At the German International School, we educate well-rounded, global citizens from Preschool through fifth grade.
Learn how our mission, philosophy, school environment, and curriculum inform how we educate our students.
GIS is a collaborative community with a student-centered learning environment that encourages growth into bilingual world citizens, who strive for academic and creative excellence, embrace healthy and responsible behavior, and value independence and lifelong learning.
GIS ist eine Lerngemeinschaft, in der unsere Schüler im Mittelpunkt stehen. Hier wachsen Kinder in einer zweisprachigen und weltoffenen Umgebung auf und streben nach akademischer und kreativer Exzellenz, übernehmen Verantwortung für sich selbst und ihre Umgebung, und entfalten ihre Individualität und werden an selbständiges, kooperatives und lebenslanges Lernen herangeführt.
State of the School Updates
Welcome to a new way of keeping our community posted on progress going on in our busy school. Below are some quick updates that have been collected as a result of conversations, strategic planning and board work. As always, if you have questions or ideas on how to improve our school, please do not hesitate to contact a board or staff member.
After the BLI (German Government Inspection, ZfA): in May 2015 the school received the German School of Excellence accreditation. Over the summer, the written report arrived and the staff and board immediately started working on the recommendations for improvement. Focus areas are:
-Teaching and Learning: teachers have been working during the whole school year to collaborate on German language structured teaching.
-Action Plan: as part of the 7 year accreditation cycle, the next step after BLI is to create an Action Plan based on the BLI report. The staff has completed this process, is working on the next steps and the Action Plan was submitted and approved by the ZfA in April 2016.
-Community: the report highlights our community as a major strength of our school. No recommendations for structural change are in the report.
If you would like to read the report (unfortunately, we only have it in German), please contact Stefanie.firstname.lastname@example.org to arrange a time for review. Because the report is so detailed, much of the content requires context for thorough understanding.
On the road to IB-PYP Certification: all staff have been trained in IB program delivery. We had an initial visit from our IB consultant in the Spring of 2015 and were encouraged to submit our application to become an accredited IB school. All materials were worked on by our teaching staff and IB Coordinator and were submitted before spring break. We will be welcoming the IB certification visit in the Fall of 2016.
Standardized Testing: due to changes in the Oregon system, the private schools were not invited to participate in the tests administered by the Beaverton School District. Based on the school’s BLI feedback students in grade 3 will participate in “ Vergleichsarbeiten – VERA” this spring. Vera is a German equivalent to standardized testing. - 5th grade students will participate in CTP4 in English. These tests are better suited for international school students and are administered worldwide. Results of this experience will be used to determine if our school’s progress can be effectively measured using these tests.
Strategic Plan: many thanks to all of the parents, board and staff members who have already participated in a listening session. This process will take time and we will continue to share results, wishes, dreams and areas for improvement as we go forward. Over the summer, the board will work to extract themes from the collected data and use that information to generate priorities for the school during the next 3-5 years.
Facility: as you may recall, the school board entered into a 10-year lease in April 2015 with a fixed option to buy last spring. Choosing this option over the originally planned bank purchase allowed the school to hold on to down payment funds, lowered monthly expenses, take control of the sublease for the Cor Deo Academy and secure the school’s future. Since that time, the school has:
-responded to enrollment growth by building new classrooms upstairs
- invested into the program through program enhancements and staff training, including IB specific workshops
-invested in the program with the help of the community by installing a new play structure
-replaced flooring in a large portion of the main level, changed out Preschool/Kindergarten toilets, and are progressively changing all PreK/Kindergarten sinks and tables and chairs to a more functional product.
- purchased the back lot with the generosity and support of many of our community members
and through a grant from the German government.
-currently plans are being made to possibly purchase an additional back lot for more playground expansion as well as replacing the remainder of the carpet on the main floor.
“The flags make my school special. I love that part. Have you seen them? We have SO MANY FLAGS!”
- GIS Student, Preschool
Learning at the German International School
Designed for children to play, explore, and discover in a safe, nurturing, hands-on environment.
Children continue their journey by connecting their personal experiences into classroom learning.