The school is an experiment. Every new term there is something new. I can only say that it creates a lot of confusion on the kids. The children are forced to share classrooms with other classes creating friction and insecurities on the younger children. For example 3rd and 4rd graders are forced to share the same classroom. How are 3rd graders going to succeed in a room with older kids.
The school has a poor English department. My kids are reading and speaking English very poorly. I had to transfer to the American system because they were not going to compete for good spots in the American universities.
Very confusing. The teachers never send you a weekly report on your child progress and preparation for test was confusing. I worked very close with my child on prepping for the tests. Their tests and quizzes went beyond of what was explained in the classroom. How can a child succeed if the test is not what has been taught?
Amazing! Great teachers, most are young enough to be very energetic and into their subject but have enough experience to be good. Speaking only for the upper school there is a lot of motivations among students and teachers and a lot of teamwork, great projects, engaging classes etc. It is the best school I know and especially the German, Math and History programs are unbeatable. There is a lot of science which can be overbearing but is a very valuable attribute to the students. The only thing there is to criticize is that the English program (in the upper school) is a joke, the teachers are very incapable and grading is completely off.
Both my husband and I are German but both our kids were born here. Our older child has been going to the Vorschule (Kindergarten) for 8 months now and it has been a great experience for all of us. Her German has improved tremendously. Despite the less rigorous curriculum compared to public school Kindergarten, she is learning to read, write and do math but with a healthy dose of self-motivation while still being given ample time to follow her creativity and imagination. It is also great to have such a tight school community where parents and teachers support each other and parents can have an influence on the development of the school if they want to.
We are an American family and this is our 6th year at the GISB. We continue to be impressed by many facets of excellence at our school: the German language platform; multiculturalism; excellence, integrity, and resilience in the staff; rich learning in art, science, language, music, and ethics; cross-grade teaching; the generous after school program; etc. The list goes on. However, the reason we are passionate about our school is because it is much more than a school. It is a community with a shared set of spoken and unspoken values amidst which our children are growing up. It is a private school, but also a middle-class school. Achievement and contribution are valued over wealth and status. Parents chat in the parking lot! We buy baked goods on Friday mornings. School gatherings are family gatherings. Our children face academic and real-life challenges, and both are formative. The GISB school community supports the type of socialization and habit forming we want for our grade-schoolers, and the maturation and academic foundation we want for them in middle and high school. Our family is passionate about this type of education.
Our children are attending the German International School and so far, we are very pleased with the academic program and the culture of the school. GISB is a unique school offering a bilingual education in German and English, and is one of only 140 "German Schools Abroad" that are supported by the German government. So far, our children are very happy at the school and are developing as self-reliant learners and confident individuals. The school has a close-knit parent community and there are plenty of opportunities to interact with other parents, teachers, and administrators through participation in social and academic events. At any given year, GISB students can represent over 15 nationalities, and our young children are already aware of cultural, religious, and ethnic diversities, and are being trained as global citizens. Like any other school, GISB will not fulfill the needs of every parent and every student, but it is a perfect school for our family.
We moved to Boston a year ago. Coming from Germany with experience in the rigid school system of Bavaria we were very pleased with the multi-cultural environment at GISB. Small class sizes where every kid gets a high level of attention and individualized support helped our teenager son to make a smooth transition within short time. Maybe more importantly, he quickly became part of the community and likes going to GISB a lot. We perceive the quality of teaching as very good. The kids have a tough schedule but are carefully guided. The approach of the school is exceptional and training is focused to grow kids with personality and skills that will help them to meet the challenges of a globalized world. Getting bi-lingual education and training in two additional languages is definitely a plus. Not to forget the Deutsches Abitur and the US High School Diploma. Of course there is always something you would like to improve. However, the community is strong, involved and committed and the cooperation with the school administration very close. In summary: We are very happy with the decision we made and would encourage everyone interested to have a closer look at this school.