Our School

In August 2008 the German International School Sydney moved to its green and leafy school campus in Terrey Hills. Terrey Hills is a rural suburb on Sydney’s Northern Beaches, surrounded by both Ku-ring-gai Chase and Garigal National Parks.

Within the first 10 years, the school has undertaken several expansions (2009/2010, 2017/2018) to support the growth in student numbers and new teaching concepts.

Our campus development doesn't stop here. In 2022, we have teamed up with famous school Architect Knut Menden to build three new classrooms that meet the eco-friendly passive house standard. Our class rooms extensions in 2018 and 2022 are not only sustainable and innovative, but have also been recognised for their Design at the Australian Good Design Awards, Sustainability Awards and Timber Design Awards.


The school campus consists of 10 buildings/structures which create several levels following the natural slope of the 16,200 sqm property.

The buildings are structured to represent a student’s educational path: the first two buildings house the Preschool (with its own outdoor area) and the Primary School classrooms. The next building is home to the Junior Secondary School and includes a multifunction room (which seats up to 80 people) and the IB Study Centre. At the far end of the property one building houses the specialist rooms (science, arts, and music) and the other building classrooms for Years 9-12. The centre of the property holds the lobby, teacher’s room and both the school’s management and administration offices. The library is surrounded by further learning areas for Primary and Junior Secondary classes.

Each building is named after a famous person – a result of a competition amongst parents, students, and staff members of the School.

Enhanced learning spaces

In October 2017, the original classrooms were retro-fitted with air-condition; now all classrooms are using air-condition for heating and cooling. For years K to 6, several sets of laptops are available to be used in the classrooms and integrate the use of modern technology in any lesson. From year 7 onwards, students bring their own laptop. This approach is supported by a wireless local network accessible in every classroom. 

Sustainable classroom designs

At the beginning of 2022, the eagerly awaited and urgently needed additional class rooms of GISS were opened, which were constructed according to the passive house design. As a result, the bright classrooms made of solid wood have a very low energy consumption and save CO2 emissions.

Key School Facilities

  • Indoor Sports Hall - The sports hall is mainly underground and with its stage can also be used for performances and assemblies for up to 400 people
  • Outdoor multisports field - A covered outdoor multisports field was added in 2015
  • Next door Swim School - The School uses the neighbouring Terrey Hills Swim School for parts of its physical education program
  • Varies outdoor play areas with sun covers

Environmentally friendly 

Proven environmental technologies are integrated in the school campus: rainwater is collected from the roofs and is used to water the plants. The toilets have waterless urinals installed. The School produces power with the 10kW solar panels installed on the roof of the administration building. In 2017 the solar plant produced 13,080 kWh of power, which is about 8% of the School’s annual power consumption. The solar plant was installed as part of the Solar Roofs Program for Foreign Market Development by the German Energy Agency (DENA) and Phoenix Solar.
The construction and extension of the School would not have been possible without the financial support of the German and the Australian Governments: the German Government contributed $13m to the new school campus and the Australian Government contributed $1m to the extension and shade structures. The School’s own contribution amounts to over $8m.