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Frequently Asked Questions

  • Who makes up the student body of ISA?

    ISA is a dynamic learning community with students from all over the world. Our student population represents 44 nations: 49% from the United Kingdom, 14% from the US, as well as many from France, Nigeria, Norway, Canada, the Netherlands, Angola, Germany, India, Australia, Denmark, Argentina, South Korea, Spain and many more. Over 20 percent of our students hold two or more passports. Although we have many nations attending ISA nearly 50% are from local families in Aberdeen.

  • Are English language and support services available?

    English as an Additional Language (EAL) is available for students requiring support with English as an academic language. The school provides limited specialist assistance for students with mild learning difficulties. All students are expected to complete ISA’s regular curriculum; Learning Support and EAL help to accommodate that goal.

  • Do you have a cafeteria that serves hot lunches?

    ISA chefs prepare and serve an extensive array of both hot and cold foods and beverages, on offer at reasonable prices, everyday. The International Café is open from 7:30am until 3:30pm. Students may bring a packed lunch from home, choose to buy a meal, or buy some items to accompany their packed lunch. The menu is available by clicking Quicklinks at the top of our website main page.


  • Are uniforms required during the school day?

    Students at ISA do not wear school uniforms. We do, however, enforce a dress code that requires students to dress reasonably, in good taste, and with respect for others’ cultures. Further information concerning the dress codes can be found in the school’s handbooks.

    Elementary level students are expected to wear ISA shirts for safety purposes on field trips, and physical education classes require appropriate sports attire which may include an ISA t-shirt.

  • What are ISA’s school hours?

    The school week runs Monday-Friday, 8:15 am to 3:00 pm.

  • What is your school year?

    The ISA calendar covers 36 weeks over two semesters, August-December and January-June. The current school calendar can be found at:
    www.isa.aberdeen.sch.u, as well as the calendar for the following school year.

  • How easy is it to transition into ISA?

    Our students are eager to reach out to new friends, and most new students feel at home in no time. After an individual orientation to ISA, new students are welcomed by current students who serve as their ambassadors to ISA as buddy's.

    ISA counsellors, administrators, and PTO have established programmes to assist with transition needs of students, parents and teachers, both upon arrival and when moving on.

  • Is ISA accredited?

    The International School of Aberdeen is accredited by the Council of International Schools and the US Middle States Association of Colleges and Schools. ISA is an IB World School, accredited by the International Baccalaureate Organisation. ISA Preschool is regulated and inspected by The Care Inspectorate.

  • Does ISA hold open days when we can visit the school?

    Individual visits are often more suited to some families’ unique needs, so we offer personal appointments during the school day and interested students may also spend a day in school as a visitor. ISA holds three or four open days per school year as well; these are posted on our website and advertised locally.

    Please contact ISA Admissions to arrange a visit: admissions@isa.aberdeen.sch.uk.

  • What are your fees?
  • What communication channels exist at ISA?

    ISA publishes a weekly online newsletter called Thistle Talk that is located on our 'Community Hub' which is accessed through the front page of our website. Thistle Talk contains up-to-date information from our administrators, athletics department, Fine Arts department, PTO, etc. The newsletter lists important upcoming events and includes the cafeteria menu for the following week. All school information and events can also be found on the 'Community Hub'.

    Elementary School parents receive a constant stream of information via Edmodo and through direct parent-teacher communications given on a regular basis as needed. In addition, the elementary students are encouraged to share feedback they have been given by teachers on a daily basis with their parents. Additionally, our principals hold monthly informative meetings for parents, covering various appropriate topics.

    Middle School and High School parents and students can access PowerSchool to access their child’s current subject grades and attendance. This is also where reports, reflections and standardised test data are shared. ISA makes use of Google Classroom as its Virtual Learning Environment (VLE) and classwork and assignments are posted through this resource. Students who are unable to attend school for whatever reason can keep up to speed with what the class is covering through this VLE. Progress reports are shared at the mid point of each semester in MS/HS with end of semester reports released in December and June. Parent teacher meetings are calendared once each semester but teachers are pleased to hear from parents out-with those times. At the start of the academic year an Open House allows an opportunity for parents to hear about their child's courses and meet his or her teachers. Additionally, information sessions are held throughout the year on topics such as trips, course selection, careers counselling and examinations. Each semester a Principal's Coffee morning offers an update on developments at the school with weekly updates being published on the school's Thistle blog, linked to the Community Hub.

  • How are parents involved at school?

    Parent, student, and faculty involvement leads to the community spirit so often seen and felt at ISA. Parents may volunteer at school and are encouraged to attend grade and school-level coffee mornings.

    All ISA parents are automatically members of ISA’s Parent Teacher Organisation (PTO). More information about our PTO can be found under “About ISA” on the school website. Parents often meet informally over a coffee or tea in the cafeteria or adjoining “street” area.

  • Is there a school transportation service?

    The school provides contract bus service that operates several routes exclusively for ISA students using full-size coaches and mini-buses, depending on the route and/or demand. Please check with our Transport Coordinator to ensure the school bus covers your address. This is not a door-to-door service but a safe pick-up/drop-off location for a group of students. Families living in rural areas may be required to drive their children to the nearest ISA bus point.

    Students living in the school’s neighbourhood often walk or bike to school (helmet, lights, and fenders are strongly recommended for bike riders). Some parents choose to drop off their children by car. Students staying after school (after 3:10pm) for sports or other activities must arrange their own transportation home.

Accredited by

International Baccalaureate Council of International Schools Middle States Association of Colleges and Schools Cambridge International Examinations CNED