Sir Harry Johnston International School


Location: Malawi
Type: Mainstream School
Phase: All-through
Funding status: Independent
Gender: Mixed
Age range: 2 - 16 years

About Sir Harry Johnston International School


The Primary School was founded in 1959 when Zomba was the Capital of the Nyasaland Protectorate. In the early 1970s the school became one of five ‘designated schools’ under an agreement with the British government that allowed the centrally funded, private schools to continue employing expatriate teachers. In the 1990s the Designated School Board was disbanded, and the school became financially independent selecting to be controlled by a democratically elected Board of Trustees made up from the parent community.

The Secondary School opened in September 2015 and has grown each year. It offers places for students in years 7-11. The Secondary School follows the Cambridge syllabus and students work towards achieving their Cambridge Checkpoints and IGCSE qualifications. Pupil numbers increased in September 2020 due to the introduction of boarding provision. Numbers are expected to increase further in September 2021 as a second hostel and an additional classroom are being constructed.



The Primary and Secondary School are located on the same campus. They include Pre-School, Primary and Secondary Departments, enabling them to cater for children between the ages of 2 and 16 years old. The schools are centrally located with spectacular views of Zomba Plateau, which rises to over 2000 metres.

The Primary School has seven fully equipped classrooms. The Secondary School has five rooms, which includes an arts studio and a science laboratory. Both schools share a multi-purpose hall.

All students have access to a variety of fiction and non-fiction books, as well as various ICT equipment including laptops (with internet access) and projectors. Educational resources are purchased overseas if they are unavailable locally. Our Secondary students are also provided with textbooks to support their studies.

Within the spacious and beautifully landscaped grounds there is a twenty-two metre swimming pool, two 7-a-side football pitches, a netball field, a basketball court, a nursery playground and a cross country track.




In the Primary School, learning is skills-based shaped largely around the English curriculum. The children enjoy a cross-curricular approach to learning through topics such as: Water, Africa, School History and Food, which allows for a deliberate African flavour to learning. Lessons encourage independent and critical thinking through the use of thinking hats and maps, and the emphasis on collaborative learning. High quality teaching and exciting and enthusiastic learning is guaranteed.


The Secondary School is a Cambridge International School. As a result, our teachers deliver the prestigious Cambridge Curriculum.

Years 7, 8 and 9

In years 7, 8 and 9, the Cambridge Curriculum covers English, Mathematics and Science. Other curricular areas are based on the British National Curriculum, but are adapted to meet the needs and interests of our pupils, living in Malawi and as global citizens.

Subjects taught in Years 7, 8 and 9:

English History French

Maths Geography Chinese

Science Religious Education Art and Design

Computing Life Skills Design Technology

Physical Education Music

Years 10 and 11

The school introduced the IGCSE programme in September 2018 for students entering Year 10. Our first set of students will sit their exams in May 2020. Students are studying for nine IGCSEs, accredited by the University of Cambridge. The IGCSEs include compulsory subjects and options selected by the students/parents.

Compulsory Subjects in Years 10 and 11:

First Language English Mathematics French Foreign Language

Literature in English Biology ICT

Options in Years 10 and 11:

Chemistry or

Business Studies Physics or

Art and Design Geography or

Religious Studies

All students have a compulsory weekly PE, swimming and Life Skills class, which are not exam classes, but are a core element of the curriculum. 

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Address: Kalimbuka Road, Zomba, PO Box 52, Malawi
Telephone: +265 1525280
Positions available at Sir Harry Johnston International School