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K-8
Public charter
Seaside, CA
Students enrolled: 416
Before care: No
After care: Yes

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1720 Yosemite Street
Seaside, CA 93955

School website
(831) 583-2165
(831) 899-7653
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Map of International School Of Monterey address.

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April 03, 2014
Yes, there is a lot of homework in the upper grades. My daughter is in the middle school, and it seems like there is always a project due, a paper due in language arts, a test to prepare for in Social Studies, a paper due in Spanish, a video due for something else. Every day something. But, in the end, I think the kids learn to balance homework with their other activities, and I think they are becoming prepared for high school. when I hear about kids in other MPUSD middle schools barely being asked to write papers, I'm grateful that they are getting that experience at ISM. I agree with the student below that the new grading system is baffling and somewhat annoying to read. Some teachers do not update it promptly, so there is not the quick feedback I'd like. but, I think that comes with grading a bunch of papers. if they just assigned simple mindless worksheets, than everything would be easy to grade and understand, and homework wouldn't take as long to do. But the kids would learn less. A good group of parents and a good vibe. I can see why many more families apply each year than there are available spots. There are NOT a lot of better schools out there in this area.

- submitted by a parent
January 12, 2014
The teachers and students at this school are caring, and friendly but, the homework loads are extreme. I have about 3 hours of homework a night. I don't do anything but homework anymore since the school became an IB school. The IB program implements a weird grading system that is difficult to understand and adjust to. Overall, there are many better schools out there.

- submitted by a community member
December 27, 2013
This school is terrible and the teachers are uneducational and at recess or break the teachers or the person watching the kids doesnt pay attention and my son always gets hurt and all he does is text and talks and kids always get hurt. Homework lab is the worst and my son never gets his homework done and we pay alot just to have our kids getting yelled at and the after school teachers joke around with each other and dont pay attention

- submitted by a parent
November 25, 2013
My son has attended ISM for four years, while it may not be a good fit for everyone; it has been a great fit for us. The international perspective that the children are challenged with is not found in public schools. What Public school do you know of that a child can Surf as part of the curriculum (6th grade) or contact the United Arab Emeritus regarding a desalination project (5th grade)? Family Share is what is requested, it is not required. But in my opinion how could you not contribute. This is not a school that you are forced to attend. I appreciate the International School of Monterey. It is helping my son love learning. You can t put a price on that

- submitted by a parent
October 21, 2013
Had great hopes for this school but it was a HUGE disappointment academically. In four years, we had ONE pretty good teacher. Math and Spanish were a disaster. Parents very engaged but teachers are mostly below what you would find in a good regular public school. You are required to pay an annual 'gift' for their special programs and services but frankly they deliver less than a public school. Do your child a favor and don't buy the hype. An unhappy parent.

- submitted by a parent
August 24, 2013
My daughter is a student at ISM and she and I could not be happier. We both love the friendly caring community of parents and staff at ISM. This is my daughter's second year at the school and the change I have seen in her is amazing. She now looks forward to school and comes home excited about what she has learned. She talks about what she has learned, how much she likes her teachers, and what they are going to do next as a class. She has made some really good friends at this school and the school did a great job making her feel accepted as a new kid last year. Having classes like Spanish and PE as well as an stimulating curriculum is such a luxury compared to other schools in the area. The school is a safe, caring, environment and we could not be happier.

- submitted by a parent
August 23, 2013
My children attend the International School of Monterey and we love it. Mainly because of the ISM community of families and the great staff. It's a group of parents, kids and teachers that really care and have a multicultural approach to teaching and view of the world. Do I think its perfect - no, but it is the best thing that has happened to our children's education and the one thing as a parent that I feel confident we are doing right. It's a tough job to raise kids and make sure they are educated in a way that makes them prepared to be successful in this diverse world we live in. The International School of Monterey is well run and my boys are thrilled to go to school every morning. I am a very happy ISM parent.

- submitted by a parent
August 23, 2013
A strong ethos of engagement on the part of the parents, a distinctly global worldview on the part of the teachers, and a warm, accepting culture among the students drew us to ISM nine years ago. Several administrators and many teachers later, we remain very happy with the school and feel honored to be part of the ISM community. Several stand-out teachers have deeply impacted our children--academically, socially, and, importantly, helping them become confident and caring critical thinkers, willing to share their opinions. Group projects, though sometimes a logistical nightmare for parents, have given my kids team work skills. The PE classes have given them confidence in their bodies. And classmates have become close friends. I can't rate ISM vis a vis other schools, but I can say that we remain happy and active ISM parents, happy to entrust our children each weekday to the teachers, administrators, and students.

