Why choose ISA?
Read what our parents have to say...
"I was very diligent in my search for a Spanish language immersion program and even tried another school. My children are two and four years old so first and foremost I needed teachers and staff who would love my children. The ISA PK2 and PK4 teachers are some of the kindest people I’ve ever met. Their eyes light up when my daughter walks through the door—every single day. That alone means the world to me. Second, what I noticed about many immersion programs is that they seemed over-satisfied by the fact that they were ‘immersive’ and, for this reason, the importance of their academics and/or teaching methodology was secondary. This is not the case at ISA and is ultimately why my children are here: their emotional and intellectual wellbeing are equally significant. This is reflected in ISA’s accreditations and commitment to hire passionate educators who obviously love what they do."
Jen Sensakovic, Bill Sensakovic
"When my wife and I moved to Scottsdale from Chicago in 2012 and enrolled our daughter, Coco, in the French kindergarten at ISA, we had big hopes and expectations. They’ve been richly fulfilled.
Now in seventh grade, Coco speaks elegant French that impresses everybody she encounters each summer on our family trips to Quebec. But there’s so much more to it than language. Coco is a vigorous student all around, with a real curiosity about the world and people beyond Arizona. She’s a voracious reader. She genuinely likes mathematics and science. She likes working on class projects. She’s a vibrant public speaker. And while Coco doubtless deserves credit for her hard work, she couldn’t have done it without the extraordinary teachers, curriculum and culture at ISA.
ISA has figured out how to challenge each of its students without leaving any behind. The international curriculum is, of course, inherently demanding — after all, the kids are not only trying to advance in reading, writing and arithmetic but doing so in a language that most don’t speak at home. And in that kind of taxing environment, some kids will race ahead and others will fall a bit behind. So ISA teachers take an individualized approach to each student — something that is possible thanks to ISA’s modest class sizes. If a couple of the kids are learning a little more slowly, no sweat. The teacher will help them find their footing and let them catch up later in the semester. And if another kid is racing ahead? Hey, that’s OK, too. There are extra credits and projects for students who have the wind at their backs. And believe me, over the years, we’ve seen Coco at both ends of the spectrum.
Another thing we love is how diverse ISA is. There are plenty of ordinary, all-American middle-rung families at the school like ours, sure. Then, of course, there are ex-pat kids from French-speaking and Spanish-speaking countries. Naturally, there are a lot of kids at the school with a French-speaking or Spanish-speaking mom or dad who fell for a Yank. Best of all, the school is packed with kids from every part of the socio-economic spectrum. Yes, some of the kids come from very well-off families. But there are almost as many here who come from families of very limited means. Maybe it’s because as private schools go, ISA is significantly more affordable than others in the area. And certainly we owe much to the fact that many well-off ISA families give generously to the school’s scholarship fund for underprivileged students. Either way, it’s wonderful for Coco to see such a rich tapestry of nationalities, ethnicities and political persuasions at ISA. And honestly, it’s also great for us as parents to plug in to so many wonderful families with interesting stories to tell — often in surprising accents.
ISA is a really special school. It’s a million miles from the dreary public classrooms I sat in when I was growing up in small-town Maine. Coco seems to genuinely love this school. And what greater endorsement can ISA earn than that?"
"As a French family who have lived in Singapore and now in the US, we always sensed the importance of speaking different languages. Nelson Mandela once said “if you talk to a man in a language he understands, that goes to his head; if you talk to him in his own language, that goes to his heart.” We chose ISA because we believe schools with international teachers have a greater impact on children; more insight, diversity and language immersion. More creativity and challenges too! Not only are they excellent teachers, they leave time for students to have a life after school to participate in school activities, sports, clubs, etc.
It is our third year at ISA and we love the size of the classes. We have a Middle Schooler in 6th grade who is studying English Math’s at Grade 7/8 level, and she loves robotics. Our fourth grader loves the English informational writing and most of all sports in the newly upgraded sports-court!!
Thank you, ISA, for providing a Middle School curriculum that is 50% French and 50% English and for offering other languages (Spanish & German). We truly believe that this school benefits our daughters."
Patricia & Jerome T.