the building.
Municipality of Amsterdam
This project would not have been possible without the invaluable support of the Municipality of Amsterdam. Many thanks therefore go to the Board of Aldermen and the Chair of Stadsdeel Zuid. Also a huge thanks to all the various clerks and other departments of the Municipality who have helped so much in getting us to this point.
The British School of Amsterdam is an independent co educational non-profit day school, we provide world class teaching and learning for children from 3 to 18 years. We are the first school in the Netherlands to be accredited by the UK Government as a British School Overseas (BSO). We broadly follow the National Curriculum for England. Our school offers a stimulating and caring environment that will enable your child to realise their full potential academically and to develop the skills and confidence to fulfil a responsible life in a changing society. We have enjoyed a magnificent 40 years history and are extremely excited and fortunate to be able to pave the way of the next 40 years and beyond of this amazing British International school in the heart of Amsterdam.