Frequently Asked Questions

What are your school hours?

Lower school (grades 1 – 5) and Upper school (grades 6 – 12) campus hours are from 8:00 until 3:00, Monday through Friday.
Early Childhood Education (ECE) hours for Nursery and Pre-School half-day programs are from 8:30 until 12:00.  Dismissal for the full-day Pre-School program is at 3:00.


Is transportation provided in the cost of tuition?

We provide transportation according to our policy (see the application form), by bus to our campuses from most areas of Shanghai and Hangzhou. The buses leave directly after school so if students stay for after school activities then parents need to provide them with transportation home.


Hongqiao Campus and Early Childhood Education Map - Puxi Area, Shanghai


Pudong Lower School and Pudong Upper School Map - Pudong Area, Shanghai


What is a typical class size?

Our target numbers are:

  • Nursery -  Approximately 14 students to one expatriate teacher and two teacher assistants.
  • Pre-School – Approximately 16 students to one expatriate teacher and two teacher assistants.
  • Pre-Kindergarten - Approximately 16 students to one expatriate teacher and one teacher assistant.
  • Kindergarten - Approximately18 students to one expatriate teacher and one teacher assistant.
  • Grades 1 to 5– Approximately 18 - 20 students to one expatriate teacher.
  • Grades 6 to 12- Approximately 20 - 22 students to a class


How do I schedule a tour?

To schedule a tour please fill out our inquiry form by clicking here.


Do students wear school uniforms?

Yes.  We have a smart, yet casual uniform for our Nursery to grade 12 students. Students may wear their own choice of shoes, socks, and jackets. Students in grades 3-12 also have an athletic uniform that is required for physical education (PE) classes.


Do you offer a hot lunch program?

Daily hot lunches are provided for students Pre-School to grade 12 as part of their school fees. A combination of both Asian and Western dishes are served. Students may choose to bring their own lunch but are also welcome to take any of the daily offerings.


Can students enroll during the school year?

Yes.  SCIS-HIS operates a year round admissions process.  There is no deadline for accepting new student applications and we have students enter throughout the school year. Our teachers welcome new students and have procedures in place to help each child transition smoothly to a new environment.


How do you select my child's teacher?

For returning SCIS students, the principals work alongside current teachers to create balanced classrooms and then assign teachers to those class groups.  New to SCIS-HIS students will be placed into class groups by principals based on their gender, language, and learning profile. Principals welcome parent requests for desired characteristics of teachers, but will make the final decisions regarding classroom assignments in order to create the best learning environments for all children.  Upper school students will have a different teacher assigned for each subject and placement will be made based on schedule, level, and student make up of classrooms.


What types of supplies does my child need to bring to school? 

Early childhood students (Nursery, Pre-School, Pre-Kindergarten and Kindergarten) generally need a backpack, a daily snack, and a change of clothes in case of "accidents" or spills. 
Lower school students generally need a backpack and a daily snack. 
Upper school students need a backpack and supplies as indicated by classroom teachers (inexpensive and readily available in China).  The school provides student textbooks and general supplies. 


Do you have an after-school activities program?

SCIS offers a variety of after school activities. Our activities coordinators at each campus will provide parents and students with a list of activities and information regarding the sign-up procedures. After school activities generally run from 3:00 to 4:30 but may run longer depending on the activity or levels involved. A sample of both Lower and Upper School activities can be accessed below.  

Download Lower School After School Activities Sample

Download Upper School After School Activities Sample


How do we schedule classes?

Lower school students simply need to go to their classroom. Specialist classes (i.e. Music, Art, Mandarin, PE, etc.) are built into their weekly schedule. Upper school students have core subjects and electives. The building principal, vice principal or college counselor works with the student to build a program schedule.    


Are parents involved with the school?

SCIS-HIS value our high level of partnership with the parent community and encourage parent participation wherever possible. We welcome parent volunteers in the classrooms and as part of our Parents and Friends Association (PAFA). 


Do you accept students whose primary language is not English?

Yes.  Each campus provides language support through ourEnglish As an Additional Language (EAL) program. A one-time non-refundable EAL fee of 10,000 RMB, over and above the standard tuition fee, is compulsory for newly enrolled EAL students, in grades 1 to 10, whose primary language is not English, or who have not attended an English language school for at least three years.  


Does the school have a religious affiliation?

We celebrate diversity, but we do not have a religious affiliation. Although we do not teach religion, we value and share the richness of different religions and cultures in our SCIS community.


Do you administer standardized achievement tests?

We administer the Northwest Evaluation Association (NWEA - MAP) to students in grades 2 through 10, and our upper school students take the PSAT and SAT.


What type of curriculum does SCIS-HIS offer?  

SCIS-HIS offers a North American curriculum (Nursery - Grade 12) with international underpinnings and multi-cultural elements woven throughout.  The curriculum is purposefully and uniquely designed for the SCIS-HIS learning communities, driven by the Board of Directors’ vision, mandated by the SCIS–HIS mission statement and expected schoolwide learning results (ESLR’s) and founded upon well researched standards.


Please access the site below for an overview of our curriculum structure and the systemwide learning standards and learning expectations for each curricular area.  Grade-level expectations are subject to slight variation across the various SCIS-HIS campuses regarding which specific grade-level addresses each expectation.  Visitors can request additional information by contacting the office of admissions.  SCIS-HIS community members are encouraged to contact their campus administration or their child’s teacher for specifics related to their child’s program.


What is the International Baccalaureate Program?

The IB Diploma Program involves the study of six core subjects, at least three of which are followed at higher level (HL) and the others at standard level (SL). Additionally, students complete a 4000 word Extended Essay (EE), complete the Theory of Knowledge (TOK) course and fulfill the Creativity, Action and Service (CAS) requirements. In addition to submitting internal assessments throughout the program, students will sit an external exam in each of the six core subjects towards the end of their senior year. SCIS graduation requirements are aligned with completing the components of the IB program.

All students in Grades 11 and 12 at SCIS will be expected to follow the full International Baccalaureate Diploma Program in addition to completing SCIS high school graduation requirements.  The IB Diploma Program is designed as an academically challenging and balanced program of education with final examinations that prepares students for success at university and life beyond.  The program is included in the high school course of study at SCIS and has gained recognition and respect from the world's leading universities.


What is your student body breakdown by citizenship?

With over 50 nationalities represented by our student body SCIS-HIS prides itself on our ability to offer a truly diverse and unique international experience. 


Where are your teachers from?

The majority of our teachers are from the U.S. and Canada, but we also have teachers from Australia, U.K., New Zealand, South Africa, and an assortment of other countries.  For teacher bios please consult the information tab of this site.