Our History

In 1920-1921 the League of Nations and the International Labour Office (ILO) establish their headquarters in Geneva with staff drawn from many countries. There was the need for a school which would cater for students with a diversity of cultures and would prepare them for university education in their home countries.

1924 : The birth of the first International School

1er jourSo it was that in 1924 the International School of Geneva was founded by local educators and by officials of the League of Nations and ILO.  The purpose of the school was to provide an international education based on the progressive educational principles of the école nouvelle movement associated with Swiss pedagogues such as as Adolphe Ferrière and Edouard Claparède.

Ferrière housed the first class of eight students in his family's chalet. Together with him, those principally involved in the creation of the School were Arthur Sweetser (USA), Dr. Ludwig Rajchman (Poland), William Rappard, Rector of the University of Geneva and Sir Arthur Salter, a senior official of the League of Nations.

Innovative teaching

The direction of the School was entrusted to Paul Meyhoffer, then Director of the International Office of New Schools at the Institut Rousseau. Meyhoffer gathered round him a group of enthusiastic teachers who were to leave a long term impression on the new School. Notable among these were Paul Dupuy, Director of the Ecole Normale Supérieure in Paris; Elsa Hartoch, secretary to Adolphe Ferrière; Marie-Thérèse Maurette, wife of the Head of Research at the ILO; Florence Fake, a young American teacher; and Victor Schaller, who was interested in the educational aspect of the Boy Scout Movement.

At the end of the 1960’s Ecolint was involved in establishing the International Baccalaureat, an international educational programme which is today taken by some 892,000 students across the world and recognised by universities and colleges internationally. The aim of the International Baccalaureat is to help students develop their intellectual, personal, emotional and social abilities which are required for a rapidly changing world.  

In constant development

In September 1929 the school settled in the current site of La Grande Boissière. In the1970s Ecolint increases its infrastructures by merging with the La Châtaigneraie school, and then with the Pregny school. At the beginning of 2000, the increased numbers of students required the construction of a cafeteria on our site in Geneva and a new building in Founex including a catering area. In September 2005 the Campus des Nations is inaugurated and is now the third campus together with Pregny site.

All of these development projects at the schools could not have taken place without the constant support of the entire school community: parents, teachers, students, former students, philanthropic institutions and corporate donors. Our sincere thanks to everyone for their participation and on-going support.

La Grande BoissièreLa ChâtaigneraieCampus des Nations