Some Commonly Asked Questions about ICS
Some Commonly Asked Questions about ICS
A big part of the admissions process at ICS involves giving tours to prospective and newly-enrolled families. There’s just something about seeing the campus, walking the halls and seeing students in their classrooms that offers families a glimpse of what school life might be like for their own child.
Throughout the school year at ICS we offer many open house visits called “First Look Fridays” and we enlist the help of tour guides (parents of current and former students) to walk these prospective families around the campus and give them a peek into life at ICS. As you can imagine, our tour guides have been asked a wide variety of questions during these occasions. We want to share some of them with you.
Do you have morning and/or after school care? We offer Extended Care which includes before-school and after-school care. Before-school care begins at 7:00 a.m. and after-school care is available until 6:00 p.m. We do not offer drop-in care, but pre-arranged schedules can be accommodated.
Do you have sports teams? We are part of the Capital Athletic Conference and our athletes compete against other private schools in Maryland, DC, and Virginia. Students in 5th– 8th grades have the opportunity to try out for and participate in the following JV/Varsity level sports: (Fall) soccer, cross country; (Winter) basketball; (Spring) lacrosse, softball (boys and girls).
Do students learn any foreign languages? We offer Spanish instruction starting in kindergarten. Our goal is for 8th grade students to be comfortable enough with the language to take Spanish 2 in 9th grade if they choose. Alternate foreign languages may be offered as an elective basis or as an after school program.
Do you have fine arts instruction? All students receive Fine Arts instruction through 6th grade and are offered these as “elective” classes in 7th and 8th grades. We offer orchestra for students in 4th – 8th grade with twice weekly practices for an additional fee. (Instruments are not provided – but can be rented at an additional cost or purchased.) We also offer private music lessons for an additional fee.
Do you offer Tuition Assistance? Yes. Financial aid awards are strictly need-based and decisions are made on a case-by-case basis. Applications are made using a confidential, online process and are due the middle of April. Final decisions are made by our school board and the maximum award granted is 50%.
What do you offer a student who needs additional help, or one who is more advanced? Smaller class sizes offer more individualized instruction for all students. We have Educational Resources Services, offering support to students who may have learning disabilities. The Barton Reading and Spelling System and the NILD Discovery Program are pull out programs that meet about 2x/week with a teacher certified in these areas. We also use Search and Teach, a reading readiness screening and early intervention program for our youngest students.
Starting in 2nd grade we offer Enrichment to small groups of students who are more advanced in a particular area. The mission of Explorers Enrichment is to assist parents and classroom teachers in providing gifted and advanced students with intellectually enhanced, Biblically based educational experiences. Also a pull out session, the focus is on inquiry-based learning, critical thinking, and problem solving skills.
Does ICS have security measures in place? The safety and security of our students/faculty is a priority for us. We have on-site security guards from 7:00 a.m. to 10:00 p.m. as well as 24-hour video surveillance. Visitors are required to check in using our online security system which performs a background check and prints out a badge with picture and purpose of visit. Classrooms doors are secure, accessible only with keycards.
Do you offer school lunches? Students may bring lunch or take advantage of two lunch options: “Wednesday Fun Lunch” (Chick-FilA, Subway, pizza, pasta), and/or a daily healthy lunch option (SmartLunches.com) available for an additional cost.
How do students get to school, with no available bus transportation? Families drive their children to and from school, however many of our ICS families carpool with other families. Every enrolled family is given an ICS Family Directory organized by zip code to arrange carpools with other families who live nearby.
What do you do to welcome new students to the school? New students in 2nd – 8th grades are given a buddy in their grade/homeroom during the summer prior to the school year. If a student comes after school starts he will be given a buddy upon acceptance. These buddies and “sponsor families” are great resources for the new student and family to ask questions, and to be a familiar face for the start of school. Several grades, especially K, 1st and 2nd may organize play dates for students and parents to get together during the summer.
If you’re considering ICS as a school option for your family, we hope you found these questions informative and we’d love the opportunity to meet you personally and give you a tour of our campus. Contact our Enrollment Manager or schedule a tour online. We look forward to seeing you soon!