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How to Apply

Learn all about our application process for schools.

Applications for the 2021-2022 Prizes are now closed

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We celebrate schools with an opportunity to recognise and share their achievements around the world

Our Application Process

We’ve designed an application process that encourages self-reflection and facilitates meaningful conversations amongst your school’s community, which may include students, parents, guardians, teachers, school leaders, external organisations and anyone else involved with your institution.



Bring your school’s community together.


Familiarise yourself with the Prizes categories and the framework for the World’s Best School Prizes.


Reflect together and identify your best practices in any of these areas, and also those that still need to be improved.


Score your best practices using the rating indicators for each criterion of the category you are applying for.


Gather evidence to prove the impact of your expertise in your students and community’s lives.


Prepare your application responses.


Fill out the form online and submit your application online.

T4 Numbered Stepping Stones
We believe that school self-evaluation empowers a school community to identify great practice and possible areas of improvement. With this application process we want to empower by helping them with this first step so that schools will take ownership of their own development and improvement.
Our application process requires you to reflect, gather evidence and identify best practises in an area of possible improvement. Furthermore, it gives your school scaffolding when deciding what to implement. This will assist you in creating an improvement plan, measuring its progress and celebrating your school’s achievements.
Each school will complete formative self-assessment of their practises with a rating system that showcases a possible scaffolding to set future priorities and continue to improve as a school. Though only one school will be named a winner of the Prize for each category, each school that undertakes the self-assessment application process will do so knowing that they are undertaking a process to improve in the future for their students and have the possibility to participate in the Prizes.
Find out more in the Application Guidance Document and get ready to undertake this journey!
Download the Application Guidance Document.


Early childhood centres, kindergarten, primary, secondary schools, virtual schools – all schools
who teach students in compulsory schooling, and are legally registered with their respective
Ministry of Education or government regulatory authority.

World's Best School Prizes



Applications accepted

March 1st 2022

Applications close

June 2022

Announcement of Top 10 shortlisted schools for each Prize category

September 2022

Announcement of Top 3 finalists for each Prize category

September 2022

Public Advisory Vote

September 2022

Judging Academy Vote

October 2022

Winning Ceremony


When is the application deadline?

Applications close on March 1st, 2022, at 11.45pm GMT.

Can a school apply for more than one Prize category?

Yes, a school can apply for more than one Prize category, but please note that you should be completing a form for each.

Who can apply for the Prizes?

Early childhood centres, kindergarten, primary, secondary schools, online schools – all schools who teach students in compulsory schooling, and are legally registered with their respective Ministry of Education or government regulatory authority.

Who can complete the application form?

Only teachers, school principals or other members of the applicant school’s leadership team or of its governing body can complete the application form.

If my school belongs to a network of schools, can we apply as an organisation?

No, you need to apply as an individual school.

Do I need any authorisation from any superiors to submit an application for my school?

Yes, you need permission from your school authorities to apply for the Prizes. By applying to the World’s Best School Prizes, you take full legal responsibility for ensuring the necessary permissions have been sought and granted in advance.

Does the application involve any costs for schools?

There are no costs to apply and enter the contest. However, on the application form, if you wish you can opt to purchase a printed and framed certificate of ‘World’s Best School Applicant School’, which has a cost of £100, but please note this is OPTIONAL. Regardless of this, all applicants will receive a free digital Applicant School badge.

Can I apply in any language?

We are currently only able to accept applications written in English. If this creates a challenge for you, it is possible for someone else to complete the application on your behalf and liaise with us.

Can I leave an application open and submit it later?

No, you have to submit the application all at once, so make sure you have all the information you need before filling the form.

What is the research basis of the World’s Best School Prizes?

We have invested a significant effort in ensuring that the five Prize Categories are backed by research and evidence. Learn more about the rationale of the Prizes in this document.

What are the funding sources of the World’s Best Schools Prizes?

The Prizes are funded by sponsorship and grant funding from organisations in the private and philanthropic sectors.

What is the Prize award for the winners?

A Prize of US$250,000 will be shared equally amongst the five winners. Each winner will receive a Prize award of US$50.000. Learn more about our Terms and Conditions.

Download Terms & Conditions