- submitted by a parent
August 23, 2013
Our kids are in their 3rd year at ISM as 4th and 2nd graders. We are grateful to have a school with a unique, whole-child, inquiry based curriculum and be a part of a warm and diverse community that is ISM. The high level of commitment on the part of the Teachers, Staff, and Parents makes ISM a great school for our kids to grow and learn in. I consider it to be academically rigorous but fulfilling at the same time. Students are challenged by an interdisciplinary curriculum that weaves content areas together and connects concepts (e.g., Spanish with Visual Arts and Math with Language Arts). We are thrilled to be a part of one of the best schools on the Monterey Peninsula!

- submitted by a parent
August 07, 2013
This school may not be for everyone, but it s been perfect for our family. As a part of the ISM Community for the past 8 years, we ve never once regretted the decision to enroll in the lottery. My child has thrived in the inquiry-based academic environment and has been rewarded with teachers who are interesting, challenging, and supportive. Any issues we ve had were resolved with a mutually respectful dialogue. Teacher turnover can be disruptive, but the influx of new ideas and talent can have a very positive impact on student learning as well. The curriculum has changed, streamlined, and strengthened over recent years with the adoption of the IB profile. Being an active part of the Community makes a difference in the overall experience-- I make it my duty to get to know my child s teachers personally, offer resource and volunteer support (I work full time, but choose to volunteer, a lot), provide program feedback to administration when requested, and financially contribute to allow the continuation of special programs (arts, ). ISM has a wonderful core of parent-guardian volunteers that contribute an enormous amount of energy in support of the students, teachers, and school.

- submitted by a parent
August 01, 2013
The campus is in great need of a facelift but aside from that it is a wonderful school with wonderful teachers and staff! We feel very lucky and proud to be a part of it!

- submitted by a parent
June 09, 2013
After reading all these comments. ISM looks like okay school. I mean I go to ISM as well and I am in 6th grade but I am kind of scared of the teachers next year especially the l.a or s.s classes. This is an okay school so far but I am getting second thoughts. You.have to donate t Student

- submitted by a community member
March 01, 2013
Teacher's don't listen to student conflict and when confronted by a parent seem to take it out on the student. Principal doesn't listen AT ALL. Kids behavior at the school is terrible. I think the lottery system is a joke. If you are a big donor your kid will get in and the staff will not discipline that child. They will get a way with misbehavior etc. Not fair to the children who want to learn. Teacher's talk down to the kids. They don't seem to be happy. Don't BE FOOLED.

- submitted by a parent
June 11, 2012
ISM may not be an academic powerhouse, but the flexible curriculum is a definite plus in these days of state-testing hysteria. The school sponsors many educational field trips and activities in the community, and these also are hugely beneficial to its student body. I also like the fact that the school is a K-8 and the students are required to wear uniforms. The one negative is the high rate of staff turnover. It's unfortunately true that many of the teachers only stay a year or two--either they are canned or choose to move on.

- submitted by a parent
July 19, 2011
We moved here a few years ago because my husband got stationed in Monterey and we have two kids enrolled at the school. Considering the surrounding schools in the area, ISM is bar far one of the best. HOWEVER ..it seems that the quality of education has been diminishing over the years. The administrators are more concerned with parent happiness than quality education. This is probably because of the growing number of pushy parents we have at the school. The teachers come and go every year and don t be fooled .hardly ANY of them are international teachers. This year we are losing 1 kindergarten teacher, 2 second grade teachers, possibly a third grade teacher, 1 fourth grade teacher, 1 fifth grade teacher, and a Spanish teacher. This isn t including the large number of middle school teachers that left as well. I can t speak for the working environment the teachers have but it seems to me that happy teachers stick around. With ample amounts of teachers leaving every year, these kids strive for consistency.

- submitted by a parent
July 15, 2011
This is a good school. Far better than other public schools in the area. It ranks on par with Carmel and Pacific Grove and in some aspects exceeds what even these top notch districts have to offer. It has recently suffered some turmoil at the top, but the school seems to have good leadership now. It is a good option, but being a public school it is not the same as other International Schools abroad. There are a few concerns though heading into 2011. Many teachers leave after only one or two years. The pay for teachers is lower than most options causing high turnover, this has especially hurt the Middle School. The school also seems to bite off more than it can chew sometimes. There are aspects of the curriculum that seem to be in place mainly to generate "good press." Parents should be ready to donate your time, effort and be asked for money on a regular basis as well!

- submitted by a teacher
June 24, 2011
This is a great school. Its not perfect and no school is. What I like about this school is that it is trying to always improve. Any school is as good as the dedication of its teachers, the support from the community and of course the commitment of the kids. ISM seems to have a generous amount of all 3. I am a fan!!!

