I have had a child at IST for three years and it has overall been a wonderful experience. The focus is very academic, however, my childeren are very happy and enjoy their time at school. The teachers are wonderful and the parents/childeren are from all over the world...a rare opportunity in the U.S. to interact with people from many different cultures on a regular basis.
Both our children have been at the school for a year and a half and we would not want to be anywhere else. This is after moving from excellent schools in Atlanta. The buildings are not much to look at, but the commitment and dedication to education of the staff is inspiring and the sense of community amongst the parents and families remarkable.
I am thrilled that the International School of Tucson exists in Tucson as there is no other school like it. Our child is being challenged daily at her level which is similar to her classmates for some activities and different for others. The teachers teach to the individual levels of each child. Our child is not only bilingual now but is also having fun and learning new things even after school with so many activities offered -- art, soccer, choir, theater, kung fu, basketball, chess and more. Another reviewer wrote that families are charged for these activities but that doesn't make sense. All of these are included in the tuition. Only when an outside coach comes in, like for chess, or a private music teacher such as for violin or piano lessons, then are parents charged for these -- which makes sense! Where can you get violin lessons for free? Families, students and teachers are from all over -- from the U.S.A., France, Mexico, Germany, Malaysia, India, Russia, Italy, and many more countries! So our child gets to know first-hand that the world is composed of many cultures and countries. And the teachers are just excellent and care so genuinely for each student. It's so nice to see the teachers and students give each other a hug where in some schools this isn't even permitted! We love IST!
I don't understand this negative review. IST does not charge any extra fees except for clubs like soccer or basketball when there is an outside charge. Parent Association events like potlucks are nothing to do with the school. If you don;t like it, go to a meeting and vote. Music is an extra charge because they are private lessons!! There is nothing at private or charter schools better than at IST. The school does fundraising because tuition doesn't cover everything. This is all published in the newsletter. Fees bring in $700,000. Salaries and rent are $700.000. That means building costs like the new preschool building or purchasing the campus come from fundraising. At a private school we cannot escape fundraising. We are very happy at IST. We have one child in PS and one child in JS. We have friends at other schools and when we hear their stories, we are glad to be at IST.
My daughter loves IST. It is the only school of its kind in Tucson. My daughter is 3 and she is learning Mandarin, she can already understand a lot and speak some, and it hasn't even been a year yet. The school really tries to keep tuition low so children from all backgrounds can attend. It is an excellent school that teaches children languages and tolerance.
This school needs money, if only to stop nickel and diming the parents to death.
They claim that their tuition is all inclusive, while activities like science and music are activities with participation fees like other private schools in the area.
IST needs money. They'll ask you for it at every turn. Please give so that the parents cease to be the victims of IST's opaque pricing practices.