Cape Breton has two separate school boards; Cape Breton Victoria Regional School Board and the Strait Regional School Board.  These two school boards are responsible for over 13,000 students and 74 schools, including an aboriginal education centre across the region.

Additionally, there is a private school located in Sydney which offers educational learning for preschoolers and elementary aged students.

Cape Breton Victoria Regional School Board
Harbourview Montessori School
Strait Regional School Board

The Conseil Scolaire Acadien Provincial is responsible for the three French schools located in Cape Breton, the Étoile de l’Acadie in Sydney, École Beau-Port in Arichat and École NDA in Cheticamp.  Each of the five first nations communities in Cape Breton have jurisdiction for education on reserve.

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Chart: CBRM Vital Signs 2013

Universities and Post-Secondary Education

Cape Breton is home to a variety of post-secondary and cultural learning centres.  They offer a wide variety of degree and diploma granting programs. 

Cape Breton University (CBU) is one of the region’s most important assets providing world-class university education for the local population and for a diverse international student population from over 50 countries. The university is known for its small class sizes, unique course offerings, adaptable programming, research capabilities and its international petroleum training program.

Cape Breton has two campuses of the Nova Scotia Community College providing high quality education and training for the local workforce in the skills needed by local industry. Combined, the two campuses have some 3,400 students enrolled in full and part time programs. The campuses are: Marconi Campus - Sydney and Strait Area Campus - Port Hawkesbury

The Canadian Coast Guard College is a state-of-the-art facility and the only one of its kind in Canada. Training delivered through the Canadian Coast Guard College is provided for Canadian Coast Guard Officer Cadet recruits and Canadian Public Service employees involved in marine safety and environmental protection.

This French language university the Université Sainte-Anne has two campuses on Cape Breton Island and offers a variety of courses and college and university programs related to health, the arts, business, education and French as a second language and also undertakes fisheries related research.  The campus’ are Petit-de-Grat and Saint-Joseph-du-Moine.

Located in Sydney, the Maritime Environmental Training Institute (METI) specializes in delivering high quality, cost effective environmental and safety training for a variety of industries. Diploma programs include Oil & Gas Skilled Laborer, the Environmental Health & Safety Technician Program and the Scaffolding Certification Program. METI online is known to be one of Canada’s Best Online Training Systems with over 500 businesses and 15,000 active users.

Maritime Drilling Schools Ltd. is located in North Sydney and offers a variety of diploma and certification courses for both onshore and offshore drilling occupations. 

McKenzie College in Sydney offers a variety of full-time diploma courses in programs such as heavy equipment operator, truck driving and forklift operation, earth moving – truck/backhoe training, medical transcription, accounting and bookkeeping, journalism and writing, media arts production, music technology, electronic security technician and digital photography.

New Dawn College in Sydney is dedicated to preparing individuals for the workforce and to take advantage of future growth opportunities by providing education and training to motivate and encourage individuals to enhance their skills. Courses offered include: basic welding, high pressure pipe welding, management, continuing care assistant, disability support worker, cosmetology hair design and cosmetology holistic esthetics/nail technology.

Safety Check in Sydney offers a variety of safety management courses designed to comply with current legislation, regulations and industry needs.

Cape Breton Business College in Sydney offers wide range of diploma programs in health-related, legal and secretarial occupations such as Law and Security, Pharmacy Technician, Dental Assistant, Continuing Care Assistant, Aesthetics, Cosmetology, Residential Care Worker, Teacher Assistant

Island Career Academy in Sydney offers a variety of certificate and diploma courses such as office administration, child and youth care workers, community residential worker, continuing care assistant, early childhood education, paralegal/legal assistant and pharmacy technician.