- submitted by a parent
June 07, 2011
I used to love this school. Now, I'm considering moving my child to another school. My child even wants to go someplace else, now. What is the big bummer, though, is that it's still one of the best in the area, so moving my child wouldn't necessarily be in their best interest. I'm crossing my fingers that next year is better. But, with a new principal, who knows? The last principal was great and I'm disappointed he's the one leaving. I do love most of the other parents and students, though! Great people all around me when I'm there volunteering. It's wonderful.

- submitted by a parent
May 04, 2011
This school is awesome! This school is a school everybody is nice to each other!

- submitted by a community member
March 11, 2011
Ism Is The Best I Mean The Best School I Ever Been To! Its my favorite school i every been to! Ism has really fun clases on Fridays that we get to pick what we want to do. That classes is called Sem we get to do really fun stuff. Sometimes if your lucky you get to go surfing for one of the Sems with our P.E teacher! Ism Is The Best! :)

- submitted by a community member
January 08, 2011
After reading the last review, I want to say that I think the elementary teachers are better then the upper grades. We have our student in the school, but will take him out for grade 5 to prepare him for a 'normal' school. Being a charter, ISM offers very few activites, field trips, stuff that most k-8 schools have.

- submitted by a parent
January 07, 2011
Horrible teacher's aide, undependable staff, uncompassionate educational environment, school is physically falling apart, lack of ethics.

- submitted by a parent
December 15, 2010
Wow, this is not a good school. You really have to read between the lines. Most of the bad things I know about the school I am unable to describe here and still be posted.

- submitted by a parent
September 28, 2010
Couldn't be happier with a school, wonderful teachers & staff, spanish starting in kindergarten is just one of the curriculum added bonuses. Can't say enough good things!

- submitted by a parent
no rating September 28, 2010
Amazing staff and curriculum.

- submitted by a parent
February 23, 2010
ISM is a great school compared to the local schools in the district of MPUSD. ISM has extremely high turnover of staff, and staff works under 'at-will' contracts, allowing admin to fire them with little notice. ISM was once a leading charter school and is still good, but it is definitely not 'international' be any means. ISM has become a glorified public school under the leadership of new admin

- submitted by a parent
no rating December 04, 2009
this school is aswome because we have cool classes like in one class on friday the older graders get to go sufring and the teachers are so nice

- submitted by a student
November 29, 2009
The student test scores are the highest in the district The dedicated staff and learning culture at this school nurtures academic achievement in the students and involvement by the parents. The school's small size fosters a true community that has created a network of support where learning, fun, and preparing for life's roads ahead await every student.

- submitted by a parent
no rating October 15, 2009
The best school in the area! Great teachers, great classes!

- submitted by a parent
October 04, 2009
It is a great school for children in this area. The school's staff+parents+students are worked for the best solution. We got more safe, educated, and knowlege to kids. My family have happy to become the member of this school. Thank.

- submitted by a parent
October 03, 2009
The student body is truly international, and the staff and faculty are committed to helping and teaching each student.

- submitted by a community member
no rating September 16, 2009
I love this school. It' truly a school with staff and parent collaboration to ensure the safety,education, and well being our children. We have our children at heart first. We come togetherand stay together to make sure our children needs are met.

- submitted by a parent
August 21, 2009
We are very pleased that our son was able to get in a year ago to this school, it took us 3 yrs of waiting list, but it was all worth it, we have carpool system in place with other families and it just worked so fine. The teachers, staff and curriculum is such so different from any public/private school, parents involvement is so high that's why this school is so successful. There is a great sense of community participation. My son had learned so much and was highly motivated by his teachers.

- submitted by a parent
July 30, 2009
ISM has been a wonderful, nurturing environment for my older son; my younger son will begin kindergarten there next month. The teachers and administrators are dynamic and dedicated; the curriculum is challenging. The school community, by virtue of the required volunteer hours, are actively involved and there is a real sense of community and camaraderie on campus. I appreciate the sense of internationalism and focus on experiential learning. I could not wish for a better learning environment for my children.

- submitted by a parent
no rating June 10, 2009
This school is outstanding. The parents are dedicated and motivated to ensure that the all students get a comprehensive, inquiry-based education that is as challenging and compelling as possible.

- submitted by a parent
July 22, 2008
This review submitted without content.


- submitted by a teacher
May 22, 2008
This review submitted without content.


- submitted by a parent
no rating March 15, 2008
ISM is a great school. Both my girls (K & 4th) started Fall '07 and we couldn't be happier. The inquiry based curriculum supports what my husband and I feel is lacking in most traditional public schools. Creativity & critical thinking are highly valued and encouraged. The teachers are excellent, all grades have Spanish everyday. Drama, art, music and PE are important additions to the rigorous academic program. At this school individuality is really valued and real education takes precedence over chasing perfect test scores.

- submitted by a parent
January 14, 2008
This review submitted without content.


- submitted by a parent
November 26, 2007
This School has great programs run by great teachers and caring staff. The extracurricular activities are great. Especially the After School Taekwondo Program run on campus by Master Daniel Rogers! I would highly recommend this school to anyone who wants one of the best environments for their children!

- submitted by a parent
May 23, 2007
Wonderful school! An exceptional blend of rigorous and interesting classes, quality instructors, and highly devoted parent volunteers. The ISM curriculum is inquiry-based and specifically structured to encourage creativity and individuality.

- submitted by a parent
September 02, 2006
Your child will do well here if he or she is a robot, but if your kid has a single spark of creativity, imagination or individuality, keep them far away from this school.

- submitted by a parent
May 20, 2006
Great School! My kids love the school enrichment program which helps learn stuff like surfing, playing the guitar, knitting to name a few. They also offer a lot of extra curricular activity that the children enjoy participating. Numerous educational field trip that kids enjoy. Great staff and high parent involvement.

- submitted by a parent
April 02, 2006
The International Primary Curriculum (IPC) allows my child to explore science and social studies based units in depth. This was a great fit for my child, as the school heavily stresses inquiry based learning. They have music, art, drama, and P.E. instructors. It is mandatory for parents to volunteer at least 3 hours to their child's classroom a month! This is a good school, that will turn into a great school as it grows.

- submitted by a parent
January 11, 2006
ISM has been a perfect fit for us. The teachers have brought out a true love of learning in our child. The Spanish program was important to us as well as the art, music, drama and P.E. This school is based on parent support and participation. The Director is very open and supportive in all aspects. The inquiry based curriculum makes sure that all children are understanding at their own learning style. Your child may be a visual learner and will understand better if they can view the information, some children are tactile and learn by building or touching,others can learn quickest by reading or listening. Each unit covers all these learning styles.ISM teaches all children to be resposible Citizens of the World, and that alone is quite an accompishment!

- submitted by a parent
September 02, 2005
International School of Monterey offers my first grader a wealth of opportunities unavailable at other public schools: Spanish 4Xs a week, art and music 2xs a week, physical education taught by a PE teacher. In addition, on Friday afternoon, students can select a 6 week workshop from a range of interesting topics, including surfing, cooking, taiko drumming, Japanese language, Spanish dancing. The principal knows my child and me by name and the other teachers know my child. The inquiry based curriculum is heaven-sent when compared to the standards-driven curriculum of other public schools in my area. My child loves going to school.

- submitted by a parent
August 19, 2005
Over all a good school, anything in life can always be improved, including ISM.

- submitted by a parent
July 27, 2005
This is a great school. The teachers really care about the students. The principal really cares about the students and the school.

- submitted by a parent
July 01, 2005
The best school around by far. Caring staff, involved parents. Recommended.

- submitted by a parent
June 21, 2005
This review submitted without content.


- submitted by a parent
no rating May 22, 2005
Friendly people. Consistent teaching. High test scores. Lots of reliance on technology for teaching. They get a lot of grants.

- submitted by a former student
April 16, 2005
This review submitted without content.


- submitted by a student
March 08, 2005
This review submitted without content.


- submitted by a parent
September 07, 2004
My son is now in his 3rd year at ISM and we couldn't be happier with the school. Not only is there a wonderful sense of community among all the faculty, staff and parents, but also their academic programs expect a lot, while taking into consideration the needs of each individual student. He takes Spanish everyday, along with Drama, Music, Art and PE at different times of the week. I feel that the balance that he is being offered in school is shaping him into a well-rounded individual who will contribute great things to the community that he will someday choose to live in. There is homework everyday, but it is not so much that there still isn t time to just have a little fun and unwind at the end of each day. I would recommend this school to anyone who might ask.

- submitted by a parent
June 21, 2004
I think this has been an excellent school overall. The classes are small and the principal and teachers are always available to speak with. I see the school faculty struggling while learning to cope with an older age group acting in the interim on the strict side of discipline. If the comfort level rises and teachers ere on the side of positive reinforcement, there is no limit to what this school might accomplish socially and academically. The emphasis on multiculturalism and Spanish taught to all students give the children a glimpse of the global community. I think everyone is learning at this school together.

- submitted by a parent
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International School Of Monterey
1720 Yosemite Street, Seaside, CA  93955
(831) 583-2165
Last modified International School Of Monterey is a Charter school that serves grades K-8. It has received a GreatSchools rating of 7 out of 10 based on academic quality.
International School Of Monterey Rating: 4 out of 5 based on 55 reviews. Top